Movie review: Lahore Se Aagey-
by Hiba Usmani.
There was a time when people would actively avoid watching Pakistani movies; now, the Lollywood landscape has become incredibly competitive with an increasingly large audience. The expectations of Pakistani cinegoers have soared, and with every new release, the hype surrounding it is palpable.
Lahore Se Aagey is no different: the sequel of the successful comedy film ‘Karachi Se Lahore’, and Saba Qamar’s (almost) debut film was anxiously awaited. While watching the film, however, the only thing anyone was anticipating was the end. The only thing this film could possibly be competing on is absurdity, and this comes from the industry that produced an X-rated film on Desi Dracula.
The film opens with Moti (Yasir Hussain) being chased by some goons hell-bent on killing him on orders of his aunt. He runs into musician, Tara (Saba Qamar) who just stormed out of a concert following an argument with her boyfriend.
The two have a series of arguments which end with Moti getting a ride with Tara. From there, the two begin their journey which involves cheesy one-liners, illogical situations, abrupt character changes, and a pointless love story within a tiny span of time.
The movie ends with Moti confronting his vengeful aunt in the most elaborately ridiculous and unrealistic set of scenes ever seen on a cinema screen.
From the fresh sights of Swat to electrifying concerts, the use of greenery and colour in the film is spectacular and makes one truly appreciate the amount of investment put into technology by the makers. Even the dressing is remarkable: Saba Qamar delights the eye in both, fashionable jeans and colourful cholis.
And with these two or three points, the good points about the film dry out.
LSA proves that not even the best actors with the most awards can overcome sloppy writing. Yasir Hussain may have delighted us in his last film with Moti’s funny one-liners and comedic relief. However, this year Moti proves to be nothing more than an irritating vending machine, blurting out cheap jokes one after another.
While that may have worked in KSL, Moti does not have the benefit of an ensemble to juxtapose his ridiculousness.
Saba Qamar is a huge let down: the actress has immense talent to offer, but her character was so poorly developed that the she had to resort to overacting. Comparing her excessive emotions to Hussain’s calmer performance, the opposing techniques left the audience feeling confused about how serious the situation actually was.
While Qamar and Hussain shared some moments of chemistry, it was overshadowed by the poorly written dialogues.
The writers clearly chose quick and cheap laughs over actually building an actual climax or providing texture and dimensions to the characters. We are never offered actual explanations: how Moti and Tara end up at certain events, how Moti’s uncle manages to get better, and how Moti sees Tara at the brothel?
These are just some questions that we cannot possibly hope to be answered.
While the cinematography offered some beautiful landscapes, the unruly amount of bird-eye views and slow motion shots made one’s head spin. Couple that with the lurching from shot to shot, it is clear that LSA was in desperate need of a better director and editor.
Silly, unrealistic, and just plain asinine. That is how one would describe Lahore Se Aagey. Come on Lollywood, you’re better than this.