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Sitara – Let Girls Dream review: No words but says a lot

Everyone has the right to dream. But that right isn’t always protected and nourished. Around the world, millions have their future decided for them. Sitara: Let Girls Dream, directed by academy award-winner filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, is the tale of one such child whose dreams are never even given a chance.


The 15-minute animated silent short film is set in Pakistan, where Obaid-Chinoy hails from. Devoid of dialogues, we’re introduced to Pari, 14-year-old girl who dreams of becoming a pilot and flies paper planes with her younger sister Mehr on the terrace of their house.

Slowly enters an uneasiness in the scenes, aggravated by the expressions of Pari’s mother. Her father has already fixed her marriage with a much older man. What about her dreams of reaching the skies? Will her father realise his mistake? That’s what the rest of the narrative deals with.


There are no actors since it’s all animated. But the direction deserves appreciation. It’s not easy to tell a story without using conventional methods.


The grave issue of child marriage is tackled expertly through the change of tone with every few scenes. There are literally no words in the whole film, and yet it says so much in its meagre runtime.

With the lack of dialogues, the sound proves pivotal in foreshadowing issues for the viewers. The message is also strong, and might actually move someone and prevent them from making the same mistakes.


The limited time and no dialogues do hinder what could have potentially been said. The film does justice with whatever it has, but when it would be unfair to compare it with other short films which do have much more.

More information on the issue of child marriage could also have been provided. There’s only one sentence at the end, and personally, I would have liked to have learned more.

Worth it?

For sure. It doesn’t take up a lot of your time and does stir emotions. The first Pakistani Netflix Original will definitely make you feel more sympathetic towards those who’ve suffered this plight.

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