Umera Ahmed is probably one of the only female writers who has dared to bring the most debatable subjects up front in the form of traditional set ups whether it Shehr-e-Zaat or Zindagi Gulzar Hai with strong woman who go through self-discovery and conversations with Allah. ALIF is not your run-of-the-mill type show that caters to social or typical issues, it’s beautiful, sensitive and wise with all the characters that are poetically written and placed. Whether it’s Momina’s struggle in life, Abdul Alla’s desperation to want the best for his grandson and Momin’s arrogance and faltered faith, ALIF is Umera Ahmed’s finest work to date.
MOMIN’S PAST MAKES HIM WHO HE IS
Behind the self-centered attitude and high handedness, Momin is jaded, and therefore he uses his hard exterior as an excuse to hide his emotions. So the flash backs of young Momin and everything he had to endure whilst watching his mother go through trying times as a dancer in a sloppy family was quiet painful. In spite of everything you feel helpless as the audience because the circumstances are nothing but cruel for a young boy who is so overtly attached to his mother and he is unable to make sense out of it. While watching young Momin battle the confusion surrounding his tender years, his innocent conversation with his friends, I felt terrible. Also Husn-e-Jahan had let her misery completely take over her mind and given up on life, it was hard to watch her connect with her son.
“dada ap mujay bohat pareshan kartay hain” – when Momin uttered those words to his grandfather, I had tears streaming down my cheek. The confrontational scene between Momin and Abdul Alla was one of the highlight scenes because his grandfather reminds Momin of everything else that he has forced to forget in his life. The argument, the tears, the hopelessness, and everything else that’s been in lost between was very heart wrenching. Abdul Alla shows Momin the real truth which he refuses to see and it scares him. How is that going to change Momin once he finds out that Abdul Alla has returned to Turkey? We’ll find out soon.
Between Momin and Neha, we know the truth, however we do realise that Momin is going to feel terrible once he finds out that Neha is betraying him. For now, he’s hurt and wants to mend his relationship. And this depicts Momin’s softer side, that the relationship means something to him. But loss can change a man and we’re going to find that sooner or later.
Manzar Sehbai makes you teary eyed with him and the way he broke down with Master Ibrahim, was sad to watch. He has no hope for Momin and it breaks his heart, so when he met with a long lost friend, he let his emotions free. To learn about Master Ibrahim’s story was also a beautiful element, I had been wondering how his story would pan out and to learn that he moved on from being a fashionable shoe designer and altered to a more spiritual journey after meeting Abdul Alla was a nice shift. Between the glamour and pomp and show, you find your true self and that’s what Master Ibrahim’s story is and these two old friends share as a bond.
It was a nice effect to have Momina break the silence for a minute with her presence and I kept thinking how all the characters are intertwined if you think about it and I am looking forward to their story.
MOMINA FEELS HOPEFUL
Sajal Aly stuns me with her responsiveness and it was nice to watch her have hope for a change. Her entire life’s focus is to help her ailing brother and fulfill their dreams of becoming an actor, therefore she lives in worry, and even though she is struggling actress but she has tremendous potential which works out for when her friend Neha sends away to Lahore for an audition in a Hollywood film. Luckily Momina is selected after giving a breakthrough audition and you realise how mind blowing Sajal is. However back home her brother is in the hospital and we’re afraid tragedy is going to strike. How is this going to change Momina?
The episode was melancholic but insightful. The scope with which each actor plays his/her character is very interesting to watch. Pehlaaj is the cutest with his letters conversing with Allah, Kubra has shown she’s a fine actor, Hamza shows why he fits Qalb-e-Momin’s character, Sajal is always perfect, with Manzar Sehbai is stark reminder of life and why we need to have faith in Allah. And all the supporting actors are wonderful too. So if you haven’t seen the episode or ALIF yet, we’re down to 4 episodes so you can quickly catch up and see why it’s a success.
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