Couples Only

‘!!’: A new movie by a trio of local talents. The trailer is brilliant – it’s on the movies website: “Couples Only: The Story of Youth”:

It’s the only local movie I’ve ever looked forward to watching… should be out by the summer.

bq. Title: Couples Only!

Tagline: The Story of Youth, in their own language

Synopsis: Couples Only! is a larger than life portrayal of an everyday

story of the youth. Its a tale of three ordinary guys with an

extra-ordinary problem, soon to become bigger when their friendship

comes on line.

Written, Directed & Produced by: Adeel & Khurram Suhrwardy

A review of the trailer from across the border:

bq. …there is one Pakistani film that seems to break the mold� Couples Only: The Story of Youth� a film about being single and young in Karachi. It�s daring without being offensive. It�s bold without being shocking. It�s independent filmmaking at its finest. And I�ve only watched the trailer! :-0

>> ‘Niraj: Pakistan Cinema’:

32 thoughts on “Couples Only”

  1. I am in the process of downloading the Large trailer – to view it better – it is no doubt some good work and I too look forward to watching this movie.

    On a side note I would strongly recommned everyone to BUY the original version so that we together can support their efforts – Its no secret that we all buy the pirated DVD’s from our local stores but please refrain and buy the original when it comes out

  2. pretentious movie!!!!

    the actors cant act. it seems more like a direct lift off from several cult classics and some commercial duds. (however my poor brain can’t recall which ones). i bet they came up with their concept while they were tripping and playing need for speed underground. who are they kidding? i wouldnt watch this move even if it was the last movie on earth. not even if you would force me to watch it at gunpoint. id rather barf my guts out then watch this piece of trash. i cant believe that you actually like this movie KO. it would be fun to watch a movie which is original.

  3. shobz, you’re way too harsh on the movie, or it’s just a mindless knee-jerk reaction against anything local _(the general theory amongst many being that if it’s paki it’s gotta suck)_. The actors aren’t Tom Cruise or Shan, but they’re doing a decent job, all things considered. The movie is more orignal than most hollywood or indian movies ever made, and if you are only going to watch original movies, have fun with the good old soundless movies of Charlie Chaplin – and make sure you don’t catch any hollywood flicks made after the 60’s…

  4. been there done that. its not so hard to steal scenes from Mollywood and Hollywood movies. everyone claims that their movie is original. however i feel that this movie sucks. i dont have anything against Pakistani movies or dramas. i just think that they suck coz they arent original. i cant believe someone had the balls to make a stupid movie with a stupid title. “couples only” has to be the dumbest title i have ever heard. i’d rather pull my teeth out (no dentist required here) than watch it. i also dont go for stupid hollywood flicks of this generation. now if they had made a masterpiece like “eternal sunshine of the spotless mind” i would have been impressed.

  5. I think it is indeed commendable that these young people had the passion and guts to actually make a movie instead of sitting around complaining and stereotyping Pakistani movies and dramas.

    I’m pretty impressed with the trailer and can’t wait to watch the movie. It seems like a light-hearted entertaining movie that’s well shot and directed. These people deserve a pat on their back for trying to make a difference. Keep making movies, guys.

  6. gag me with a crowbar. this logic doesnt make any sense. trailers can’t predict the outcome of a movie. there have been loads of movie with great trailers. most of them bombed at the box office. i can bet that this movie stinks. we dont have to love everything we see. i know we should encourage local talent. what is the use of encouraging local talent if they rip off stuf from half a dozen places. this does not mean i am a Paki Basher. it sickens me that we have to ape everyone and try to carve our own niche by trying to appeal to the young generation by making a movie which would suit their mentality. i wouldnt watch this movie period. how about an original storyline with some fun elements? the part where the guy is running along the shoreline is so cliched. agh. it makes me want to gag myself over and over again. the drag race sequence is another clicehd example. the part where the car goes into nitro mode. puhleeze. i thought this was supposed to be a movie for the youth. this is not some movie which rips off the fast and the furious (then ripped off by the makers of need for speed underground 1 and 2).

