We have all grown up watching Disney classics, Pixar’s amazing animated movies, Cartoon Network’s cartoons and not to forget the superhero movies by Marvel and DC. Undoubtedly, they have played a huge part in most of our growing up and surely some of our fondest memories are associated with them. However, these cartoons and movies are in English, and mostly have American and British locations. There aren’t many shows that would depict cultural diversity, which deprives children a learning experience of our culture and heritage.
While there were some puppet shows for kids like ‘Kaliyan’ on PTV, nothing seems to have progressed from there until now. With new movies coming out in Pakistan, it’s refreshing to see that work is being done for children as well. With the success of the animated series, ‘Burka Avenger’, we saw the first 3D animated movie in Pakistan titled ‘3 Bahadur’ in 2015; followed by the sequel of the movie in 2016 called, ‘3 Bahadur: The Revenge of Baba Balaam’.
Now, there is another addition in the list of animated movies titled, ‘Allahyaar and the Legend of Markhor’. The film is written and directed by Uzair Zaheer Khan and produced by 3rd World Studios. The voice over artists are some of the most recognisable names from the industry like Ali Noor, Ali Rehman Khan, Hareem Farooq, Arshad Mehmood, Nadia Jamil, Amjad Chaudhry, Ahmed Ali, Anum Zaidi, Arieb Azhar, Azfar Jafri and Natasha Humera Ejaz.
Recently, the movie was premiered in Karachi. It was a star-studded affair. One witnessed Aamina Sheikh, Zhalay Sarhadi, Zahid Ahmed, Junaid Khan, Aijaz Aslam, Faysal Qureshi, Sanam Saeed, Sarwat Gillani, Danish Nawaz in attendance with their families.
As far as the story is concerned, it revolves around a young boy named Allahyar who gets captured by a hunter along with a young markhor named Mehru. While trying to escape the hunters, he gathers the courage to save himself and Mehru, the young markhor and end up embarking on an adventure together while making new friends.
The movie was thoroughly entertaining and will have you laughing at Hero’s dialogues, a chukar bird, and get you emotional at some of the tender moments between the characters. The movie has a backdrop of northern Pakistan and the characters are some of the endangered species that are found in those areas.
While talking about the inspiration behind the movie at the premiere, the director said that CG artists can influence the young generation and bring about a positive change by incorporating our values in the movies; and hopefully a trend can start after this.
“It took us one and a half years to complete this while working tirelessly. It was a real honour to have all Pakistani artists. It’s a huge accomplishment and we intend to keep building on it,” he added.
The movie is a visual treat and is a welcoming change from the New York skyline that so often appears in international animated films. We hope that ‘Allahyar and the legend of Markhor’ does well at the box office. Good luck to the team!