It doesn’t require Athenian wisdom to assert that an artist’s work is a window to what he’s been through in his personal life. People, experiences, and events that an artist is exposed to, ultimately play a huge role in what he brings to his artistic canvas.
The trailer for Wrong Number 2, a sequel (or rather a namesake) to the 2015 hit, cements the above rhetoric when seen from a Yasir Nawaz’s vantage point.
An artist from Sindh who grew up in the metropolitan of Karachi with a potpourri of every culture, prevalent in Pakistan, where throwing racist slurs at each other is a norm, and who (like most Pakistanis) became a director watching Bollywood films – is all that’s evident from the trailer of WN2. While some factors seem to work for the trailer (and the film), others simply don’t. While it is not a bad trailer overall, it is not the best Pakistani cinema has produced either.
A glimpse into Wrong No. 2‘s trailer
From the story, it seems that Javed Sheikh is a politician who loathes the poor yet his daughter wishes to marry one. How the Pashtun patriarch (Javed Sheikh) schemes to stop her daughter’s wedding via his confidants such as Mehmood Aslam, Sana Fakhar, Shafqat Cheema, and Ahmad Hassan, with a possible twist, is what you’re going to witness on the big screen, this Eid Ul Fitr.
Moreover, with the way Yasir’s character is portrayed, you get a clear hint that there is more than what meets the eye, in this comedy of errors. The hide and seek amongst the characters furthers the confusions and culminates into a wedding finale (the favorite setting for any and every Subcontinent filmmaker).
Of characters, beautiful locations, and songs
As was stated in its teaser review, WN2 seems to have its supporting characters designed in eccentric and colorful ways. It’s not much about the lead pair alone, it’s about how a group of talented artists comes together to enact a rather twisted story which is where WN2 becomes interesting. While some characters seem fresh (Mehmood Aslam, Javed Sheikh, Sana Fakhar and Shafqat Cheema), others may seem an expansion of what you have already seen on TV or some Bollywood flick, for example, Ahmad Hassan has done an almost similar character with a similar elfin body language and dialogue delivery in a sitcom on TV. Even Javed Sheikh’s character seems similar to what we have seen earlier (a patriarch seduced by a sexy woman, for example, Mithun’s Jagga in the Houseful Series, which also reminds us that the opening music of the trailer is very similar to Papa Jaag Jayega from the same film).
However, moving on, some well-choreographed songs (especially a grand wedding song that will help market the film to the family audiences), and beautiful locations where the narrative travels from one eye-catching place to another, make up two important factors that make the film fresh, fun and energetic. Neelam Muneer’s character looks sexy as it looked in its teaser and if the film works, she will be one crowd puller artist for the industry. Sana Fakhar playing the sexy maid and Yasir Nawaz the mysterious man who’s always on the run, just add to the curiosity. Interestingly, it’s Sami Khan’s character that doesn’t seem to drive the narrative. He appears to be limited to your quintessential one-dimensional hero who’s there to get the girl. But we hope the artist will be utilized to his full potential when the film comes out.
A family entertainer but with racist and sex jokes
While the story does seem interesting and fresher than its competitor, this coming Eid, Chhalawa, what bothers us is Yasir’s fondness for racist jokes and tongue in cheek borderline vulgar dialogues or sequences with which the trailer is (unfortunately) steaming. He did the same in Mehrunia V Lub U which led to a lot of disdain from a larger chunk of the audience. As if tasteless sex jokes weren’t enough, the trailer is tarnished further by its unapologetic tendency to stereotype.
We have seen stereotyping and racism towards certain ethnicities quite often on our big screens, directors (from Shoaib Mansoor to Wajahat Rauf) have been cashing in on the masses’ knack to fall for stereotyping a certain group and making it the butt of the joke. There is a scene where a character says “Humne Sher Khan se pyar kia ha”. This along with some other dialogues/situations might not sit well with the family audiences. Yasir had earlier claimed WN2 to be a family-friendly entertainer, however, the abundance of such scenes only negates his claims.
All in all the rather fun-filled trailer hints at an interesting and an entertaining Eid watch. The film has all the elements to create a buzz and attract the audience this Eid ul Fitr.
We, however, do wish that the film doesn’t have more sex and racist jokes than whatever is shown in the trailer and hopefully, it doesn’t rely on them to be a fun watch.