  7. There is this ancient chinese proverb which goes like this:

    “The old man points towards the beautiful woman. The fool looks at the finger”

    Shobz, you are by far one of the most ignorant people i have come across in a very very long time. What is the point of re-inventing the wheel. You are suggesting that these kids should:

    a) Come up with an “original” story. Point me towards an “original” story in the history of time. Everything is derived. Go check your literature and psychology books, and come back and tell me what you think about “originality”.

    b) Come up with a new approach towards “filming” stuff. My are so full of yourself arent you? Umm listen even Steven Spieldberg uses standard camera shots.

    c) So they are impressed by a couple of foriegn movies. Explain to me this:

    1) Why do we read the books written by foriegners for our education? Why dont we write our own books on medicine, business studies, architecture in order to mantain our “culture” and “supreme orginality”.

    2) Havent you heard of best practices?

    You see, it is people like you who dont know a flying two pieces of crap about filming and sit down and comment about people who are willing to put their balls out in order to make a difference. Shame upon you.

  8. yeah i am so full of myself. when these camera shots have been done to death there is nothing to look forward to. i guess you have forgotten how a lot of movies started aping those stunning sequences from the matrix. it was fun when we got to see something new on the matrix. its not fun when you see a ton of movies using the same format. on the contrary i do know something about movies. i am not one of those mindless people who loves to watch crap. i guess you havent heard about meaningful movies which do have an original plot. let them put their balls out for all i care. i have a right to my opinion. i am not stopping you all from watching the movie. do you hear me pleading with you all to not watch this movie? i think you dont understand the concept of an original screenplay or story. please try to think out of the box instead of thinking in the box. jee i wonder why they hand out oscars for best original screenplay and adapated screenplay. there is a difference between those two. now please dont tell me that the matrix was not original. you are bringing western ideas into this for nothing. why cant we do something different to showcase our talent? we dont have to borrow from western concepts to make a movie. there have been film makers who have made intellegent movies without aping the west. ps. start reading. there may be movies which are symbolic in nature. you cant say that they arent original. movie makers may adapt certain novels to make books but then they are different. the concept is original. i dont care if you wanna label me a fool or whatever. i would criticise my best friend and brother if they were to make a crappy movie. is there a shortage of ideas in the country? i dont think so. a movie can be commerical without looking shitty. i am so sorry if you all get so pissed off cause someone criticised a silly movie trailer. i cant wait for the movie to come out so i can poke fun at it. i would never make such crap. never ever.

  9. Shobby,

    How can you say the movie is crappy if you haven’t even seen it? First you say you can’t judge a movie by its trailer, then you go ahead and judge the movie anyways and call it crap. And if you are not one of those “mindless people who loves to watch crap” then why are you waiting so eagerly for the movie you’ve labelled crap to come out anyways? So you can poke fun at it, right? It just goes to prove that you seem to really enjoy mindlessly critisizing the efforts of others.

    Let’s see you come up with an “original screenplay” for a 5 min short film. I’ll make you an offer you can refuse. Help nurture the Pakistani film scene. Come up with something good for a short film. If I think it’s the absolute best thing since toasted sliced bread with butter and marmite on it, I’ll make the movie. It might not win awards at the next Gulshan-e Iqbal film festival … but then again it just might.

    At least I am optimistic about even folks like you. Who knows … there might even be some talent lurking under all of your rantings and ravings.

  10. i dont like to go and mindlessly criticize things I hate. If they had come up with something good i wouldnt have critisized it. sometimes a trailer can let you know what the movie is all about. its so apparent that the movie is lousy. they havent made an effort. what a ripoff! it wouldnt be hard to come up with an original screenplay. there are loads of interesting topics out there. i look the way you place me in the “folks like you” category. it saddens me that our people waste their talent making movies which have already been done to death.

