Osama

What a powerhouse of an Afghani movie “Osama” made by Siddiq Barmak, tells the story of life under Taliban rule in Afghanistan. An unnamed young Afghan girl and her mother are caught in the maelstrom that is Taliban in Afghanistan. Under Taliban rule, women are not allowed to study or work and not even allowed to walk on the streets unaccompanied by a male relative. So when the hospital in which the Afghan girl’s mother closes under Taliban orders, she is left bereft of any income and the three of them i.e. the girl, her mother who is a doctor and her grandmother are left penniless. Till the grandmother decides to dress up the girl as a boy and send her to work. There is disgust everywhere among the Afghan residents but there is fear also of their harsh rule and retribution. The girl is named Osama by a street urchin who sees through her disguise and made to study in madraasa and perform ablutions. Till she gets caught. There is a heart rending and gut wrenching scene when the wailing girl is forced to hang from a well – it breaks the heart. In the end the film shows the mullah to whom the girl is forced to marry already has three wives and keeps all his wives under heavy lock and key. Brilliantly made movie by Barmak, it is a hard hitting commentary on the Taliban rule. The camera work is quite spectacular and Barmak has managed to extract maximum from all his performers and most of all from Marina Golbahari as Osama. It is both breath taking and brutal in its intensity. This movie was apparently made after the fall of the Taliban in 2003. 

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