I had actually written a good review for Dillagi the day it was released but since certain people are taking their sweet time publishing it , and people keep asking for something on it I decided to do a little mini review to keep the momentum going for those interested . So be warned , there are only so many words in the English language if the the main review looks similar blame it on a glitch in the space -time continuum.
Dillagi begins with two sisters walking down the bustling streets of some run down area of Sukkar, which seems to be the flavour of the month with producers at the moment . No complaints there ,Pakistan is much more than Lahore and Karachi and its good to see other cities . The heroine Anmol ( Mehwish Hayat ) gets her purse stolen but unlike most heroines she gives full chase to the the thief , throwing her chadder to one side and doesnt give up till she finds him,and beats the life out of him . It’s is all very filmi and the kind of action sequence usually reserved for heroes not heroines . Through out the chase I was waiting for the hero to step in and save the day but this is a Faiza Iftikhar drama so no , the hero is watching from a distance, stuck in traffic . In her interview with me the writer said that people may not like Anmol , that she may well irritate and annoy people and now I can understand why .
Anmol isnt the typical drama heroine .She is used to doing things for herself because she has no brother or cousin to take her shopping, pay their household bills or take her to university. So she doesn’t have the luxury of all the usual little feminine airs and nazakatey that we are told consititute a woman’s life .As a result she is incredibly practical and very self reliant . When her family is threatened with by Kifayat Ali , she wants to file a police report and searches for a lawyer to file a stay order . Mehwish Hayat has done an excellent job of portraying Anmol . her dialogue delivery , expressions and complete lack of self consciousness are all perfect and in a subtle way disarming . However out of the box or over the top Anmol seems , you can’t help but admire her bravery and determination . TThat is perhaps the most attractive thing about Anmol , she isn’t asking to be liked , admired or romanced she is just struggling through whatever hand kismet has dealt her and getting on with life the best she can.
The first episode of Dillagi is fast paced and well edited , every step is logical and justified . The writer , director and actors are very much on the same page so far . Like any woman I reserve the right to change my mind , but so far this looks like one of those rare serials that might actually allow me to just sit back and relax . I love the atmosphere director Nadeem Baig has created , there is none of the usual glamour or lighting I have begone to associate with so called “mega serials ‘. By the end of the episode I could see why Mohid likes Anmol , even though he hardly knows her .
Mohid ( Humayoon Saeed) is a Business man which means he does a little strong-arming on the side . However he seems to pride himself on being honest and treating the weak with respect , a strange thing for a tough guy . Humayoon Saeed is great match for this role and so far he has done a fabulous job . Takes a deep breath and says ….I…I .. I forgive him for being Irtiza instead of Fawad … That secret vendetta is now over , especially as he let me take a picture with him at the Dallas premiere of Bin Roye .. ( that always helps :p) . Humayoon looks great as Mohid and the chemistry between Him and Mehwish Hayat is amazing . The reason Mohid is tough but principled is his mother played by Saba Hamid ,who has brought him with the right values . Saba Hamid plays a take no prisoners kind of mother who is generally unimpressed with ‘husbands” but not Men in general . She adores her son and gets him to do a bit of social work on the side .This looks like another interesting character and I cannot wait to see her interaction with Anmol .
The rest of the cast is rounded out by Uzma Hassan who plays Mohid’s sister. I really , really loved Ms Hassan in UBFN as the nokarani with benefits and the bhabie with red lipstick in Ghundi . Imran Ashraf plays Dastagir Mohid’s henchman , whom I normally hate on sight as a rule but here he looks kind of cute . I was a huge fan of Aunn Zara and maybe we can get some of that Aunn -Manzar magic in this serial too ? From one of the promos he seems to have a thing for Anmol’s sister so they may provide a few lighter moments . Asma Abbasi plays Anmol’s mother , and heartiest congratulations to Nadeem Baig for some how stopping her from rolling her eyes in that starnge way she does in everyother serial . Nadeem Baig maybe the second person after Haissem Hussain to do this so it is indeed an exclusive club .
All in All this looks like a great serial to watch . Strong script , great direction and it looks like all the actors understand their characters so I am really excited for this one . Having said that I am not sure if I like all the slapping going on . I think one slap per serial should be enough( or better still NONE at all ) otherwise it all looks silly and gratuitous . I am just grateful there is one serial on air which doesn’t involve some brainless bholi larki .
Since it is International Woman’s day this week and the media is full of images of successful women I want to say something about the women we see on our screens . It is an undeniable fact that the images we see on our screens influence us . I am sure many women are inspired by the fabulous Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy for winning two consecutive Oscars . I am sure women are inspired by women politicians , authors ,scientists , lawyers , Doctors and teachers and all kinds of women who raise the banner of excellence in every field . However our aspirations are also shaped by the women we see on our screens. What effect do the weeping , wailing Mazloom aurtein that fill our TV screens , the perpetual victims who suffer till they are rescued , who put up with any kind of abuse because their name has been written on a piece of paper next to their abuser have on our psyche ?. Its time Pakistani Dramas got back to their roots , and brought back the thinking , strong women that this country actually produces back to our screens . It’s not just the women that need a come back , its the men of principle too . Its time to stop romanticizing abusers , rapists and villains . Call a spade a spade , stop blurring the lines to make money . .Who knows what damage you are causing .