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Go with the glow
Rafina (Amna Ilyas) is a headstrong young woman who wants to do something with her life. She has a playful relationship with her fiance, Akram. Rafina's mother in law to be Rosie Khala, a beautician understands Rafina's frustrations and agrees to take her on as an assistant.
Rafina may be a simple girl from the ghetto but she is tall and thin, she attracts the eye of some marketing industry experts who want a girl with wholesome looks.
Good Morning Karachi is a radio station which gives ongoing news as the the film is set at the time of the elections in 2007 where Benazir Bhutto made her return to politics and was subsequently assassinated.
The film is more than just Rafina wanting to make it big as a model although she soon realises that she will enter a world of vain, shallow rich people.
The film is an unusual exploration of the role of young women in Pakistani society and also the frustrations that young men feel. Akram is happy with Rafina but then does not want her to work when they get married even though his mum has toiled for years working as a local beautician.
In fact we are not really sure what Akram does but he turn out to be a political agitator who feels that the young have been betrayed with economic hopelessness. The irony is Akram is a Bhutto supporter, happy to help a woman to come into power but not happy for his wife to be have a career.
The film is a study of ambition in a society where women are expected to know their limits whether it is because of conservative traditions or religion. It is a conflict Rafina faces but she also has an opportunity to make a better life for herself and her fatherless family.
The script is not perfect, a lot of characters are not fully developed, the nuances of a lot of the arguments are not even explored, it is even clumsy at times. The film might even needed to discuss if the election of Bhutto would had many a difference
Pakistan has been let down by its political elites who have been too busy lining their own pockets. Bhutto's own husband was widely mocked as Mr 10% when she was first in power.
Still this is an interesting exploration of life in modern Pakistan.
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