Pakistani Films

Snooze Fest Karachi

This review originally appeared here.

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Impressed by Sabiha Sumar’s earlier film Khamosh Pani with its strong script and poignant take on Pakistani politics, although admittedly sometime sketchy direction, I was intrigued enough to want to see Good Morning Karachi at the 3rdi film festival despite its rather predictable plot.

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And Baby Came Out to Play: Siyaah and Contemporary Pakistani Horror

Lā ilāha illā-llāhu, muḥammadun rasūlu-llāh

Kya aap Shaitaan par yakeen rakhtay hain?

Karna chahiye kyunki woh aap par yakeen rakhta hai.

Hareem Farooq’s chilling question, one that’s an exact rip-off from Constantine, perhaps, as an homage, reminds me of a particularly telling ayat from Surah Al-Aaraf (16, 17), which clearly states: “Because You have sent me astray, surely, I will sit in wait against them (human beings) on Your straight path. Then I will come to them from before them and behind them, from their right and from their left, and You will not find most of them as thankful ones.”

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Horror at the Edge: Zibahkhana and the Politics of Metaphor

Think Scooby Doo, now think Scooby Doo gone bad. That’s Zibahkhana for you. Part slasher-fest, part zombie-gore, and part murder-mystery, Omar Ali Khan’s directorial debut impresses on all three counts. Most horror films have inspirations and Zibahkhana (2007) is no exception, admittedly based on 1970s/80s Hollywood horror flicks most notably the Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974), this film is refreshing solely because we encounter a completely Pakistani terror all Burqa clad and gurz armed (and that’s only the beginning!). But before I venture to the rather blood-soaked details let me begin by briefly summarizing the gruesome adventure.

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