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. Why can’t Sana change her clothes in the privacy of her bedroom?

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    . Why can’t Sana change her clothes in the privacy of her bedroom?

    It has become unfashionable to watch Pakistani movies except once in a while and even then, just-for-a-change. The simple reason is the deterioration of production standards (or rather preserving the ones that existed in the 1960s) and run-of-the-mill stories. Why then am I trying to review a Pakistani movie? Dont I have anything worthwhile to do - like rating foreign fast food outlets?


    Being a Pakistani, I believe it is my duty to work for the improvement of anything that is Pakistani even if it is the cinema. However, the ordeal I go through watching and reviewing Pakistani movies is overcome only by a stiff upper lip and adherence to what Kennedy once said: Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country


    The film under review is Musalman a "romantic" action movie. The movie is a multi-starrer. A multi-starrer is a movie where instead of one or two characters (lead hero and villain) dominating the movie, all the characters get more or less equal time (barring songs). In this way, should (God forbid) any actor receive an award for his role in this movie, it can only be for Best Supporting Actor.


    The movie is based in Kashmir and is apparently a reply to Indian movies such as Mission Kashmir and Fiza. As Muslims are the wrongdoers in Indian movies, Hindus (who else) are the malefactors in this movie. Shan is the leader of freedom fighters (termed as terrorists in the Indian epics) who is in love with Zeba Bakhtiar, a lady freedom fighter. As both are fighting most of the time, romance is almost non-existent between them. Yet the movie is billed a romantic-action flick.


    Javed Sheikh is a Muslim officer of Indian Border Security Force who orders the killing of harmless Muslim protestors. Being a Muslim, he is ipso facto distrusted by his Hindu superiors who later torture his wife and daughter to death. This turns out to be an eye opener for Javed Sheikh and he too joins the freedom fighters and is martyred in the end.


    There is also Arbaaz Khan, brother of Javed Sheikh who studies in college. He and Meera (a Hindu girl) are in love and believe that religion in no bar to love. Nonetheless, in the end Meera comes into the fold of Islam.


    Sana is a Sikh female officer of BSF. She administers torture on Babar Ali, a captured freedom fighter yet there is some good left in her. As a result, she feels disturbed after each dose of torture and finally falls in love with him. Er, ah - yes, well. Hmm.


    Finally, there are a number of Indian BSF officers who are shown as a sex-hungry lot always going after Kashmiri women (This habit of BSF officers is given ample time on the screen and that is why they too can earn a nomination for a Supporting Actor award). As always is the case in such movies, the film reaches its climax with some tear-jerking scenes where the lead freedom fighter (Shan) departs to a heavenly abode, leaving behind others who vow to continue the struggle to freedom.


    Yes folks, this is all the movie has to offer.


    Who was responsible for movie, you ask? It was written by Rasheed Sajid and directed by Iqbal Kashmiri. The writer came into limelight with the film Tere Pyar Mein (In your love), which was a blockbuster. He had written the dialogues for Tere Pyar Mein, which were mundane and had no part in the success of the movie but the spillover brought fame to him. However nobody recalls that Aag Ka Darya (River of fire) which bombed at the box office a month before had dialogues written by the same writer. Though his dialogues have never brought success to any movie, they definitely had a role in drowning River of fire. They were explicit by Pakistani standards, time and again using words like nangay badan (naked body) in flash backs of rape etc. However the success of Tere Pyar Mein encouraged the dialogue writer and he nursed delusions of being a scriptwriter. He got his break in Musalman thus marking the end of his fifteen minutes (two months) of fame. He should have stuck with dialogue writing. Nevertheless there is still some hope left: his services may someday be better utilized for writing dialogues of Pakistani porno movies.


