One episode is too little to form an opinion about a drama serial but there are some first impressions that I’d like to share.
Noor ul Ain has been written by Edison Idrees Masih but it’s Sarmad Khoosat’s direction that compelled me to watch it last night. I have deep respect for Sarmad’s work; when you talk to him he has sincerity and love for his profession and the best thing is, he has a sense of honesty and realism. He’s the first to admit when something is sub-par or wrong. Sarmad’s direction is always brilliant, whether it’s in the super hit Humsafar or the not so successful Mor Mahal. Manto will go down in history as his ultimate best and of course, I watched Teri Raza mostly for his character. As an actor and director, Sarmad is a name that demands and has earned respect.
Unfortunately, Sarmad doesn’t write all the serials that he directs. Noor ul Ain, for now, appears to offer nothing original in terms of storyline. It’s a story that we’ve seen and enjoyed in a film like Saathiya (Rani Mukherji and Vivek Oberoi) for example, which appears to have inspired it. A girl and boy from two different social classes fall in love and marry against their parents’ wishes. They believe love can conquer all but life happens and they realize that their marriage is not as idyllic as they had envisioned it to be. This is Noor ul Ain’s storyline (as projected in the official synopsis) and it is very inspired by Saathiya.
The story may not offer anything new (or so it seems right now) but the direction and characters may be able to carry it through. I’ve never been a fan of Imran Abbas (especially after his Bollywood foray with Bipasha Basu in Creature followed by Jaanisar) but somehow his character in Noor ul Ain has appealed to me. Sajal Aly, of course, has proven her prowess as an actor and does justice to her character one hundred percent. But will the defiant Noor ul Ain manage to overshadow the defiant Sassi (in O Rangreza) is my question? I’m intrigued by the character of Ghazala, played brilliantly by Iffat Rahim, as well as the matriarchal role played by Marina Khan, who’s cast as Imran Abbas’ iron-willed mother.
As I said, one episode is too short to form an opinion about the play. We’ll have to watch at least three episodes before we draw a fair conclusion on its merits.