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30 Mar

Travelling with Tapu

By Aamna Haider Isani   Fashion photographer, RJ in the Dark Room, academic and overall persona grata, Tapu Javeri also turned out to be quite an ‘attractive’ travel companion on our recent trip to Dubai. Here’s what he attracted…   “Oh my God, are you Brandon?” a young girl with an American accent gushed, as we waited for our boarding passes at the Emirates counter at the Karachi Airport. Tapu, Fareshteh (my friend and much-needed Encyclopedia on all things SRK) and I were travelling to Dubai as I had to interview Shah Rukh Khan, on a promotional trip for Fan, and Tapu was to do the needful visual coverage. We were going to meet the world’s biggest megastar but Tapu, it turned out (with...
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29 Mar

Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice – The Haute Review

  Despite what the critics say, Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice will be a super blockbuster hit. It has reached a whopping $160 million opening at the box office. What that means is that regardless of whether the film is good or not, everyone will, and should, watch the movie at least once.   And why wouldn’t they? It’s the ultimate battle between two of DC’s iconic characters, Batman and Superman, and while Christian Bale was the love of our life as Batman in Christopher Nolan’s series, Ben Affleck’s character portrays Batman closer to the comic books.   But that’s all this movie has to offer. Which is depressing because the movie could have done so much more! You have a plot, characters, a stellar cast,...
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24 Mar

Kapoor & Sons: The Haute Review

  The simpletons amidst us don’t ask for much beyond an entertaining movie, whether it is the visually engrossing Bajirao Mastani, the technically superior (Star Wars) or a simple animation like Kung Fu Panda. So when something as pleasant as Kapoor & Sons comes along, it’s a no brainer that the film will guarantee entertainment, if nothing else.   Luckily, like more Karan Johar productions, K&S provides a little more than a good looking cast working its way through a foreign location and fantastic soundtrack. This one gives us characters to relate to, enjoy and endear.   There’s really nothing original about the plot; we have seen the inside out of dysfunctional families from Kal Ho Naa Ho, Kabhi Alvidaa Naa Kehna and more recently,...
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14 Mar

Fawad Khan, live in India

Catching up with the man of the moment, who’s on a whirlwind tour promoting the upcoming Kapoor & Sons in India.   It’s almost impossible to remember Asher Hussain, Zaroon Junaid and Bond G Kaboom, if you can recall that completely clumsy clunk of a comedian who danced around trees and wooed Jutti behind bougainvillea hedges in the backyard. It is almost impossible but also important to recollect characters of Fawad Khan’s past because they have all defined the man, the actor and the huge star that he’s evolved as today. Between them and Yuvraj Vikram Singh Rathore, his aristocratic film debut in Khoobsurat or the self-deprecating Oochi, in hilarious anecdotal commercials popular on television these days, everything rolls up to make way...
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28 Feb

Bachaana: the ‘haute’ review

There are several reasons why Bachaana works. First of all, the lead characters are delightful. Vicky, played by Mohib Mirza, is the obvious star. Tall, dark and handsome, he’s easy on the eyes, confident in front of the camera and he effortlessly carries the film from the beginning to the end. He has a fun script to work with and it all adds up. Sanam Saeed, despite not being at her very best, has a strong character to play with. Contrary to our first impressions of the film and its tagline (Read: Aalia, an Indian girl, is not a damsel in distress and does not need a man to save her. She’s quite the trouper and actually saves him...
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21 Feb

Bachaana: Can someone save the helpless woman…again?

  There is a line in the trailer of the movie, Bachaana, which goes something like this: "Larki Pakistani ho, ya Hindustani, larki larki hoti hai." We aren't entirely sure what the writers meant when they wrote this dialogue for Mohib Mirza's character. Is it trying to strengthen friendship between Pakistanis and Indians by claiming that nationality doesn't matter? Or is it trying to say that a woman is weak and helpless, no matter what country she comes from, and deserves to be saved?   While the movie is yet to be released, there are certain expectations from the movie based on what we've heard and seen in the trailers. The movie is based around two strangers: the 'hero' is a Pakistani man who...
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16 Feb

When the stars shone under a desert moon

  The PSL Opening Ceremony witnessed cricket greats as well as stars from all walks of entertainment, flown in to support their teams.   No matter which team won, the victory would be Pakistan’s. This is the incredible feeling with which the Pakistan Super League kicked off on February 4 in Dubai. And this is my account of events that led up to the Opening Ceremony at Dubai Stadium. Ali Zafar with Shaniera Akram and Frieha Altaf     PSL on ground looked like a celebration more than a competition. Carlton Hotel – where the teams were staying – was a panorama of bright uniforms, all five of them speckling the area cheerfully. Scheduled to leave for the Dubai Stadium at 5pm for the opening ceremony, the...
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11 Feb

The world for women (according to Pakistani Morning Shows)

  Morning show hosts have now acquired a status beyond normal humans. They are now motivational speakers, cooks, singers, wedding planners, therapists, social workers- they are one of the most revered personalities on television. Therefore, what they say matters to a lot of people. And usually, they will say things that they think matter to others.   Naturally, a person of such power and influence will use his or her time to spread important messages to women (this is an understood stereotype that morning shows are usually watched by women because only men work and have jobs.) Therefore, I narrowed down some things that seem to be on the top of everyone’s minds on these shows.   Raitas. You know, that tasty yoghurt dip that...
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9 Feb

"Mor Mahal is the story of resilient, fiercely powerful women."

Sarmad Khoosat talks about Mor Mahal, Pakistan’s first fantasy drama in 25 years.   Just think of the elements that are coming together. Conceptualized by Imran Aslam, Mor Mahal has been scripted by Sarmad Sehbai, directed by man-of-the-moment (or should we say ‘Manto’ of the moment?) Sarmad Khoosat and it’s an A&B Production, brought to screens by Babar Javed (makers of Manto). Follow that up with rock-star Umair Jaswal’s TV debut as Nawab Asif Jahan, Meesha Shafi as Farrukh Zaad, one of his three scheming wives, and a stellar cast including Sania Saeed, Hina Bayat, Ali Saleem and many more in intriguing roles and it’s no wonder then that Mor Mahal is becoming a point of obsession even though its first episode...
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