September, the 9th month of solar calendar, is considered oppressive in some ways, according to palmistry and numerology. But for Pakistani cinema, September and number 9 has proved to be very blessed as three of our films – Chambaili, Ishq Khuda, Josh — has won awards in international film festivals and one, Zinda Bhaag, has been selected for sending in for Oscar foreign language category.
Chambaili got four awards in Special Jury, Award of Excellence, International Best Film, Overall Winner categories at Film Festival for Inspiration, Peace and Equality 2013, according to their Facebook page. It is a thoughtful story on Pakistan’s present circumstances; wakefulness of youngsters; significance of ballot paper and thumb impression; dirty politics and power games; and the miserable condition of a common man, the most of all. But this serious story also had a saltish flavor of music, dance, and romance. Chambaili comprehensively showed up the importance of change through vote. It brilliantly created a wave of alertness in the society and proved that Pakistan can also make movies on thought provoking subjects.
Ishq Khuda, a much-awaited venture by Shehzad Rafique, has also got an opportunity to premiere in Bollywood Festival Norway from 6 – 13 September. It’s shown along with Indian films like Raanjhna, Life of Pie, Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani etc. According to the Facebook page of Ishq Khuda, it got standing ovation. Earlier, Ishq Khuda has been premiered in Punjabi International Film Festival (PIFF) 2013 in Canada. Till the submission of this story, it’s being played in theaters in Punjab circuit.
Josh has also premiered in North American Festival and also nominated in multiple categories. It is nominated for Best Political Film at the prestigious Film fest Hamburg. They also got a chance to screen at Bollywood Festival Norway this September. It was included in the list of films given at the festival official website but their Facebook page didn’t confirm it. Now they are eyeing to have more screenings and film festivals in coming months. Josh story is based on the struggle of a young female teacher whose grand mother gets missing, and many other people who are also fighting against feudalism and cruelty. It’s the only film this year which is directed by a female. Iram is also one of the film makers who have made efforts to change the usual and traditional look of Pakistani cinema.
And now last but not the least, ZindaBhaag, which is sent in for the Foreign Language Category of Oscar 2014. Directorial debut of Farjad Nabi, and Meenu Guar, Zinda Bhaag is in news these days. Much is being talked about it on all sorts of media. ARY Digital and Mast FM103 are advertising and promoting it as media partners. It’s being successfully played in theaters across Pakistan right now and people are watching it with fondness.
So the 9th month, September brought many surprises and blessings for Pakistani Cinema! We hope this journey of success, which is getting smoother with the passage of time, going to continue and bring improvement and prosperity to Pakistani cinema!