Review by: Zia Shahid
In a market where only commercial or what you can call a “paisa vasool” cinema is appreciated, making a film like O21 is it self a massive risk but one should applaud Zeba bakhtiar, Azaan and Jami for having their faith in O21 in spite of the fact that it won’t appeal the masses, but yes it has definitely attracted the educated audience, people who love path breaking and different cinema, where they don’t need to drop their brains at home instead they have to concentrate on what is going on the screen.
Distinction marks for Jami, for handling a difficult subject with ease and creating a film which can easily be compared with any top notch Hollywood spy thriller. O21 is dark, intense and brutal, the story revolves around corporate warfare in Afghanistan involving CIA, afghan intelligence and an afghan local named Abdullah (Ayub Khoso) and how Abdullah manage to save his country from this corporate warfare with the help of Kashif Siddiqui (Shaan Shahid) a Spy who previously worked for CIA.
The film is brilliantly shot and beautifully written, cinematography can easily be compared with any Hollywood flick, same goes for the background score which compliments each and every scene in the film, although film’s editing could have been much tighter it looks a bit sloppy in some scene’s. Jami’s direction can be explained in just one word “Stunning”, people who knows Jami for his previous work and have seen his music video’s knew that O21 won’t be a straight forward film, Jami have certainly made the audience to put their thinking cap on while watching the movie or else they won’t understand the film. In terms of performance, O21 is blessed with the likes of Ayub Khoso, Hameed Sheikh and last but not the least Shaan Shahid and each one of them have done a splendid job. Joe Towne & James Hallett have also done their parts with ease, Amina Sheikh was good in a brief appearance so was Shamoon and other supporting cast.
On the whole O21 is dark and mysterious and it has taken the Pakistani cinema to the new level, thank you Jami for proving that Pakistani cinema is not just about item numbers and Bollywood stereo types.
SABZ IRTIQA Rating : 8/10