With great power comes great responsibility and that’s the reason the person who uses the power well, succeeds. Be it Spiderman or Pakistani film producers, if you try to be responsible, be with it power or money (or both), things will end up in your favour. If not, then the result would be an Eid disaster named Na Band Na Baraati that will drain all your mental energy and make you numb by the time The End breaks the spell!
Zahid (Shayan Khan) and Shahid (Mikaal Zulfiqar) are two eligible bachelors who happen to be brothers; after Zahid threatens to elope with his girlfriend, Shahid agrees to help him, ending up signing as the groom on the Canadian Nikaah Nama. From there begins their comedy of errors where Shahid has to pose as the husband of Ayesha (Anzhelika Tahir) while Zahid has to find out ways to change things back to the way they were. Add Shahid’s girlfriend Zoya (Nayab Khan), Ayesha’s one-sided lover (Ali Kazmi), her always angry father (Mahmood Akhtar), the beautiful mother of Zoya (Atiqa Odho) and the non-serious parents of the guys (Qavi Khan and Azra Mohyeddin) to the equation and you get a roller coaster ride that keeps you confused till the end.
The film is officially Mikaal Zulfiqar’s first Pakistani film and his fans thronged the cinema to get a glimpse of their favourite actor; instead, they got to see the actor relegated to the second lead and as the elder brother in the plot. Despite all these shortcomings, Mikaal seemed like an actor from another planet as his expressions, mannerisms and even dialogue delivery outshone others. Ali Kazmi was wasted in a comedy role because he is capable of doing much more than that. In fact, despite not getting the screen time an actor of his stature commands, he did well enough to make the audience laugh through his dialogues and antics. The locations used in the film are heavenly and come out as one of the main reasons to watch the film and same can be said of the couple of songs that were filmed at picturesque locations including the Niagra Falls.
The film failed mainly because the producers decided to launch one of their own – Shayan Khan – as the lead hero instead of banking on more dependable actors, especially Mikaal Zulfiqar. The result was that every time the ‘Man-Child’ opened his mouth, the crowd erupted in a laughter as he neither had the voice of a hero nor the intellect to deliver dialogues with expressions. It was like Rajpal Yadav was playing Shahenshah in the iconic film and delivering the Rishte Main To Hum dialogue with all sincerity. The girls were a disappointment as well and it fell on the shoulders of Mikaal Zulfiqar and Ali Kazmi to carry the film forward. Veteran actor Qavi Khan’s second innings in films have yielded one bad character after another and although he tries to repeat his iconic Business is Business dialogue as Cheeni Khao Jaan Banao, it doesn’t gel with the audience at all. The worst part of the film is the direction because there is no continuity in scenes, no camera movement and songs like Wiki Leak that literally made families exit the cinema cursing the usher as if it was his fault.
The Verdict 1.5/5
It would have been better had NBNB been an English film because there was hardly any proper Urdu dialogue for the heroines. The locations used were English as were the clothes; so why take the audience in Pakistan for a ride especially the ones who couldn’t digest the Wiki Leak song after paying Rs.700! It is films like these that damage the developing film industry and instead of being shown to the Censor people, there should be a Quality Control team that should accept or reject such projects where the leading man shouldn’t be leading, where the supporting cast is a Star and where people are cast on the basis of their availability instead of talent. Had the film been released on another date and had Harish Kumar Patel’s script been treated in a better manner – read professional manner – Na Band Na Baraati would have done well but sadly, it failed to live up to the expectations, if there were any.