News / Arts & Entertainment

Pakistani Hit Action Film Strikes a Nerve Over India

Pakistani Hit Action Film Strikes a Nerve Over Indiai
X
December 02, 2013 11:28 PM
Pakistan’s moribund film industry has been brought back to life with the action thriller “Waar," which translates roughly as “The Attack.” The film, shot in Pakistan, tells the story of a retired military hero who saves the country from a terrorist attack. But critics say the movie’s allusions to rival nuclear power India as the enemy only serves to deepen the antagonism between the two countries. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Karachi.
Sharon Behn
Pakistan’s moribund film industry has been brought back to life with the action thriller Waar, which translates roughly as “The Attack.” The film, shot in Pakistan, tells the story of a retired military hero who saves the country from a terrorist attack. But critics say the movie’s allusions to rival nuclear power India as the enemy only serves to deepen the antagonism between the two countries.
 
The Pakistani high-octane terrorist thriller film, Waar, is a huge hit.
 
Moviegoers applaud the film because it is based on Pakistan’s realities like the fight against terrorism, says distributor Nawab Hassan Siddique.
 
“In the history of Pakistan, there has never been such a huge hit, neither by an Indian film nor a Hollywood movie. The credit goes to Pakistan, that a Pakistani picture has earned such huge ticket sales," said  Siddique.
 
The film’s ex-special forces hero, Major Mujtaba, along with bloody interrogation scenes, are a big departure from typically popular Indian Bollywood dance movies.
 
And it's a hit at the box office - Pakistan's highest-grossing film ever.

Even though Waar never indicates where the “bad guys” are from, many moviegoers are sure they are from India.
 
“Obviously, 100 percent, because we have a number of proof of India’s involvement in Pakistan," said a moviegoer.

And that draws criticism. The perceived anti-India slant is not helpful when relations between the two countries are already tense, says military analyst Ayeesha Siddiqa.
 
“You don’t need these bunch of innocent citizens thinking the same way, they will end up supporting those radicals," said Siddiqa.
 
Writer and producer Hassan Waqas Rana says he wanted the film to spark conversation.
 
"It's a film. It’s not the strategic policy of the government of Pakistan. It’s a film that I have written in my own room. I may be 100 percent wrong, I may be 100 percent right, you never know. That's the whole point of a film," said Rana.
 
Rana dismisses comments that Pakistan’s powerful military helped fund the film. He acknowledges the army helped with logistics to give certain scenes a more realistic feel. But he says he funded the movie himself.
 
The success of Waar has reignited Pakistan’s film industry and some 10 other movies are now in the works. And Rana is taking his smash hit to the international market - and already planning a sequel.

You May Like

Anti-Terror Drills Highlight China’s Push Into Central Asia

China, Russia, several central Asian countries wrap up massive anti terrorism military drills in Inner Mongolia More

Erdogan’s First Step: Secure More Power in New Role in Turkey

Erdogan was sworn in as Turkey's first popularly elected president on Thursday; he picked former foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu as PM More

Pakistan Army Fails to Break Political Deadlock

PM Sharif claims he didn't ask army to defuse crisis; military rejects claim More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assaulti
X
Daniel Schearf
August 29, 2014 9:30 PM
After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assault

After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Growing Business Offers Paint with a Twist of Wine

Two New Orleans area women started a small business seven years ago with one thing in mind: to help their neighbors relieve the stress of coping with a hurricane's aftermath. Today their business, which pairs painting and a little bit of wine, has become one of the fastest growing franchises across the U.S. VOA’s June Soh met the entrepreneurs at their newest franchise location in the Washington suburbs.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Beyond Category

Pianist Myra Melford’s new CD “Life Carries Me This Way” features solo piano interpretations of drawings by modern artist Don Reich. She performs songs from the album, talks about turning art into music, and joins host Eric Felten in some Chicago boogie-woogie on "Beyond Category."