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Laal Kabootar Review



3.5 stars out of 5.0

Pakistani film ‘Laal Kabootar’ is an extremely good film when compared to several recent films being showcased in cinema. Amid the drought of desi content for our cinemas following the self-enforced ban on Bollywood, the deserted cinema may be able to find some sigh of relief which Laal Kabootar has the capability to provide.

The film revolves around several characters who are living entirely different lives from each other, yet destiny pulls them where their paths crossed and what happens next is what this story is all about.

The story of Laal Kabootar is very relatable to everyday life of Karachi, from mobile phone snatching to target killing etc. crimes that are very much part of this city’s identity now. For Karachites, after ‘Na Maloom Afraad’ this film has something that they witness every now and then. However, unlike ‘Na Maloom Afraad’ the director choses to keep it organic and rough and with no item number to glamorize the movie.

Without giving away too many spoilers, ‘Laal Kabootar’ story revolves around multiple characters, we have Aliya Malik (Mansha Pasha) who is desperately looking for her husband’s killer, there is a cab driver who wants to run away from his chaotic life to his dream destination Dubai, there is an inspector Ibrahim (Rashid Farooqi) who is just like a common policeman corrupt but a pure family man and then there is Saleem Mairaj, who comes in the later part of the story but leave the audience mesmerized with his powerful performance.

Director Kamal Khan who makes his debut with ‘Laal Kabootar’ makes sure that he focuses on character development. He didn’t try to push any one unnecessarily in to the frame nor tried to pull anything out. He stayed away from adding masala in the name of dance numbers and usual romantic relationships, which makes this movie much more interesting.

The duration of this film is just 94 minutes so it has to run without interval. Therefore,  the movie cannot be divided in to parts, which is actually helpful for the story.  Since it starts very slowly and takes time in gaining momentum and puts the audience in to the 4th gear towards the conclusion.

Saleem Mairaj in his role as a hired hitman, played it with utmost brutality. He doesnt allows the audience to take a breath when he is on screen. Although, his entry in the film is towards the very end and yet he manages to hijack the best performance out of it.

Rashid Farooqi as the inspector Ibrahim, showed another impeccable performance. A typical policeman who pays more attention to financial gains rather than serving the public, he is rude to people and uses stereotypical police techniques for his investigations. On the other hand, he is a family man, he loves his wife and daughter. His goal is to secure enough money to have a nice apartment for his family.

Adeel (Ahmed Ali Akbar) as a cab driver performs a bad boy character smoothly. He doesn’t try to be a hero, he remains limited to his character, uses the same street language like any other and keeps it simple.

Aaliya Malik (Mansha Pasha) is a surprise package. This is her second movie, a first in lead role. As wife of a slain journalist, she portrays her character very well. She mostly remains calm but shows enough character to show a storm brewing inside her mind. A strong woman who doesn’t want to runaway from her problems, as she told her mother who was leaving for USA. Her enthusiasm to get to her husband’s killer and for the purpose dealing with a cabbie is remarkable. I think this performance will certainly open doors for her in the film industry.

The look and feel of the characters were very well crafted. The wardrobe, looks and style were all complementing to the story thanks to Mariam Azmi the audience will not experience never see any over the top scene.

This movie is not flawless, it does have few loopholes in storyline. however,  keeping in view the budget constraints, duration and inexperience, the film has to be applauded for bringing real world to the silver screen.

Hania Chima and Kamil Chima the producer duo of the film needs to be appreciated for crafting a low budget yet remarkable cinema for content starved screens of Pakistan.


Cinepax announces the launch of first ever STARZ PLAY Short Film Competition




[Lahore, 16th July 2019]:After the successful launch of STARZ PLAY by Cinepax, Pakistan’s favorite entertainment company STARZ PLAY by Cinepax,  has launched STARZ PLAY Short Film Competition (SSFC) with the final event taking place on the xx of July with the sole intent to bring the young and aspiring filmmakers into the limelight and give them the opportunity to produce STARZ PLAY Originals and accelerate their careers.

The impact of the competition has created a global reach and garnered intense local interest, attracting more than 3,000 submissions from all over the world and over 200 entries from within Pakistan making SSFC the biggest film competition of the country.

Arif BaigMohamad, the Chairman of STARZ PLAY by Cinepax said “SSFC has been our dream since the inception of the company and we have been working on the short-film concept for a long while now.  We couldn’t be more proud and excited to have conducted this competition in such a successful way that it has become the biggest short film competition in Pakistan. I would like to take this opportunity to commend the talented youth of Pakistan to have taken part in such big numbers and to have trusted STARZ PLAY by Cinepax.”

Shortlisted films will be screened at the final event and the winner will be decided by a jury of judges from the entertainment and film industry. The winner will get an exclusive contract to produce a STARZ PLAY by Cinepax original web series. All entries will be judged by a panel of film and media experts and will then be uploaded on the STARZ PLAY by Cinepax app and website.

About StarzPlay :

STARZ PLAY by Cinepax, is a subscription-based video on demand (SVOD) service that offers an impressive library of blockbuster Hollywood movies, award-winning box sets, documentaries, kids’ entertainment and Pakistani content.

