The Pakistani short film “Noor,” which won an award at Cannes, was shown in Karachi.
The Pakistani movie Noor was shown for the first time this week at the Indus Valley School of Arts in Karachi. It won the best health picture award at Cannes in the online edition category.
Monday’s much-anticipated showing was packed with people, including actor and director Umar Adil.
Noor shows how people with vision problems are treated in society through the eyes of an eight-year-old girl who wears glasses.
Many people were touched by the movie, which was shown first. Then, during a question-and-answer session, the filmmakers talked more about the story.
It’s not a secret that people are quick to judge people who have any kind of condition or are physically challenged in any way.
Instead of helping or assisting those in this situation, people tend to make fun of, mock, and otherwise treat them badly, making up their minds on the spot that people who don’t fit the tight box of normalcy are somehow less.
This movie does a beautiful job of showing just such a setting. The short film, which was made by See-Prime, doesn’t have any music, comedy, or action scenes, but the interesting topic will keep the audience interested.
Farah Usman wrote the story, and there isn’t a single part that we thought was unnecessary.
A break with the past
In a chat with Geo Digital, Usman talked about the script and gave details.
“I had written a story before this one with an eight-year-old girl as the main character, but it didn’t show the ups and downs of a bond between a father and daughter. The second time I wrote the story, it seemed more powerful, put together, and better.
“We had no idea that a simple story would get to Cannes and that Noor would win the Best Health Film of 2023 award.”
Usman said this about her future plans: “I wanted to do something different from saas-bahu stories for a long time, but if someone still wants me to try something new, I will.”
From failing to winning at Cannes!
Umar Adil’s movie Noor took him two to three months to finish, but getting there wasn’t easy.
During the ceremony for showing the film, the director said, “We had been working in the health and development fields for 10 years when Sight Savers and White Rice reached out to us for the cause.” They only talked briefly about the idea, but Farah and I both agreed that a short picture would be better because viewers in this area are different and will understand the message better.
Adil told Geo Digital that he hadn’t thought the movie would go to Cannes.
But luck was on their side, and for the first time, the Cannes World Film Festival had a category for online editions. “That’s how we were able to win this category’s award.”
“Working with child stars was hard, but it turned out to be a good experience,” he said when talking about the problems.
Chale Thaye Saath, which came out in 2017, was Adil’s first movie as a director. Even though the movie didn’t do well, the 17-minute Noor has given him many chances to do well.
Parent and playwright
Sarwat Gilani said at the event, “People say I do something different on screen, but it took me 20 years to get here.” I also took part in plays like “The Girl Next Door” or “Saas-Bahu.” I’m thankful to Allah to see that Pakistani indie film is making a name for itself around the world. The short stories we’ve made here have at least been made with a cause in mind.
She said that being a parent made her do a better job in the role.
“I know that a lot of kids have this problem and are called names like ‘Chashmatu Agaya’ and ‘Chashmish Hai’ because of it. We laugh at or make fun of things like this all the time. We don’t know how this will make the child feel.”
“Noor’s message is clear and simple, and as a parent and an artist, I was drawn to this short film,” the Joyland star said. I have no regrets”.
When asked when she would be back in dramas, the A-lister answered sarcastically, “I will be in several commercials.” Don’t forget about me, I’ll be back soon.”