LONDON: Eros International screened on Thursday critically acclaimed
Pakistani film "Bol” at a theatre at the company’s headquarters here in
Manchester Square to a selected group of showbiz critics from the
British Asian ethnic media.
Directed by Shoaib Mansoor of ‘Khuda Ke Liye’ fame, starring Atif
Aslam, Iman Ali, Mahira Khan, Manzar Sehbai, the film has won plaudit
from critics in Pakistan and India and has seen the record number of
viewers turning up at the cinemas. The film is being released in the UK
on 30th of August in 21 sites, including the prestigious Empire
Bol is a gripping drama dealing with harsh and real life issues of
the status of women, the underclass of homosexuals, sectarian tension
lines, the reality of red light areas in the heart of Pakistan, the
hypocrisy of the clergy, police corruption, conservatism and attitude
towards women. Killing in the name of honour is a subject in the film
which has become a hot topic in the west in recent years.
Promoted by Geo films and Jang Group, there is a huge excitement in
Britain about the film as the entertainment columns, especially of
ethnic media, have been mention the success of the film for many weeks
Leading showbiz critics who watched the film here were full of praise
for the acclaimed director who has been credited with dealing with
highly controversial and taboo subjects with effortless brilliance.
Asjad Nazir, top film critic and renowned entertainment writer told
The News that the film is "tremendously brave and very powerful”.
"Bol is a thought provoking film that should be watched by everyone.
Apart from being a gripping drama, this is an important film that sheds
light on a number of important issues. Great performances from the
entire cast elevate the drama to a higher level.
"The only thing that will prevent this from being a film that crosses
over is the fact that it’s too long and that it could have been better
technically. Hopefully this will be a first proper step towards
resurrecting Pakistani cinema.”
Ashanti Omkar, Bollywood editor for BBC Publishing, found the film
adult-themed and shocking in the sense that it deals with the real life
issues of South Asian culture with up-front bravery. "The acting is good
and the heroine of the film (Humaima Malik) is really good with what
she did but I would have liked to see happier and progressive side of
Pakistan but kudos to the director for creating the Hakeem character
(Manzar Sehbai) we hate so much.”
Raj & Pablo, presenters of Love Bollywod on BBC Asian Network and
B4U Bollywood Showdown, described the film as "very powerful, gripping
and full of fantastic performances”.
"We loved it, the director excels in this film and visually its
stunning too. Bol presents the social issues in a positive way. It
leaves it to the viewers to decide what is right and what is wrong. The
release of this film is a plus point for the Lollywood and shows the
massive Pakistani talent is there, there are brilliant directors and
actors but their work need to be highlighted more. The film is slightly
long and we think it could have been edited a bit more.”
Amit Roy, a veteran London based Bollywood critic and author of the
Asian Rich List, loved the film and was impressed and gave the film "8
out of 10”. "It deal with difficult issues in a very modern way.
The central character of Hakim is trying to do his best for his
family but he is a prisoner of the circumstances, cultures and
traditions. In Shoaib Mansoor and Bol characters, we have Asian stars.
"I was in Lahore a few months ago and the film reminded me of the
rich texture and colours of the beautiful old city. The film also shows
that the film-making quality of Pakistani shouldn’t be underestimated.”
Amer Shoaib of Cinema Journal said that more films like Bol should
come out of Pakistan to the wider audience to show how good Pakistanis
actors and directors are. "The film should receive great reception
wherever it goes for it has all the hallmarks and the characteristics of
a successful film.”
See The EXCLUSIVE photos related to Atif aslam's Bol