After a tense few days of will-they-won’t-they, the government of Pakistan finally cleared Saim Sadiq’s film Joyland for limited release — the Punjab government has still placed a ban on the screening of the film — and audiences have been raving about the movie ever since.
The film revolves around the themes of patriarchy, gender and identity. It follows the story of Haider, the youngest son of a typical middle-class patriarch who wants nothing more than his two sons to give grandsons. However, unbeknownst to his father, Haider becomes the backup dancer for a transgender dancer, and eventually the two fall in love.
The film was banned a week ago for ‘not conforming to moral standards’ , and the ban was reversed on Thursday. Shortly after the notification from the federal government, the Punjab government reinstated the ban.
However, people have still been able to watch the movie in Islamabad and Sindh, and they have nothing but good things to say about it.
Just came back from Joyland's screening. The entire film is in its moments, and it has plenty. And when they arrive, they suck you in a little more each time. By the end, you find yourself sitting there at the rolling credits not wanting to immediately leave.#ReleaseJoyland
— Faizan. (@thoraoffbeat) November 18, 2022
Just watched Joyland. At a loss for words.
I can’t believe there is a possibility that people won’t be able to watch this beautiful, beautiful, absolutely stunning film. Still tearing up.
— zohair (@shayadzohair) November 18, 2022
.@rasti_farooq is so good in joyland btw and definitely the star of the movie for me. she has the most well-done character development among all imo. it’s so beautiful and tragic and i haven’t stopped thinking about it
— n (@unfortunabeel) November 18, 2022
Just watched Joyland and it was truly amazing! I have so many thoughts, everyone please go watch it as soon as it releases because I NEED to talk about this film with whoever is willing in painstaking detail
— Amna Chaudhry (@amnachaudhry03) November 17, 2022
Just watched #Joyland. It's a disservice to the general public to ban such a nuanced, beautifully haunting film. May it go forth and win big.
— Sajeer Shaikh (@sajeershaikh) November 18, 2022
Just watched Joyland and felt the weight of all my feelings while leaving the cinema. It was exhilarating and beautiful and sad, fleetingly and all at once
— Aymen (@cybersphynxx) November 18, 2022
It’s a watershed moment in our fight for civic liberties.
Let nation think and breathe again. Have trust in the judgement of common people. Soon we will be back where we were when ziaism destroyed it all.