Cert 15 Stars 3
There are few more promising dramatic scenarios than teenage romance in a war torn country, but this modern day coming-of-age tale is more concerned with raising awareness for its tragic real life background than delivering gripping spectacle.
Noor is a British teen visiting her grandparents who live in Kashmir, the poverty stricken border country which has been the centre of a war between India and Pakistani since 1947.
Zara Webb’s smartphone wielding attitude is wholly convincing, but she occasionally struggles to carry the emotional weight asked of her.
Through her relationship with a scooter-riding local charmer played by Shivam Raina, the script explores the tragedy of the thousands of ‘disappeared’ men who have been taken by the army, leaving the village women not knowing if they are wives or widows.
Threadbare thriller elements and grim reality sit uneasily with the underpowered romance and too many characters exist simply to explain a point of view.
There’s no doubting the filmmakers sincere intent but this may have been better structured as a straightforward documentary.