Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Eid Playlist - Movie suggestions for long Eid weekend

By: Hamza Shafique

This Eid Ul Azha we have some serious competition at box office from Pakistani cinema industry. We have two big budget Pakistani movies coming and lucky for us, both are releasing in Dubai a day before their release in Pakistan. Apart from these two we have one movie from Bollywood and Hollywood each incase you are really looking for some familiar faces. Just like every Eid, all the releases suggested are expected to be pure entertainers.

Punjab Nahin Jaungi:

While his last film “Yeh Jawani Phir Nahin Ani” felt like watching another sequel of Sajid Khan’s House Full series, this one seems like inspired from ‘Namaste London’ another hit movie of Akshay Kumar. In the most recent trailer you can see a lot of plot similarities between both. For example, it seems like Mehwish Hayat’s character is very westernized in beliefs/ways and her Mother employs Humayon Saeed to win her heart and bring her back to her eastern to be more precise Punjabi roots. In “Namaste London” it was something similar where Rishi Kapoor uses Akshay Kumar to win Katrina Kaif’s heart and make her realize how good her Punjabi values are. I don’t have a problem when film makers take inspirations across borders, as long as the product is entertaining and Nadeem Baig seems to have perfected the job when it comes to inspirational entertainment. I loved the second trailer of Punjab Nahin Jaongi. Even though the idea doesn’t seem original but the treatment of the subject is appealing. From trailers, Production quality appears top notch and exactly whats expected from Songs are melodious and choreography is of Bollywood standards. Humayon Saeed looks over age but believable for the part. Mehwish Hayat looks amazingly pretty and show enough intensity in the trailer to convince us to buy the ticket for the movie. Mavra and Ahmed Butt both look insignificant and feel like added for the comic relief only. For me the highlight of the trailer was Suhail Ahmed and his ending dialogue . This colorful trailer is easy on eyes and the music is equally pleasant for the ears. I believe this one will be a perfect entertainer for Eid just like Nadeem Baig’s previous blockbuster JPNA. So, if you are looking for a romantic drama comedy with lots of cultural elements head for this one.

Na Maloom Afraad 2:

Second film to look for on this Eid from Pakistani Cinema is Na Maloom Afraad 2 (Release of this one is on hold at the moment as UAE’s National Media Council is still reviewing it -details here- hopefully it will be cleared by 31st  August).  It’s a sequel to 2014 Nabeel Qureshi’s movie of the same name. The principal cast/makers return with same characters but a different story this time. The basic idea of two guys and an old man seems to have been inspired by Bollywood movies Hera Pheri but the plot seems entirely new and even sillier compared to the original Hera Pheri series. There are some moments in the trailer that are seemed to be inspired from Sacha Baron Cohen 2012 comedy The Dictator but considering the first installment we believe the plot will be entirely new. Production again with this one is of international standards, songs and choreography has also improved vs previous movie as well. My only worry with this one is that, where The first one connected to the audience because it dealt with the situation of Karachi which was heavily affected by terrorist activities, target killing etc and hence the name Na Maloom Afraad worked well, as we all heard it a lot in the Pakistani News those days (Thank God things are better now), this one though seems to have deviated away from the original theme of Na Maloom Afraad and delved in to the realm of pure brainless masala entertainers so audience might lose the connection that first one had. Apart from that Fahad Mustafa, Mohsin Abbas and Javed Sheikh look their best, trailer is interesting, songs are catchy and visuals are loud. So, if you want to just laugh out loud and are looking for some brainless comedy then head for this one.


We also have Ajay Devgan starrer Milan Luthuria’s BaadShaho coming from Bollywood. Ajay Devgan is in a league of his own. I don’t always like all of his work but whenever he gets it right that work goes on top of the list. For example, if you will ask me, which is my all-time favorite brawny action entertainer I will go with Singham without even thinking. All the other police action stuff I see seems to be inspired from Singham in one way or the other. Milan Luthria is the director of Baadshaho and he has made two good films (“Kache Dhaage” and “Once upon a time in Mumbai”) with Ajay Devgan previously and I could see resemblance to both of them here. Chemistry of Ajay Devgan and Emraan Hashmi reminds you off “Once upon a time in Mumbai” and the action adventure outlook of the movie will remind you of “Kache Dhaage”- Both are good signs and enough to go for this one if you are looking for some familiar faces on screen. Rest the story seems very obvious from trailer , the movie is an action adventure where a princes (played by Ileana D'Cruz) hires Ajay’s character to transfer her gold. Rest lets go to cinema to find out this Eid.

American Made:

From Hollywood, we have Tom Cruise playing the real life American smuggler of drugs and arms, aircraft pilot, dealer, and money launderer Barry Seal. Trailer is pretty interesting and funny. Tom Cruise is a charmer and amazingly at the age of 55 shows no sign of stopping. His movies are always about pure entertainment whether its Mission Impossible series or the recent The Mummy. Also, American Made is directed by Doug Liman, who has, on his credit some of the coolest entertainers like The Bourne Identity, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Jumper, Edge of Tomorrow etc., so I expect same from this combination of Tom Cruise and Doug Liman. In the trailer, we see Tom playing an opportunistic, free spirited pilot who is working at the same time for CIA, DEA and Drug Cartel. I was listening to one of the interview of Tom Cruise and he described the character as an opportunistic guy, who was supplying ammunition to rebels for CIA and noticed his plane is empty on way back to USA, so when opportunity arrived he made a deal with the drug cartel to transport some drugs. Movie is set in 80s so has this cool retro edge to it as well which is always a plus point for me as if movie turns out to be a dud I can still appreciate some cool cars from the era.

Do let me know which one did you go far and how was it?

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