Lollywood – The Period of Great Change (1967 – 1978)

Posted April 24, 2010 11:11 am by History

Love across the frontiers of state and religion can only end in tragedy in a Pakistani movie. The last scene from Lakhoun Mein Aik  (1967 - Shamim Ara, Ejaz) directed by Raza Mir.

During this period, Pakistan witnessed great political and social upheaval. The country lost its other half. Nurul Haq’s Jalte Suraj Ke Neeche was the last Urdu film from the golden land of what was known as East Pakistan. The former eastern wing (now Bangladesh) was an important film market for the Urdu films of Lahore and Karachi and contributed around thirty-three per cent of the total investment in a production. The drying up of this source of revenue was a major blow to the national film industry. On the other hand, it became a turning point for the development of regional cinema as the producers looked into the financial viability of making more films in the provincial languages – Punjabi, Pashto and Sindhi. The seventies also brought the husband-wife-cum-director-star team of Hasan Tariq and Rani to the forefront of Urdu cinema. The Rani-Tariq team’s filmography consists of almost two dozen ventures including such classics as Mera Ghar Meri Jannat (1968), Anjuman (1970), Umrao Jan Ada (1972) and Ek Gunah aur Sahi (1975). Aina (1977), a musical love story with a tinge of social comment established Calcutta – born Nazrul Islam as one of the topmost directors of Pakistani Cinema. The film created history for having the longest combined run in Karachi – almost 250 weeks.

Also during this period, a small group of influential film makers managed to get away with some explicit scenes, which normally would not have been allowed by the Censor Board. Eager male audiences thronged the theatres to watch a series of yellow movies like Khatarnak, Khaufnak, Khanzada, Nawabzada, and Malikzada. Lewd dances and songs, rape scenes, and semi nude actresses dancing in the rain were common ingredients of such blockbusters – Mushtaq Gazdar

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