The platform utilizes advanced technology to provide a premium viewing experience with full HD content sourced from some of the largest Hollywood and Bollywood studios, such as Warner Bros, MGM, STARZ/ Lionsgate, Red Chillies Entertainment, UTV Motion pictures. 

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In conversation with Hamza Tanveer



Setting the standards high with his impeccably charming looks

We had a short heart to heart conversation with this cutie Hamza Tanveer and we bet there is a lot you would love to read about him. Certainly, we are not afraid to say that he is already on the road of success to be the next sensation in town.

Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I’m Hamza Tanveer. I’m a Vocalist and I’m one of the veterans of Nescafe Basement.

How did you get into Nescafé Basement?
Through LIVE auditions. Nescafe Basement held LIVE auditions for their Season 2 in my University (UCP) back in 2013. I was selected by Xulfi (Zulfiqar Jabbar Khan) as a Lead Vocalist. That was one lucky day of my life.

Before Nescafé Basement, how did you find out that there was a singer inside you?
I actually realized that when I got selected in Nescafe Basement LIVE auditions. Before that, I was just an introvert and more of a bathroom singer LOL. Also, I never took part in any College/University events as I was too shy to do so.

How did you all get together to produce music? Where did it start?
All the artists were selected from all over Pakistan through LIVE auditions. After that, we were called by Xulfi Bhai for our initial orientation at Nescafe Basement. There, we had our first musical jam and on our first attempt, we knew that we all were at the right place. Thanks to Xulfi bhai for mentoring us all these years. He unearthed and discovered the talent in me and motivated me to get what I could ever dream of.

Was it like you always wanted to be a singer?
No! My parents always wanted me to become an engineer. So, my focus was on my studies initially till Nescafe Basement happened. But music was within me. I used to sing it with my only friend who had a guitar. Music was always something I loved doing in my spare time and the passion grew stronger by time.

Has it become your full-time profession?
No! I tried to convince myself and my family…but considering financial issues, and other social problems, I couldn’t cope up with that! Now I do a job and also do the music side by side! Although I do hope that there may come a time in Pakistan when artists like me would be able to opt music as their full-time job.

How is your experience working as a group?
It has taught me a lot! I had no musical education/background before NB. So, for me, it was a great learning experience working with such a talented lot. We’ve not just made good music altogether but we’ve made long-lasting friendships also. For now, it’s everything I could ever ask for.

Are you intending to move towards Coke Studio?
Definitely, if I am ever given a chance and anything I can contribute to music with what I acquire, I’m up for it!

Who is your favorite Pakistani Singer/ your inspiration?
Considering genres that I sing or like, I can take all the names of legendary artists of Pakistan. Everyone’s been my inspiration as I grew up watching/listening to them on TV and wanted to be like them. 🙂
If you still insist, I’d say Mekaal Hassan Band, Shafqat Amanat Ali and Sajjad Ali are my favorites. 🙂

Considering your good looks, would you like to get into modeling or acting?
Acting, NO! Modeling can be done!

Other than music, what do you like to do the most?
Eat, Sleep, Work, Repeat!

What’s your comfort blanket?
I enjoy spending time alone.

What is your relationship status?
Single for now!

If you could sing with one singer that is not alive, who would it be?
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan

Tell us about your future projects?
I’m working on my two new songs. I would share updates as I get done with everything.

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Hareem Farooq breaks the stereotypical image of a dulhan in the newly released trailer of Heer Maan Ja and we can’t wait for the movie now!



By Hina Ghaffar

The megahit on-screen couple of Hareem Farooq and Ali Rehman Khan are back together in IRK Films & Arif Lakhani Films’ upcoming movie ‘Heer Maan Ja’, that’s all set to release worldwide this Eid-ul-Azha.
Knowing that the movie is a project from the super talented makers of Siyaah, Janaan and Parchi, we already couldn’t wait to the see what this movie will bring us. But after watching the electrifying trailer of the movie that has just been released, we are now completely on edge! Eid-ul-Azha can’t arrive sooner!

What a terrific visual! The trailer is a perfect glimpse of the epic roller-coaster ride Heer Maan Ja is expected to be! You can find romance, you can see action, and you can also find yourself smiling at the hilarious scenes from the movie! Also…how adorable does Hareem Farooq look in that stunning orange and pink lehenga? We honestly can’t take our eyes off of her!

Hareem seems to be breaking the image of all stereotypical brides with her peppy character in Heer Maan Ja. Heer is giving us the vibes of a runaway bride, however, that’s just a small part of the film. The first look of Heer Maan Ja divulges Hareem Farooq as the coolest bride ever. Has anyone noticed the silver sneakers she’s donning underneath?
Hareem’s character looks very different from Eman in Parchi! Heer seems like a very bubbly and lively character, standing next to a rather nervous-looking Kabir.

Heer Maan Ja is going to be a romantic comedy with a punch of laughter, emotions, thrill and action sequences. Featuring a stellar cast, exceptionally talented directors and a brilliant production team, Heer Maan Ja is going to fill our Bari Eid with a whole lot of entertainment.

‘A love story that has a past’ – and we wonder what past is that? The trailer makes us question quite a lot of things; why were they separated to begin with? Why does Heer look like a run-away bride? Why is Kabir asking her for forgiveness?

We can’t wait for the Bari Eid to find out now!

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