Gul Makai Movie Review: Unenthusiastic Portrayal of an ambitious life of Malala Yousafzai

Cast: Reem Shaikh, Atul Kulkarni, Divya Dutta

Director: H.E. Amjad Khan

Critic rating: 1.5/5


Gul Makai shows the journey of 2014 Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai. It accounts for the brave journey and life’s fight of Malala Yousafzai.

Hence, the story started from her upbringing in the Swat Valley in northwestern Pakistan and ended in being a conqueror for giving free education to all the ladies. The film’s story is of that time when in 2009, Taliban’s gunmen grab Swat Valley, and then Saria law was applied over its people.

However, Malala talked for the rights of women. She was especially focused on girl’s educational rights. She started blogging at BBC Urdu against the misbehavior that takes place with them in Swat Valley.

Malala continued her activeness and got support and recognition in the entire world. The moment Taliban gunmen as organization opposite for girls education knows it, they find and shot her. She got Indian activist Kailash Satyarthi in 2014 as well.


In the movie ‘Gul Makai,’ Om Puri had done only two scenes. Om Puri passed away in January 2017. So, if we saw the movie’s journey, so it has been made for three years as 2017, 2018, and 2019.

As time passes continuously, you will be a wonder to know if it was the part of any B-graded film around three decades back.

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Malala Yousafzai’s story is much more deserving in the perspective of the character, and it’s the description.

Even, the director H.E. Amjad Khan chose an outstanding historical story. He changed it into an excuse to exclude the standard commercial platitudes.

Bhaswati Chakraborty’s script shows his objective to tell Malala’s life beyond the story as well.

He tried to show up the background in Pakistan’s Swat Valley at the time of 2000.

Even the background, environment, and the political appearance that too at the era of Talibani terror.

Then it was clear that the director Amjad Khan ji only showed the violence and drama in the background.

Even we can say that the accurate picturization was not there in the movie.

The film is of two hours and ten minutes, but the life story of the film’s title hero, Malala, remains an oversimplified sideshow in its own biopic.

However, the narrative of the story was so weak that they couldn’t decide the target to focus on.

They confused about what’s their target to show, whether it’s the Pakistani Army, fight from the Taliban, or Malala’s life, or Malala’s father, Ziauddin Yousafzai (Atul Kulkarni).

Her father was himself a school’s principal that was a supporter of women’s right to education as well as their right to live without the house.

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Gul Makai refers to the name of Malala, which she used for blogging against the Taliban’s overruling.

Especially, she did everything for girl’s education and their rights.

Reem Sheikh is cast as Malala Yousafzai. She never really performed even more than the half-role that she is given to play.

In comparison, a screenplay that captures the Taliban from the eyes of her protagonist shows no attempt to see the status of.

Most of the shooting of this movie Gul Makai takes place around 2007-2008.

At that time, the Swat was stricken, and the director H.E. Amjad Khan might wish to narrate serious tone with strange, horrible shock in war catastrophe.

He could make sure that the film slowed down with the masquerading computation. The complete emphasis on execution becomes a film of all effects.

If we look at the other character of the movie like Malala’s father, Ziauddin Yousafzai, or mother, Pekai Yousafzai.

The role was given to Atul Kulkarni and Divya Dutta, but they can’t fulfill the need of the role completely.

And for showing Talibani fundamentalists, Arif Zakaria, Mukesh Rishi, and Abhimanyu Singh. They were cast as Taliban fanatics, arranged for one-dimensional villain roles.

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They remind film militants of the stereotypes of the nineties in this half-baked fare.

It is sad that H.E. Amjad Khan’s directed movie Gul Makai doesn’t show the problems of Malala’s life through which she has to suffer a lot.

Moreover, if we look at the American filmmaker, Davis Guggenheim’s documentary movie “He Named Me Malala” in 2015.

While the film is not a vigorous exercise on the subject but, it still gives you a brief idea about the personality of ​​Malala Yousafzai.

If you want an even more accurate idea about Malala’s life, her struggle as well as death. Then, you can always buy a copy of her autobiography.