A review on Pakistani Comic Drama theatre play, Insanwaar aka Humanoid (2017). It was performed at NAPA’s International Theatre Festival 2017.
- Lighting & Directed by Arshad Malik
- Written by Jahangir Hussain
- Set Design by Javed Shb
- Costume Management by Pervaiz Iqbal
- Music by Manzoor Shb & Danish Manzoor
Insanwaar is about a faraway future, when humans have become extinct and apes rule the planet, we find a society where there is no religion but a code of conduct based on a system of rules for the betterment of the community. The theme is very similar to ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’ (2014).
These two races are compared by keeping the two stories side by side. Most of the stars played dual roles for the different timelines.
+ Full Cast
- Shahid Rana as Khamsa (Judge)
- Hammad Siddiq as Bakha / Munshi Ram
- Zaki Ullah Khan as Bahu / Ganesh
- Maria Baloch as Mahi / Mehro
- Syed Jameel as Zambi Jacob / Saith
- Mahjabeen Rehman as Zoya (Nun) / Rahiba
- Ahmer Hussain as Banray
- Adnan Anis as Chanray
- Kaneez Fatima as Titli / Tai Hajjan
- Asif Shehzad Malik as Nakora (Tattoo)
- Babar Ali as Albert
- Abdul Rehman as Hussain (Child)
- Ebad Khan as Hussain (Adult)
A young ape is in love with another and their marriage is opposed by some. While the community of elders debate the merits of the case, a scenario from the past is shown during the time of humans’ existence; the society of post partition Pakistan.
Here, a young man who is a Hindu and is in love with a Muslim girl but their marriage is opposed similarly as the two lovers of Apes species.
+ High Points
i – I liked the message of the play that perhaps the ‘next species’ would be better off than us as we have created so many differences among each other (in the name of religion, caste, race, etc) that in most cases each of us could live peacefully but do not because of man-made diversity. However, that scenario is also shown where the problems don’t change much.
ii – Adnan Anis plays the role of Chanray. Not only his character was an interesting one but he also performed amusingly on-stage. Good to see improvement in your performance. Other Honorable Mentions: Hammad Siddiq and Syed Jameel.
iii – The screenplay was very effectively written with provoking dialogues.
iv – The costumes were nicely designed and did a fair job in the appearance of the characters.
v – There were hilarious moments time to time, where in some cases it was very amusing to watch. Such as the tail of Saith is cut off while Khamsa’s tail is much, much longer than his height.
vi – I was not expecting to see this kind of ending but it was a good turn around.
+ Low Points
i – Generally, the performances by most of the actors were okay.
ii – Since there were many characters, only 2 – 3 of them had a proper character development.
iii – There were characters in the play where I wanted to feel their pain and suffering but could not due to director / writer’s lack of efforts in building up the ‘Emotional link’ with the audience first.
iv – After hearing that a play would be performed by the name ‘Insanwaar’, my expectations were a bit high. Such stars like Ahmer Hussain, Zakiullah, Syed Jamal are well known cast for any theater play. A talented theater artist, Arshad Malik is directing this play. I feel that my expectations were cut short.
Insanwaar works just as well as a popcorn enjoyment for warm fun. It does leaves you with thought provoking questions, into the nature of humanity darker side.
Rate: 3.25 out of 5 stars