If you want to catch an entertaining and impressive Pakistani action film, WAAR is the one to see. This film is Pakistan’s most successful film ever grossing over $5 million dollars but most importantly creating an expectation for audiences worldwide that there’s for more to come from Pakistan’s Film Industry.
Made on a modest budget of 1.6 million dollars, the film gives you a Hollywood blockbuster with drama, great action and high end production.
The film is directed by Bilal Lashari who’s making an impressive debut. WAAR, is a film set in Pakistan focussing on a Special Forces agent called Mujtaba. The character is played by Shaan Shaid. The agent works to fight terrorism, however when his family is killed by a terrorist called Ramal, he goes into retirement. The film picks up when there’s an imminent attack on Pakistan.
The cinematography, editing and directing of Bilal Lashari is key to the success. The film is edited tightly, moving seamlessly through scenes. The shot designs are impressive and appropriate. The soundtrack flows in Urdu and English gliding between moods, times and storyline.
The casting of the film uses experienced actors with new. The only element that lets the film down is some of the dialog. I felt the dialog could have been expressed it in a more natural way and not so contrived. But the film sidesteps this weakness, offering so much more. You see parts of Pakistan, the politics, violence, wealth and the fight for power. Shaan Shahid produces an impressive performance. His maturity and good looks give the storyline credibility. He plays the part perfectly and holds the film together.
The film really explores the contemporary issues facing Pakistan and how hard the armed forces work to protect their country. It shares a viewpoint that could only be presented by this generation that’s a mixture of East and West.
The film offers the actresses roles with credibility and strength, there’s little room in this film for women in distress, and they have a purpose. In particular Ayesha Khan and Meesha Shafi with supporting roles are women with skills, intellect and sophistication. In no way are the actresses exploited. Any scenes of romance are handled with care and limited shots are used so that actions are implied.
The film relies on its visuals to take the audience on a journey. The moving, sweeping and variety of close up shots give the film pace and an urgency that help to share the story. The choices are thoughtful, creative and skilful.
WAAR is an entertaining and enjoyable film although violent in some parts; it’s worth watching and getting out there to support Pakistan’s Film Industry.