We have been following the upcoming filmmakers and their work on feature length films since the past few months. With a handful of films under production and some set to hit the theatres soon, everyone can finally anticipate watching good movies coming out of our local cinemas.

After a gap of two years, a Pakistani film Chambaili hit the theatre last month and is successfully running across the country. Dawn.com yesterday had an opportunity to cover the curtain-raiser of Pakistan’s latest movie “Josh” (Against the Grain) which will be released in Pakistan on Eidul Fitr. Josh is the story of a privileged woman whose life is shattered in a single moment as she embarks on the search for a dangerous truth. A story of the biggest challenge to Pakistan’s still reining feudalism: the country’s youth. The film explores the internal debates the young are struggling with, and how solutions can be attainable if and when they stand united.

The film has an interesting ensemble of some of the finest actors from the Pakistani entertainment industry, who include Aamina Sheikh, Mohib Mirza, Khalid Malik, Navin Waqar, Adnan Shah Tipu, Salim Mairaj, Kaiser Khan Nizamani, Nyla Jafri, Parveen Akbar, Ali Rizvi and Faizan Haqquee.

A remarkable effort for the filmmakers and enthusiast by Nadeem Mandviwalla and Jarjees Seja under the name of “The Platform” was launched at The Atrium cinemas on May 7, 2013.

“The Platform” has been created to showcase movies being made by young Pakistani filmmakers in pursuit of their dreams to make a contribution to Pakistani cinema and to share their fresh and unique vision of the world.

“Our mission is to give an opportunity to these unheard or unseen voices but to be able to make film a hit, is the public’s choice,” Nadeem Mandviwalla, owner of Atrium Cinemas and the managing director of Mandviwalla Entertainment said.

He also spoke about how everyone keeps on debating on the fact that cinemas are being built but films are not being made out of the country. Till the time there are no cinemas in the country , films will not be made, he stated.

Presenting his thoughts on the occasion, Mohammad Jerjees Seja, CEO, ARY Digital Network said, a few years back there was no sight of box-office in Pakistan and it became a long forgotten thing. Cinemas were converted into in shopping malls – but today box-office is being created, now is the time when we need to support our local productions, he stated.

However, Seja also said that everyone is looking for something really grand to happen with bigger setups and popular casts. In regards to this, he mentioned Humayun Saeed, who is working on a film which will be released on Eidul Fitr as well.

“But we felt there is a gap, a sort of a vacuum where we need to bring in new voices and young talent to be heard and seen. Our only motive in this initiative is that we give opportunity to the young talented filmmakers and actors to come forward and show the world what Pakistan is made of,” Seja said.

Josh had its first world premier in Mumbai film festival (MAMI) and has been having various screenings in different cities of Canada and USA since the past few months. Writer and Journalist Ethan Casey writes about Josh on Dawn.com, “Americans are accustomed to seeing other countries, especially Pakistan, as refractions of our own national worries and self-regarding obsessions. That is our problem, not Pakistan’s, and Josh serves us well by declining to pander or spoon-feed. It is a very good film, well conceived and executed on a small budget, and the question in my mind as I left the cinema was whether and how it might be possible to shoehorn such a serious piece of Pakistani storytelling into the awareness of some measurable fraction of the millions who know Pakistan only through TV news and Hollywood movies such as Zero Dark Thirty.”

Speaking about her debut feature film, Josh, Iram Parveen Bilal, the film writer, director and producer said, “Despite having made films for six years, shorts films that have travelled around the world and have won awards, I now feel like a complete filmmaker because this one is a full length feature where you can buy popcorn and drinks and watch it on the magnificent big screens of the cinemas and share it with hundreds of others at the same time as this is the power and the strength of the cinema which reminds one of the humanity and love. How in one room, hundreds of people are crying and laughing together at the same time, this makes one realise that we all are the same. Come watch the film with passion and unity, this is an honest film made out of dedicated blood, sweat and tears and it is made for you Pakistan and it is made by Pakistan.”

The launch of “The Platform” was very much needed for the re-birth of a film industry which was under heavy rubble since past two decades. Hopefully, it will bring the new breed of cinema crowd as well as upcoming filmmakers of Pakistan who ready to tell their story to the world. And who wouldn’t want to watch good quality local productions and share their experience with dozens of others in a cinema?

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Comments (5)

May 8, 2013 10:22 am
This film sounds good. Will it also be available in other countries?
May 8, 2013 11:55 pm
when would we be able to buy the Original Cds for this film??
May 8, 2013 6:49 pm
i have made up my mind to watch every pakistani film that gets released SOMEBODY HAS TO SUPPORT THE INDUSTRY
May 8, 2013 9:23 pm
i dont know much about this movie but for the past one decade all Pakistani filmmakers have only three subjects, cruelty against women, anti- Islamism, presenting local barbaric culture as Islamic culture and anti Pakistanism.
Logical Thinker
May 10, 2013 6:27 am
If Pakistan can make good films, we Indians will definitely watch them in theaters. Khuda ke Liye and Bol were awesome movies. I assume both were made by the same film maker. Again those kind of movies can never be made in India as Muslims in India will boycott them as anti-Islam though they only show the bad things in the society (you will never see an Indian film maker daring to question the problem of population explosion or religious extremism which is a fact in both Indian and Pakistani societies)
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