Pakistani Independent Movie Aims to Break Stereotypes

via www.guardian.co.uk

Slackistan, a low-budget independent film from British-Pakistani director Hammad Khan is receiving some critical acclaim for portrayal of Islamabad’s elite youth and their lifestyles. The capital of Pakistan, population approximately 600,000, forms the backdrop. Pakistan’s second largest city, Lahore, also has a thriving underground rock scene (has recently seen the launch of its first guitar school) while Islamabad is about to gain a new outdoor auditorium and recording studio, the Rock Musicarium. As the first film of its kind, Khan is confident it won’t be the last. If you were in Islamabad and in your twenties, he explains, you’d probably be seen at places like The Hot Spot, an ice-cream parlour and B-movie shrine housed in a disused train, or Rendezvous, somewhere that offers outdoor sheesha and indoor dating. His friend and mentor Asif Kapadia, who won a Bafta for his film The Warrior, says the trailer surprised him. For Slackistan’s two leads, Shahbaz Shigri and Aisha Akhtar, the film is quite simply a reflection of their day-to-day realities. Shahbaz used his own car in the film, Aisha used her own room and they borrowed houses from friends to keep costs down. “It’s a countercultural film, one that rejects the stereotypical western view of Pakistan, as well as one that rejects the prevailing establishment of older cultures and traditions.”

Suggested by Ali Kazmi