LAHORE: - Pakistani cinema is blessed with a few talented directors who have given us movies that are timeless classics. There is a revival of cinema and film industries in Pakistan. Pakistani films are not just for the local audiences but are reaching out to audiences worldwide. They are not only going to international film festival but also trying to bag Oscars. Nadeem Beyg’s multi starrer Punjab Nahi Jaungi turned the tables with box-office collections surpassing Rs 500 million worldwide.  As the year 2017 comes to an end, here’s a look at the hits and misses of Pakistani films:

LOW: What was set to be a box-office game changer Mahira Khan’s Verna the much hyped film of the year failed to impress the audience. Due to the non-issuance of censor certificate by censor board, Verna’s premiere in Lahore was first cancelled. The film opened nationwide with grossing Rs 6.8 million, collecting Rs 27 million in its first weekend, and making the total of Rs 40 million in its first week. The film has grossed Rs 40 million from overseas market, and Rs 50.35 million in Pakistan, for a total of more than Rs 90.35 million worldwide.

HIGH: With 100 percent profit rate, Punjab Nahi Jaungi starring Humayun Saeed and Mehwish Hayat was a clear winner at the box-office. The mega budget movie received an overwhelming response from cinemagoers nationally and internationally and had the best opening weekend for any Lollywood movie this year. The film crossed the Rs 150 million gross after its opening weekend. It collected Rs 210 million within a week of its release. It became the first Pakistani film to cross Rs 300 million within 10 days. According to the box-office details the film grossed approximately Rs 170 million from overseas market in its four week run, and approximately Rs 310 million in its 13th week run domestically, for a total collection of about Rs 500million worldwide.

LOW: Pakistan’s first super hero film Project Ghazi had a super disastrous start when it crashed at its premiere in Karachi. Superstar Humayun Saeed playing the male lead in the film was so disappointed that he left the show midway fuming over how bad was the editing.

“There were so many technical issues and the film background sound was not good. I left the premiere after half an hour and convinced the producers to delay the dates of the film release because I was not satisfied with the final product of Project Ghazi. So, we decided to release the film after four months,” said Humayun Saeed.

LOW: Directed by Hassan Rana Yalghaar didn’t manage to make good business on the box-office. The film was based on a true story about the 76 hours of successful military operation conducted in the Piochar region of Swat district. It was about the young, passionate officers and soldiers whose patriotism knew no bounds.  The film has managed to earn Rs180 million worldwide.

HIGH: Directed by Farhan Alam, written and produced by Mashood Qadri Sawwan was based on a true story of a disabled child who lives in a valley in the mountains of Balochistan rejected by his father, intimidated by society, harassed by friends and left alone due to his disability. The film won ‘Best Foreign Language Feature Film’ award at the Madrid International Film Festival 2017 and the ‘Best Film’ and ‘Best Soundtrack Award’ at Salento International Film Festival in Italy.

LOW: Sahir Lodhi’s Raasta released on 31st March this year opened to a variety of negative reviews. The film, made on a budget of Rs85 million, managed to make a profit of only Rs2 million on the very first day of its release.

 Many film critics penned down the film reviews of Raasta and most of them criticised the film with negative comments declaring it as a flop production. The response, apparently, didn’t go well with Lodhi hence he decided to hit back at the critics. At a press conference he spoke about the matter and especially retaliated against the comments that stated: ‘Sahir is a cheap actor and has cheap fans.’ He yelled and questioned the individuals, that who gave them the right to differentiate between the audiences. He said, “I am standing with the people of Pakistan.” He further asked, “How can you call them cheap.”

LOW: The cast of Maula Jatt 2 has been accused of copyrights violation. Director and producer Serwar Bhatti of 1979 film Maula Jatt had moved the petition through his counsel saying that his client is the producer of Punjabi film Maula Jatt and holds all the rights to this movie including title and cinematographic works and the censorship certificate was also issued by Central Film Censor Board, Islamabad in the name of petitioner as a producer. He said that the petitioner has obtained registration of the copyrights in the cinematographic work slide certificate No.33742.  The petitioner said that the respondents have no right to use the title, script, characters, dialogue, poetry, music etc in respect of this work but the respondents Bilal Lashari, Chief Executive Encyclomedia PR Ammara Hikmat and others have been infringing the petitioner’s legal rights in this matter.

LOW: Last but not least Namaloom Afraad2 proved to be dud at the box-office despite having a powerful star cast. After a month of run, Punjab Film Censor Board too issued a notification against the film that called for its suspension in Punjab theatres citing ‘persistent complaints from different quarters’ as its reason. The film managed to collect Rs 230 million worldwide. 

LOW: Shaan Shahid’s latest film Arth 2 which was a remake of Mahesh Bhatt’s 1982 Arth failed to impress critics and moviegoers. With a hit combination of Uzma Hassan and Shaan Shahid, Arth 2 was expected to break a few records at the box-office. But unlike the previous films of this year, it failed to weave any magic. The film has collected around Rs 13.5 million at the end of 5 days.

LOW: Set in the midst of Karachi’s true spirit, ‘Androonshehar – walled city’ as we call in Lahore, the acclaimed Rangreza musical brought together the vibrant nature of the city of lights in a compact cinematic experience for the cinemagoers. Rangreza managed to collect a total of Rs 12.9 million at the local box office at the end of 5 days.