  11. shobz there is a thing called commercial cinema and more than 90% of the box office successes are associated with commercial cinema. Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind was a modern classic but it made $34 million at the us box office. Even though it starred A-List stars as Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet, it sunk at the box office. Spiderman 2 made $373 million. It was a ‘done to death’ comic book movie. There was nothing new in the subject or execution. Yet it got rave reviews and box office success.

    The audience needs to take one step at a time. US audience is mature when it comes to film subjects and technique. It will take sometime for our country’s audience to gulp these subjects down. How many people in Pakistan have watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless mind, let alone how many people understood it. There are many factors one has to consider when making a movie.

    P.S. As far as ‘Matrix’ goes. It was anything but original. It was ripped off many Honk Kong Animes. Its just that not many people watch Anime, so they think Matrix is original. It might be original for Hollywood. And as it goes maybe this movie will be original for Lollywood…. think about it…

  12. please get your facts straightened before you make your argument 3b. eternal sunshine of the spotless mind was a low budget movie for starters. it was never intended to break box office records. it was made for around 20 million. it is a well known fact that jim carrey took a huge paycut for this movie. it was released by focus features which makes meaningful movies. it was also a limited release and it’s box office average per screen was higher than movies released that weekend. it also did well internationally. so you cant call that movie a dud or turkey or bomb or something that sank at the box office. spider man 2 is based on the spiderman comic series. spider man comics have been around for a very long time. the concept was very new when the comics started getting published. so you cant say that the spiderman movies have been done to death as they are based on something original (ie. the spiderman comics). it got good reviews and not rave reviews. the director did a good job as he did not make some trashy movie like “batman and robin” which was very campy and too loud. i agree that the spiderman movies were really good as they were made with commercial aspirations. however you should remember that even commercial movies should have a good plot. its just marketing power which hypes up these movies which makes you want to see them. that is one reason why they loose their box office power in the following weekends. the only exceptions are good movies.

    the audience does need to take it one step at a time. however the film makers in our country are making movies which isnt even worth a look. then we have some hyped movie coming up which is supposed to be good. if i had a nickel for every time i heard that i would be a millionare by now.

    ps. i also know about animes. animes are basically animated stuff. furthermore i never said anything about the fight scenes. it was a first on the silver screen. people can do anything in animes. that is cause they are ANIMATED. there are no restrictions. it would be impossible to do that in a movie. i mean anyone can have some great special effects in an animated movie or soing something out of this world. doing this in a movie is not so easy.the story behind the matrix wasnt copied from some other place. i loved the first part but hated the sequels coz keanu kept babbling.

  13. _the story behind the matrix wasnt copied from some other place._

    It was copied from a large number of places, which the Wachowski brothers freely admit to. Hell, there are whole books about the cultural, philisophical and religious material the movies draw upon.

    There is nothing orignal about the Spiderman movies. Neither was there anything new or orignal about it when Amazing Spiderman #1 came out in 1963 – it was yet another overly campy teenage superhero.

    Shobz, while I don’t understand why you’re talking about hollywood in a discussion about an upcoming local movie, all your points are dead wrong. And as for Couples only being a overly ‘hyped movie’, how exactly does a blog post make it hyped? Your math is also all wrong – how gullible are you that you’ve heard of a million hyped movies in Pakistan? There are hardly any.

    Pakistani cinema has no relation to hollywood. In Hollywood, a 20 million dollar movies is considered ‘shoe string’, where the director and actors practically have to live on bread and water alone – here 20 million is more than our entire industry is worth. Many cinema houses in Europe and America take in more than 20 million dollars in a *single day*.

