TV series

Mr. Khan’s Review on Ishq Hai – Episode XI & XII (2021)

A review on Pakistani drama TV series, Ishq Hai – Episode 11 & 12 (2021). The new TV series is directed by Aabis Raza and written by Rehana Aftab. Ishq Hai is an ARY Digital Production.

(Note: If you’ve already read the review of the previous episode, you can skip directly ahead to the High points section).

+ Crew

  • Directed by Aabis Raza
  • Written by Rehana Aftab
  • DOP by Waqas Ali
  • OST composed by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan
  • Editing by Zeeshan Ali Jokhio
  • Produced by Fahad Mustafa & Dr. Ali Kazmi

+ Note

Ishq Hai is a tale of two lovers, a Shakespearean tragedy set in South Asia where the conflict between tradition and individual freedom comes into play. An age long question within our Pakistani culture; should the tradition of arranged marriage be questioned? How important is the right to choose your own life partner? The drama has a star studded cast of young and veteran actors and is an exclusive ARY Digital Production.

 + Main Cast

  1. Minal Khan as Isra
  2. Danish Taimoor as Shahzaib
  3. Hammad Farooqi as Hammad
  4. Babar Ali as Isra’s father
  5. Hammad Shoaib as Haris
  6. Saba Faisal as Nafisa
  7. Mahi Baloch as Sameera
  8. Sajjad Paul as Raza
  9. Mahenur Haider as Nimra

+ Plot

Isra and Shahzaib are the young lovers in conflict with their respective families. Their parents have already found a spouse for them. Arranged marriage has been a family tradition but against all odds, Isra and Shahzaib want to fight for their love. Will their pure love be able to conquer all?   

+ High Points

i – In Episode 12, Shahzaib has a slight bit of character development where he talks about his late father and how lenient he was towards him. Such upbringing perhaps made him feel over the years that whatever Shahzaib wants, he gets. This perhaps explains a lot about his actions but in no way, should this ever justify how a sympathetic protagonist should act (but I’ll get to that soon enough later in the review)!

ii – There are some scenes which use light to great effect to visually produce melancholia and despair on screen . The subtleties in this show are far and between but the production team should be commended for their efforts.

+ Low Points

i – Episode 11 and 12 were pretty much a dud. Nothing of significance happened during this 1 hour plus episodes. They were not even really utilized for vital character development, just repetitive melodrama between the main cast and gratuitous slow motion to prolong each episode to its television length runtime.

ii – The acting in these two episodes were mediocre at best. The veteran cast still can get away with cringe worthy dialogue but the young cast (unfortunately) cannot. And Mahenur Haider as Nimra is by far the weakest in her performance. But the fault does not solely lie on the actors as the director should find ways to hide or compensate for his actor’s shortcomings. Editing can be a perfect tool to hide weak perfromances but is sparingly used to its full effect of making the product a bit tighter. 

iii – Twelve episodes in and the Original Soundtrack by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan has already run its course. It’s nonsensical that after every single dramatic dialogue, the OST starts blaring into our ears! Ishq Hai is desperate to make the audience feel emotional for its characters and overbearing music is definitely not the right approach to do so.

iv – So once again, Isra called her mother later in Episode 12 to explain the situation but instead of just saying “It’s not my fault cause I was drugged and forcefully married by a psychopath!”, she just blurts out if her mother could imagine her child committing such a heinous act. Yet again prolonging a situation which could be solved by a single line of dialogue. Utter nonsense this show is. 

v – Speaking of psychopaths, now the show is desperate to make “psycho” Shahzaib a lovable guy who only kidnapped Isra out of true love. I’m pretty sure this character is past the stage of garning any sympathy from the viewers now. 

vi – Ishq Hai has some of the worst Sound Effects I’ve ever heard. The fight scene in the show had some of the phony punch/ blow to the body sounds ever used in a TV show. Awful!

+ Overall

Bad writing, minimal character development, awful performances, Ishq Hai has nothing substantial to offer. 

 Rate: 1.0 out of 5 stars

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