Is Pakistan’s Film Industry On The Right Track?

Pakistan cricket captain Sarfraz Ahmed has appreciated the great efforts of the new talented and skilled group of filmmakers who have revived the Pakistan film industry with their wonderful acting and filming skills.

In a tweet, Sarfraz lauded them and said: “Our film industry is on right track. Well done Humayun Saeed, Ali Zafar, Fahad Mustafa, Vasay Chaudhry, Ahmed Ali Butt, Maya Ali, Mehwish Hayat, extremely proud of you guys. Pakistan Zindabad. HarSansMeinBoloPakistan.” As soon as the celebs saw the tweet by the talented sportsman, they started responding to the cricket player in a sweet gesture. But the question arises, is the film industry of Pakistan really on the right track?

No doubt, the film industry has developed quite a lot. The Pakistani movie premiers have full halls quite often now. The movies are even being played in some cinemas in Europe. That is a positive point for the film industry.

However, I feel like movies like Khuda ke liye, Bol, and now Cake were on the right track. They were building a new respectable Lollywood brand that was embedded in our context and portrayed honest stories. Our industry should be built on our revival with that approach. This is not to say they shouldn’t have made entertaining movies, but our entertainment movies should have made their own formula – jokes from our context after studying our society well. However, many filmmakers chose to take the easier path – pick up the tried and tested formula of the item number, a few crappy jokes, misogynistic themes and made money out of it and rejoiced. These movies, like Punjab nahin jaongi and many more, is what is disappointing.  Some movies in the beginning like Bol, Khuda ke liye, Waar were really good in terms of stories and acting. Nowadays some directors just put together good-looking actors, glamour, a lot of makeup, absurd humour, no story in the cauldron and present it to us.

Why copy Bollywood? Their culture is not our culture. They sexualize their movies. It doesn’t mean that we have to do that too. Majority of people prefer good stories to movies that are 60 to 70 percentage of songs. One needs to go home happy after watching a movie not with a headache thanks to all that good for nothing drama. Now people will say that you watch item numbers eagerly in Bollywood movies but when you see item numbers in Pakistani movies then you have an issue and start criticizing. So yes, criticism is due. We are Pakistani and we are Muslims. That is exactly why Pakistani movie makers should try to come up with sensible stories which are both entertaining and mind-blowing at the same time.

There is more to life than just love stories. There is more than just the naach gaana and ishq muhabat. They should make some out of the box movie. Take inspiration from Hollywood movies, Taken, The Commuter, Now You See Me and many such movies. Their stories and their execution are amazing.  This is exactly what Pakistan’s film industry needs to understand. It could attract viewers along with working for the greater good.


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