  14. i stick by my words when i say that the whatchamacalit brothers made a different movie. i think it is pretty obvious that the movie draws something from somewhere. its not as if they started implementing their own philosophy or something. i was just talking about the screenplay. ripping of a screenplay and being inspired by some thought or theme and writing something original does not mean that the movie is a total ripoff. if its a remake then there’s nothing new. i remember when the japanese version of the ring came out, it was something new though it was based on something. this does not make the ring a ripoff. this does not give film makers the rights to rip everyone off. what i mean about the spiderman movies being original is that they are just based on comic books. its not as if the comic books were based on some other super hero who has spider like abilities. you are right when you say that spiderman was another campy comic when it come out. that was because they also had other superheroes in the market. for the record, i did not want to compare hollywood movies with local movies. i just wanted to make a point that i think that our movies suck. i cant believe that they are making such a trashy movie. i am sorry if hollywood just creeped in and took over the whole post. there are loads of movies which are inspired by a subject or some issue but then they dont go shamelessly ripping them off. the root of this post is that we love to copy movies and their sequences. its all right if you pay tribute to them by doing them in your own special style. there are ways of doing that without shamelessly ripping them off. there are some directors who pay homage to their idols by using their techniques or whatever they call it. they also learn to form their own style of film making.

    by the way i was being sarcastic when i said that the movie is hyped. its good that the movie is getting some word of mouth publicity as well as on the internet. i hope they do suceed in this project of theirs. 20 million is not a lot for an arthouse money by the way. i am not saying that we should have big budget movies etc. miramax didnt get famous by making movies with silly gimmickry. their special effects were words. anyway i hope we do get some film maker who make a movie for the current generation with some style and panache and without being silly.

  15. _its not as if the comic books were based on some other super hero who has spider like abilities_

    But they were. Shobz, please stop making so many invalid/stupid/illogical points. You’re just making a fool of yourself. For the record, there was a superhero before Spiderman called the “Fly”, with similar powers.

  16. what our industry requires is something which is commercial, but which actually succeeds in what its aiming for. Making a art house movie won’t do any good to our cinema. We have endlessly rehashed our formula movies. If somebody is trying to make a commercial movie, though which is not a regular formula of our masala movies, it should be appreciated.

    and as far as my previous post goes… you didn’t quite get it, did you? I meant that eternal sunshine did no good to Pakistan. Its quite useless making a movie of that caliber (even if somebody in Pakistan can even attempt it). It will just make the makers mad when it will do nothing for the Pakistani cinema. It will go over everybody’s head. Hardly anybody will be able to understand such a concept. I am not sure if you are living under a rock, but your perceptions about our country’s intellect is all wrong.

    From what I have gathered from the trailer, they are atleast trying something which have some commercial aspects, and which can provide something ‘new’ for the pakistani audience. For that they have earned atleast my respect.

  17. shobz,

    Do you believe in movie remixes, if you don’t then start believing

    True the trailer looks as if the movie is a rip off from different movies, but then again you have a choice.

    Just stop comparing Hollywood and Pakistani film industry, if you really think you know so much about screenplay, script, story, direction, hey I have an idea – YOU MAKE A MOVIE – actions are after all louder then words, and these guys have proved it through Couples Only.

  18. there is no such thing as a movie remix. its called a “remake”. the hollywood part just creeped in. by the way i showed this trailer to a few friends of mine and they thought it looked like a ripoff. (3 british asians, 2 brits and 1 dutch gal). one of my brit asian friends thought it was more of a ripoff of dil chahta hai while someone thought it was a ripoff of some movie where three guys fight over one gal.

    au contraire there was a superhero called the fly aka jason troy. he had the power to fly with a magical ring. this one was published by archie comics. then there was another comic called the fly which was published by impact comics and the hero has an amulet which allows him to fly. the former’s real name was thomas troy while the latter’s name was jason troy. hmmm spiderman swings from building to building with his spiderman like powers while the fly flies. so there is no similarity. there were also a hero called the fly man. so i am not making a fool of myself. you may think that my points are illogical and invalid but i dont.