    Coming to the direction, Pakistan has but a few directors who among themselves direct all Pakistani movies. Rarely do new people venture into directing. It seemed like the director just placed the camera on location, described the scene to the actors (I think?) and asked them to Do whatever comes naturally


    Nonetheless I must give credit where its due. The director made special efforts to make the movie realistic. The entire cast was dressed in realistic dresses with the exception of Meera (the Hindu girl) who exhibited dresses that would have been Fabian in Lahore or even Bombay: the skirts she wore were cut up to the top of her thighs. The rest of the movie, however, was given exceptional treatment in terms of production. All the uniforms/costumes worn by BSF, the freedom fighters and Kashmiri citizens, were realistic. The vehicles used by BSF (jeeps and trucks) were in brilliant condition, giving the illusion that film was partly financed by Pakistan Army.


    The film had some memorable sequences as well. One of them shows about 30 dead bodies of freedom fighters/terrorists were seen scattered, on the ground, (obviously dead after an encounter but without a trace of blood) with their guns beside them. A blind woman with a basket on her back walks between them picking up guns and putting them in the basket. She then brings these to the freedom fighters saying, Boys I have brought you some toys. How the writer came up with such an episode is incomprehensible to me.

    The film was censored too. While one of the BSF officers was enjoying himself with songs and drinks, our hero plants a bomb in his boat. Later when the officer left in the boat, due to the violent nature of the boat explosion, the blast was heard but the screen blacked out.


    There was also an erotic scene that was abruptly interrupted before the possibility of the slightest arousal. Sana is shown undressing in the living room. As soon as she unzips her dress, the Head of BSF puts his hand on her back. She immediately asks him what is the meaning of this. He asks her to change clothes in front of him so that he can see her naked body (Trade Mark Rasheed Sajid dialogue). However, she dismisses him and goes somewhere else to change.


    Conclusion: the story had all the masala required for a successful movie: Action, Drama, Eroticism, Violence and Romance; yet the basic ingredients for a blockbuster a well knit, credible story and crisp direction - were completely lacking.


    Notwithstanding all these shortcomings, the film raised some pertinent questions:


    1. There is so much talk of the people of the two nations wanting to come together but the politicians keeping them at bay in their own interests. Does the media also play a role in aggravating these differences?


    2. Why cant Sana change her clothes in the privacy of her bedroom?


    3. Assuming there was something forcing her to change clothes in the living room, couldnt the BSF officer wait till she had taken all her clothes off and then put his hand on her back?


    4. In light of question 3, does watching too many movies by Rasheed Sajid have an deleterous effect on you?


    5. Can I now finally ask what my country can do for me?


    #2
    Enjoyed reading ur review
    ur headline was masalaidar enough
    to entice guppies to read the content of ur post.
    U r rt. ,although our filmi standards have become a "bit" better now but they still lack
    so many things so that our movies provide us with comic relief (:confusedif not torture.

    ------------------
    Phir ban'ain gay aashnaa
    kitni madarato'n kay baad....

    Comment


      #3
      Does the media also play a role in aggravating these differences?
      Ofcourse media plays a major role in influencing people...CNN and knowledge of an average American is a classic example...they hardly know there is a world outside of America.
      As for Pakistani media...they are just in a tit for tat business. Sounds like this movie was more of a retaliation within the capabilities of our writers and directors rather than entertainment or a message to the nation.

      2. Why cant Sana change her clothes in the privacy of her bedroom?
      Why should she...after all people paid 8 rupees to watch her.


      3. couldnt the BSF officer wait till she had taken all her clothes off and then put his hand on her back?
      Agreed, he could have waited...son of a gun! isn't he!


      4. In light of question 3, does watching too many movies by Rasheed Sajid have an deleterous effect on you?
      I don't know who Rasheed Sajid is but I'm sure if I have 3 hours of leisure time available then I would spend it doing something else.... watching a Pakistani movie! over my dead body.

      5. Can I now finally ask what my country can do for me?
      I don't think so bud...it would take more than a movie's review...but for starters u could stop watching these movies it might keep ur blood pressure down

      ciao
      BoSS

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