Pakistani Cinema: Review of Pakistani films released in 2013

Shaan Shahid

Waar

Cast

Shaan Shahid

Meesha Shafi

Ali Azmat

Shamoon Abbasi

Ayesha Khan

Hamza Abbasi

Director: Bilal Lashari

Producer: Hassan Waqas Raana

Waar was the most anticipated movie of 2013 and was appreciated by the masses although 80% of it was in English language. The movie is based on the war of terrorism in Pakistan and has been inspired by real life events such as the attack on Lahore Police Academy in 2009. Although there were only a couple of seasoned actors in the movie, the acting throughout the movie was outstanding; Shan and Shamoon Abbasi were by far the best.  Waar definitely marks the revival of Pakistan film industry.

Main Hoon Shahid Afridi

Humayun Saeed

Nadeem Baig

Mahnoor Baloch

Noman Habib

Javed Sheikh

Hamza Ali Abbasi

Combine new plot, great direction, good music and excellent performance and you will get Main Hoon Shahid Afridi an outstanding movie of 2013. The hero is a teenager who idolizes Shahid Afridi and wants to become like him. It is the story of determination and portrays the message that if you are deeply committed to your goal then you can overcome all obstacles.

Josh

Cast

Amina Sheikh

Mohib Mirza

Nyla Jafri

Director: Iram Parveen Bilal

Producer: Iram Parveen Bilal, Saad bin Mujeeb and Kelly Thomas

Josh is another Pakistani movie that depicted the socio-political structure of Karachi city. Lately Karachi is being used to represent the socio-political problems in Pakistan. In this film the director Iram Parveen has raised the subject of the suppression of poor people by feudal and landlords and how anyone (Nusrat Bi) who raises their voice against the injustice is silenced. Fatima (Amina Sheikh) the heroine of the story puzzled by the sudden demise of her nanny Nusrat Bi (Nyla Jafri) tries to seek answers and uncovers helplessness, poverty and deceit.

Seedlings/Lamha

Cast

Amina Sheikh

Mohib Mirza

Gohar Rasheed

Director: Mansur Mujahid

Producer: Meher Jafri and Summer Nicks

In the film Seedlings/Lamha we see a couple deal with the death of their only child. The real life husband wife duo Mohib Mirza and Amina Sheikh play the lead roles of Raza and Maliha the artist couple whose world is shattered when their son dies in an accident caused by rickshaw driver Anil (Gohar Rasheed). This tragedy tears the couple apart but the rickshaw driver has his demons chasing him as well. Seedlings won two awards at the New Year International Film Festival that of Best Actress and the Audience Award for the Best Film. The international critics described Seedlings as a “new wave in Pakistani cinema”.

Sayiaah

Cast

Hareem Farooq

Jabbar Naeem

Mahnoor Usman

Director: Azfar Jafri

Producer: Imran Raza Kazmi

One of the notable independent movies of 2013 was Sayiaah; a horror flick written by Osman Khalid Butt and directed by Azfar Jafri. Although the promos showed black magic to be the theme of the movie but it revolved more along the lines of exorcism. A couple Bilal and Zara played by Jabbar Naeem and Hareem Farooq moves to a big house and after the miscarriage of their child, decide to adopt one. The child (Mahnoor Usman) unfortunately is not your normal regular child and at this point evil enters the house and the lives of the couple. It is a low budget movie and is quite good with some hair raising skin crawling scenes.

Ishaq Khuda

Cast

Shaan

Saima

Ahsan Khan

Meera

Wiam Dhamni

Director: Shehzad Rafique

Producer: Shafquat Chaudry

Ishaq Khuda is a Pakistani feature film sans the usual Lollywood masala. It is a movie about divine love; its purity and its impact on the lives of the people. It subtly delivers a social message that divine love promotes brotherhood kindness and peace. It shows the difference between the preaching of a mullah and a dervaish; a mullah instills the fear of God in people while a dervaish teaches people to love humanity as God loves those the most of love His creation. The movie has some big names from the film industry such as Shan who plays Rulia a villainous character who later transforms into a dervaish, Saima as his love interest Malka, Ahsan Khan and Meera. The Dubai based actress and singer Wiam Dhamni has also performed an important role of Kulsoom in the movie.

Chambeli

Cast

Ghulam Mohiuddin

Ali Tahir

Mehreen Syed

Director: Ismail Jilani

Producer: Abdullah Kadwani and Shahzad Nawaz

Chambeli was a noteworthy Pakistani movie based on politics. The movie portrays the political situation in a fictitious country Mulk-e-Khudadad but you easily connect it with Pakistan and its problems. Fed up by the rampant corruption, victimization and exploitation of the weak, a group of youth forms their own political party Chambeli Tehreek. Although the initial response from the masses is not positive but gradually it gains strength and emerges as a clear victor in the elections. The movie was appreciated by all and was termed as a ray of hope not only for the Pakistani cinema but also for the youth of Pakistan.

Zinda Bhaag

Cast

Naseeruddin Shah

Khurram Patras

Zohaib

Salman Ahmed Khan

Amna Illyas 

Director: Meenu Gaur and Farjad Nabi

Producer:  Mazhar Zaidi

Zinda Bhaag was a masterpiece released in 2013. It was a story of three lower middle class boys (Khurram Patras, Zohaib and Salman Ahmed Khan) whose ultimate dream is to somehow migrate from Pakistan. Zinda Bhagg portrays the dark and desperate circumstances that lead the youth to endanger their lives and take huge risks to go abroad whether to Dubai, USA or Europe, anywhere but Pakistan. The movie was also sent to the 86th Academy Awards but was not nominated.

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