Silent Waters (2004)


Critic Consensus: Set in the late 1970s, Silent Waters is a well-meaning but plodding look at the rise of extremism in Pakistan.


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Movie Info

Pakistani filmmaker Sabiha Sumar directs the political drama Khamosh Pani (Silent Waters). Set in a small Pakistani village in 1979, the film follows widowed family matriarch Ayesha (Kirron Kher) as she struggles under the martial law that declares her country a Muslim state. Her teenage son Saleem (Aamir Malik) is encouraged by his wealthy girlfriend Zubeida (Shilpa Shukla) to get a job. However, he ends up hanging out with a bunch of Muslim fundamentalists and causing trouble for the Sikh pilgrims. Meanwhile, Ayesha remembers secrets from her past awakened by the arrival of the Sikh pilgrim Jaswant (Navtej Johar). Silent Waters won the Golden Leopard award at the 2003 Locarno International Film Festival.

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Critic Reviews for Silent Waters

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (8)

By the time you understand the meaning of its title, Sabiha Sumar's film has delivered an emotional punch.

Mar 11, 2005 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Even behind the veil, the movie tells us, there is dissent -- cinematic dissent.

Feb 11, 2005 | Rating: 3/5

Silent Waters means well, but falls way short of its mark of enlightening the world to the plight of South Asian women in this period of history. It just isn't believable enough.

Nov 12, 2004 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

The filmmakers provide a well-meaning, well-timed Pakistani portrait.

Oct 8, 2004 | Rating: 3/4
Top Critic

Although taking place 25 years in the past, director-writer Sabiha Sumar's debut feature has relevance in the world as we now know it.

Oct 8, 2004 | Rating: 3/4

Sabiha Sumar's debut feature could scarcely be more relevant to Pakistan's present, or, given this country's history of backing such repressive regimes, to ours.

Oct 6, 2004 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Silent Waters

Beautiful film that deals with the remnants of the issues of partition. Family secrets are unveiled when Sikh pilgrams arrive in Pakistan and the eldest son goes fundamentalist. Saddening.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

Emotionally gripping. I felt connections with both the Pakistani Muslims and the Hindi Sikhs during this Islamic movement.

Dannielle Albert
Dannielle Albert

Super Reviewer

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