Movie Name: Jawani Phir Nahi Ani
Release Date: September 25, 2015
Director: Nadeem Baig
Review by: Momin Ali Munshi
They say actions speak louder than words and this statement could not be any truer for the dynamic Humayun Saeed who, in the form of ‘Jawani Phir Nahi Ani’, has given the film industry something to celebrate. While others only spoke of making films, he in a span of three years, has churned two films already. His maiden production, ‘Main Hoon Shahid Afridi’, which released two years back, gave the local audiences a taste of commercial cinema which was and to some extent is missing from the film scene. The film did get some tongues wagging but at the end of the day the audiences approved of the film and this was motivation enough for the dashing hero to move on.
He vowed to make another film which would be better and grander than MHSA, and keeping true to his promise he started working on something which we all now know as ‘Jawani Phir Nahi Ani’. It would not be wrong to say that he has given us this film which I believe will re-write all the rules of the game and will be used as a benchmark when it comes to defining good masala films.
But before moving to the film, I would like to address those naysayers who will challenge this film by comparing it to the likes of ‘Moor’ and will make bewildering claims. All I would like to say is that you cannot make such comparisons as these films belong to two completely different genres. It’s like complaining why doesn’t my pasta taste more like my daal chawal? It’s outrageous. As for the debate regarding what a ‘good film’ is and what ‘deserves’ to be a hit, well lets leave that to the audiences. If you ask me, I strongly believe that we need a healthy mix of commercial and art cinema as only then will our industry get its deserved recognition and will grow. Making films which win us critical acclaim is great, but only making such films won’t do us much good too. So for every Moor or Manto we need a Jawani Phir Nahi Ani.
Coming back to the film, here we go.
The first half tells the story of three married friends Saif (Hamza Ali Abbasi), BB (Ahmed Ali Butt) and Sheikh (Vasay Chowdhry) who all have dominating wives and unhealthy marriages. Comes into the picture Sherry (Humayun Saeed), a divorce lawyer, who plans a boys only trip to Bangkok which is meant to bring back some fun in the lives of the three henpecked husbands. Sherry falls in love with Marina (Mehwish Hayat), daughter of Bichchhi Don (Ismail Tara) .The second half tells the story of Zoya (Sohai Ali Abro) who is the daughter of billionaire Mehboob Khan (Javed Sheikh) and is about to get married to Sherry. What happens next, well go see for yourself in cinemas.
Comedy is one of the hardest genres to perform as it requires a certain comic timing which is not an easy task. Moreover, when there is an ensemble cast, there is additional pressure as the comedy should not come across as forced and that there should be chemistry between the actors.
Jawani has a cast which includes some of the biggest names of the industry and they all make the material written by Vasay Chadhry crackle and make this comedy film a treat to watch. The four leading men are at ease and this reflects on the screen as the chemistry between them is effortless. The leading ladies may not have much to do but they are all great in their parts. All in all everyone put their best foot forward in this film.
Humayun Saaed as the main lead of the film looks super dapper and does justice to the role of the ‘hero’. All those people who wanted him to retire need to have a look at him doing his thing in this film before giving in their judgements. However, there is one thing Humayun absolutely cannot do, and that’s dancing. Sorry Humayun, but you can’t dance to save your life, but other than that we surely have a new hero in town.
The other men all do a great job in supporting roles. Vasay and Ahmed deserve a special mention as they perfect the comedic act and guarantee a dose of laughter whenever they make an appearance. Hamza Ali Abassi seems a bit uneasy and does strictly okay. He has nothing to add to the film except for his good looks and the ‘jawani’ part as sadly all the other men don’t exactly count as jawaans!
From the ladies, I would like to start by mentioning Sohai Ali Abro who has the meatiest role and she plays this with utmost conviction. Moreover, she surely has the ‘addayain’ of a heroine and add her dancing skills into the picture and you have the next big thing for cinema. The other ladies which are there as props do their roles well but Sarwat Gillani as the pathan wife surely stands out and deserves a special mention.
Javaid Sheikh and Ismail Tara have interesting roles and both these men showcase their comic timing which is perfection. Bushra Ansari may be doing the ‘Saima Chowdry’ act but is outright hilarious and it’s hugely because of her that the second half looked more appealing.
Nadeem Baig has arrived and this film will surely make all the industry insiders sit up and take notice. It won’t be wrong to say that ‘Jawani Phir Nahi Ani’ is one of the few films to have come out this year that actually looks like a film. The shots are all cinematic and you do not feel like you are watching a television show on the silver screen, so kudos Mr. Baig.
The story seems to be lifted from here there and everywhere and seems like an old vine in a new bottle. But Vasay Chaudhry makes sure that he puts a desi spin on the story by giving it dialogues which are all very relevant and relatable. There are several pop culture references which are very Pakistani and it’s these references that make the film all the more enjoyable. Moreover, the film has spoofs and what not that take it to the next level of comedy.
However, I do have some complains too. After having seen the film I understand what Hamza Ali Abbassi’s stand on the film was all about. The first half of the film has some unneeded scenes which steer the direction of the film towards adult zone. These scenes might elicit a few laughs from the youth but on the whole kind of put off the family audiences.
Also some of the backstories and logics used are outright hilarious and seem to be used just to wrap things up. There are some questions left unanswered specially regarding Humayun Saeed’s character. But these issues seem minor when you compare them to the ups of the film.
There may be some very blatant branding in the songs but that does not take away all the fun that the music of ‘Jawani Phir Nahi Ani’ has to offer. Furthermore, it’s the picturisation of the songs which make them even more exciting. The ‘Jalwa’ song may have four men who can’t move a leg, but the gorgeous Sohai Ali Abro in her picture perfect lehenga and dance moves more than makes up for it. The ‘Khul Jaye Botal’ and ‘Dance The Party’ songs might not be perfect party anthems but they are good additions to the album. Similarly, ‘Je Mundya’ and ‘Tarang’ with the elaborate sets and the chic costumes make for a visual treat.