One of the highly anticipated telefilm’s Laal premiered on Geo TV last night. Featuring Bilal Abbas Khan, Kubra Khan and Mirza Gohar Rasheed, it has garnered positive feedback from viewers. Directed by Haseeb Hassan, the film irrespective of its technical faults is smooth sailing.
Haseeb is one of the finest directors in the country and so, anything associated with him instantly raises the expectations and this telefilm was no different. His vision shines through the narrative and does not enforce patriotism or overenthusiasm which is crucial in a patriotic film. Many times, writers and director overdo the reinforcement of love for your country, but this film steers clear from that. Umera Ahmed is a true genius and this script is a testimony to her sophisticated screenwriting. With powerful dialogues like “agar Yousaf abba ka heera hai toh main kya hoon?” (if Yousuf is father’s gem then what am I to him?), she humanizes the characters and makes them relatable. The dynamic duo of Haseeb and Umera create magic on TV and it was worth missing the other weekly dramas.
The story realistically shows an underprivileged boy’s dream to be an army officer. His fascination with the uniform and army boots is adorable and truly makes you wonder how many such aspirational boys and girls never get the opportunity to turn their dreams into a reality. The story is an amalgamation of love, passion, greed and servitude to the country.
While the film deals with certain technical glitches, especially transitions between the scenes which seem abrupt almost creating a momentary disconnect, the film’s narrative, direction and actors compensate for it. Bilal as Behram, Kubra as Zarmeena and Gohar as Yousaf are so beautifully woven into their characters that you are convinced they are who they’re portraying, without any disconnect. Saleem Mairaj and Iffat Omar, who play Bilal’s parents, are actors par excellence, but their tribal accent seems unconvincing at various points.
It is worthy to mention the stellar childhood portrayals of the lead stars; Jibraiyl Ahmed as Behram outshines in his acting and dialogue delivery, Zarmeena and Yousuf as adolescents create the perfect character development which once again proves the prowess of both, the writer and director.
It might not be a cinematic audiovisual experience, but overall this film not only creates a resurgence of passion and love for Pakistan, but it also brings together the finest cast and crew making it an emotional and convincing journey of almost 2 hours. Laal deserves all the praises it is receiving.