    i am not suggesting that someone make eternal sunshine of the spotless mind. they can make a commercial movie without being silly. i have never seen such wooden actors on screen. the bouncer at the club looks like he is hamming. even the protagonists look like they got the parts coz no one else was interested or maybe coz the guys who directed the movie are playing the protagonists. i guess i must be lost in the woods coz i have never seen a stupid club like that. maybe the movie is interesting after all. its all about life in an alternate universe where karachi has loads of clubs with cheesy strobe lights and where people dance in a perfect rythmn.

    for the record i never said that everyone in pakistan has a low iq. stop misquoting or misinterpreting my comments. i feel bad that we are in 2005 and making a commerical movie of this type is more like a milestone. i have my ideas for making a movie but then i would do a lot of careful planning and research to make sure that my movie doesnt rip anyone off. i am just dying for the movie to come out so i can have everyone eat their words while i have a good laugh. i never said that i am being forced to watch it. i have a choice and i choose not to watch it. this does not mean that i dont have the right to criticise it.

    when the audience gets to see too much of the same thing what makes you think that they are going to watch an inferior version. they would prefer to watch something which is more interesting. however if they made something interesting it would be worth a watch. we should pull ourselves out of the hole we are in and try to make something commerical without being ripoffs to a large extent. i am sure that they can make a better movie with their next effort. eventually the tastes of the audience are going to get more sophisticated. furthermore even if i hate the movie and the absurdity of it i have not implied that i am going picketing against the movie or burning all the prints. i hope it does well.

  19. I think these guys are new in the field; they have made something that they felt might interest others, it did, including me, but then you can’t please everyone.

    May be they are targeting a totally different audience, yes it may be cheesy or rip of, but its their work, if it sets to do what they aim for then they are successful, if it doesn’t , they should try something different if they dare or pack their bags.

    Everyone has a right to their opinions and everyone also has a right to defend their point of view. I just hope some understand instead of dominating the conversation by talking about British or any other audience not liking it, because it’s not meant for them, it does not have the international appeal, true but did the makers set out to do it.

  20. it seems that these guys are living in the way distant dark ages. i am not setting unrealistic goals for them. they can make a good effort without being cheesy. nice way of indirectly pointing out that most of my posts are about the western cinema. i am not talking about international appeal. it should be classy in its own way. the western cinema is not the best anyway. there are plenty of other countries which produce good movies even if they are in a foreign language. the point is that we should not copy the west. period.

    i cant understand why our people cant make a difference. i would love to hear a song in an unadulterated format. its no fun any more coz our folk artistes have started remixing their songs(blecch). the key is to be simple and yet make a good movie without being too loud and stupid. its pointless to keep bringing these points up anymore. i can bet that the movie probably starts off great and then there is no plot.

    the only way this movie can be a hit is if its screened theatrically (i bet there are plenty of loyal “fans” who are gonna buy loads and loads of tickets to ensure its success.) it can also be a success if its released on home video. as long as there are loads of outlets selling it and there is some loyal fan who keeps buying multiple copies. the next thing you know is that they can declare the “experimental” movie a success. (where’s the world coming to). this movie can only be a success when hell freezes over.

  21. Sorry I’ve been MIA for so long. This is just a quick post to say I’m still here and I’m gonna post a long message soon, but we have been busy with our new Telefilm “The Early Days”, we have just finished shooting.

    Those of you who have been having some sort of verbal battle on the comments section of this blog. Please stop. That is not what this site is about and it is certainly not what we are about. We are just making movies for entertainment; please don’t get emotionally estranged here.

    We have genuinely tried to work hard on our stuff and hopefully you will see the visible difference in our next project.

    The fact that the people on this blog are so cool and friendly is the reason I’ve kept doing it.

  22. Now can anyone hint me why the trailer was soo much better than the peace of crap we saw on hum??? but nevertheless gang, well tried…

  23. hmmm i guess i have the right to say “i told you so”. not even the trailer could save this movie. they say that you can tell what a movie is like when you watch the trailer. film makers make movies for entertainment. however there is a difference between crappy entertainment and paisa vasool entertainment. people want to spend their time watching something which makes sense (Even if its entertaining. it should not pretend to be something its not. it didnt cater to any audience.)fortunately i did not have to watch this movie. phew.

