Producer: IRK Films, Reham Khan & ARY Films
Director: Azfar Jafri
Written by: Osman Khalid Butt
Music by: Ahmed Ali, Taha Malik, Salim Sulaiman
Cast: Armeena Rana Khan, Bilal Ashraf, Ali Rehman Khan, Hania Amir, Usman Mukhtar, Ajab Gul, Mishi Khan, Nayyer Ejaz, Jalal Khan, Fahad Ali Panni
Janaan promised to be a romantic comedy which would highlight the Pakhtoon culture. All the messages the film attempted to convey are relevant but does it manage to encapsulate the beauty of Swat and the attributes of the Pakhtoon culture? I would say not! The film challenges clichés about Pakhtoons but are the portrayals realistic or too modern? The best thing about this film is not its story but those two actors who make it worthwhile and its music. Bilal Ashraf and Hania Amir’s performances and perhaps good looks are the main reason why the viewers will have a reason to look forward to their upcoming projects and sit through Janaan. Janaan‘s soulful music adds some life to an otherwise lifeless story.
Janaan opens with a verse from a Pashtu poet, which talks about attributes of Pakhtoon people. This opening raises the expectations of the viewers because all of a sudden you are looking forward to a very emotional drama which will have something bigger to offer instead of a romantic comedy.
The film opens with Meena (Armeena Rana Khan) packing her suitcases to leave for Pakistan. She is going to meet her family in Swat after 11 years of living in Canada. She goes there with a lot of preconceived notions. This opening gave the impression that the story was about Meena finding an identity in Swat, discovering her people and falling in love with them. All this eventually happened but at the end of the film you don’t feel like this was Meena’s story, this is Asfandyar’s (Bilal Ashraf) story more than it is Meena’s therefore it would have been much better if the story started in Swat and not in Canada! The first song Jhoom Le was beautifully shot; this song introduced the viewers to the natural beauty of Swat and its people. You expect to see more of this natural beauty as the story progresses forward but it doesn’t happen!
How many of you watched this film? Do share your thoughts about it.