  24. ok shobz i gotta admit conceptually that this movie sucks. period. but the editing is sick! These guys might be making shitty stuff atleast they know how to use their equipment properly. and this is a rare sight to see in movies made in pakistan.

  25. Hi everyone.

    read a few posts here, just wanted to say thank you to everyone who liked “Couples Only”, there are many who have not liked it “in parts” and a few who did not like the complete package. As everyone else we are learning the medium, and hopefully our new offering “The Early Days” would remind some of you of their university days, the music video is on air already, the trailer is also uploaded just recently. I hope most of you would like it.

    Thanks again for the kind remarks and the critical comments it really helps us grow.

    Check the trailer at

  26. thats a sorry excuse. editing is just part of the complete package. slick editing is not the main strength of the movie. there are loads of other factors as well. i dont care how good the editing was or how good they used their equipment. the end product should be good. if i wanted to watch crap i would just go and witness two drunken yobs beating the daylights of each other or just watch some crappy indian soap.

  27. yo shobz,

    you are sooper cynical. in anycase i would love to preview some of your work…to see if you’re producing dazzling art (can be commercial) urself. i might be wrong – maybe u are a creative genius. maybe ur work is amazing. anyhow i remember that you mentioned that ppl in hollywood produce really good stuff. man i think that 99% of hollywood movies are shit! complete garbage. they funnel billions of dollars into complete mindless overdone shit! the poor earth’s resources are used up producing utter garbage. what a waste of cutting edge equipment. but if u arent a hot shot (i might be wrong) producer and ur looking for serious art then you should check out movies by stan vanderbeek, stan brackhage, man ray, john whitney sr, michael snow etc…

    so yeah – its really sad that ppl in pakistan dont tackle more serious issues in their movies other than girl-boy stuff and their use of the medium is rather generic. but in the end work talks and b.s walks. so i guess i’d better get back to work.


    p.s. the pakistani movie ‘khamosh pani’ was solid! Sadly only the director was pakistani while the crew was hired from abroad. lol.

  28. hmmm i dont need to defend myself over here.i have already made my point. i dont mind coming back and writing my rejoinders. i dont care if i am being cynical over here. so there’s no need to get all testosteroney over it. furthermore i never claimed to be some sort of director ( i believe that’s the word you were looking for.) i have my own taste in movies. i dont watch mindless crap. i am sure that if you read my posts properly you must have seen how much i love independent movies. “eternal sunshine of the spotless mind” was an indie movie produced by focus features. so please get your facts straight before attacking others. “dancer in the dark” was an excellent movie. i dont have time to waste watching silly movies. khamosh pani was directed by a pakistani director. i am fine with that. she did a good job and she won accolades for that. its a pity that we only go for commercial crap which seems very dated. i am suprised why the “hotshot” directors dont get it when they go about making the movie. they end up hyping the movie which turns out to be shit. furthermore i think every film maker makes a few mistakes while making a movie. despite that their movies are excellent. however some of them ignore every rule in the book and make shitty movies. if i wanted to make a movie i would wait for something i believe in. i do not have to go and make one to prove you all wrong. serious issues are good. however no one is going to recognise pakistani film makers for making crap. you have to make it on the map by doing something groundbreaking. making a movie which has been attempted a million times is like making yet another teen movie in the states. intellegent film makers make a movie which puts them on the map.

    ps. thanks for enlightening me with the names of directors i didnt know about. its really changed my life. i am sooooo thrilled. what would i do if you werent there to guide me. ( i am sure you can see i am being really saracastic here.) word of advice they dont call them art movies anymore. arthouse is what you are looking for. so thanks for the crash course in arthouse movie directors 101. it helped me a lot. i am sure you must have learnt a lot yourself.

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