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cruisinred Feb 3rd, 2006 09:52 AM

Films about India, or taking place in India?
We'd like to watch some films about India to get ready for our trip in May.
Would welcome some suggestions for films to include in our india film fest.

So far on the list we have:
Moonsoon Wedding
Bride & Prejudice (worth watching?)
A Passage to India
Octopussy (for the scences in Udaipur)

pat Feb 3rd, 2006 09:56 AM

Try "Heat and dust" It is very Indian and has great scenery. My favorite movie on India.

Femi Feb 3rd, 2006 10:19 AM

'Cotton Mary' from a combination I love, the author Ruth Jhabvala, and the Merchant/Ivory duo.

Copied from Yahoo Movies:
When Lily, a British woman living on her family's estate in post-independence India circa 1954, gives birth prematurely in a former British hospital while her journalist husband is away on assignment, she turns to Cotton Mary, an Anglo-Indian nurse who promises that "God will feed the child." "God," as it turns out, is Mary's crippled sister, Blossom, a wet nurse who lives in a nearby alms-house. Mary brings her the baby for secret feedings, and introduces her niece into Lily's household as her obsession with whiteness and the lives of her masters threatens to spin out of control.

rkkwan Feb 3rd, 2006 10:27 AM

Some newer movies -

Holy Smoke with Kate Winslet
Bourne Supremacy (the first 1/4 or so)

kerikeri Feb 3rd, 2006 11:36 AM

the one with patrick swayze- is it city of god? set in calcutta.

Kippy Feb 3rd, 2006 11:59 AM

Gandhi - Richard Attenburgh's epic about the life of Mahatma Gandhi

The Jewel in the Crown which was a televison dramatisation of

Kippy Feb 3rd, 2006 12:08 PM

oops - not sure what happened there!

To continue-

The Jewel in the Crown TV dramatisation of Paul Scott's Raj Quartet

Salaam Bombay - moving film about street children set in the slums of Bombay

and one of my all-time favourite films -
Pather Panchali directed by Satyajit Ray which is a simple story about the lives of a family in a rural village in Bengal. It's in black and white and is a slow film which pulls you in and is emotionally very powerful.

Craig Feb 3rd, 2006 12:43 PM

I second the vote for Gandhi, one of the great films of all time.

cruisinred Feb 3rd, 2006 12:48 PM

I'm answering my own post, but I just remembered another one: The Far Pavillions....
I think it was done in the early 80's
" HBO's first mini-series, set in 19th century British colonial India, involves war battles, love, treachery and intrigue as well as love and honor involving a romance between a British calvary officer and an Indian princess who has been promised in an arranged marriage to a despotic ruler."

Lyndie Feb 3rd, 2006 04:53 PM

Bride & Prejudice is set in Amritsar & Goa. It's very entertaining & gives some insight into India's middle/higher classes. The music & dance is typical of many Bolywood movies and the costumes are sensational. We loved it!

We also loved Phoolan Devi, the Bandit Queen but it may be out of print!

sfmaster Feb 3rd, 2006 05:05 PM

Just watched Gandhi this week to gear up for our India trip. Lovely movie.

We have also enjoyed Bride and Prejudice and love Monsoon Wedding.

Kippy Feb 4th, 2006 02:56 AM


Bandit Queen is way up there in my list of Indian films but it isn't easy viewing. I've seen it several times now and have read I Phoolan Devi, her autobiography (written from her spoken word as she could neither read or write).

I find the film gruelling because of the utter abuse, humiliation and ordeal that she suffered from childhood in a very poor low caste family. It is such a powerful film, very controversial in India when it was released. Inspiring because she survived, became a folk heroine for low caste women. Many people have tried to discredit her story.

As a postscript as far as I know after 11 years imprisonment without a trial went on to become a politician and then was murdered in 2001. There were conspiracy theories surrounding the murder.

fuzzylogic Feb 4th, 2006 04:49 AM

Some brilliant suggestions so far - especially "Jewel in the Crown" - check out the books too. Paul Scott's novels are sublime and so all the more credit to Granada for turning them into a TV series that still stands the test of time after almost 25 years.

Others that haven't been mentioned yet:

Satyajit Ray's "The Chess Players".
David Lean's "A Passage to India".

Books, though, are the way to go. In case you are into reading I'll mention just two:

"The god of small things' Arundhati Roy.

"India: A million mutinies now: V S Naiprul.

India is one of those places where knowing something about the culture and history adds enormously to the experience - so good for you.

Happy viewing and happy travels.

hornbill Feb 4th, 2006 05:18 AM

i would like to recommend a book called holy cow by sarah mcdonald which is a humorous account of an australian radio dj time in india, her spiritual journey and self discovery in modern india. its a true account but with some liberties taken.

another indian movie that you might want to check out is fire directed by deepa mehta who is a canadian indian. this movie created a furore in india when it came out because it dealt with love that developed between two sisters-in-law trapped in unhappy marriages

cruisinred Feb 4th, 2006 05:26 AM

I was also going to do a posting on books, but it is nice to have the book and movie recommendations all together.
I LOVED holy cow...some other great India related books I read recently were:
Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri ..she also wrote the Namesake

A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry, takes place in Bombay, emotionally wrenching sense of the poverty of India...but beautifully written

bkkmei Feb 4th, 2006 06:31 AM

since we're talking about book/film combos, City of God by Dominique Lapierre is an excellent and thought-provoking book.

nks267 Feb 4th, 2006 06:51 AM

Shantaram by Gregory Roberts is an excellent read. Once you're done with Shantaram, I would recommend reading Maximum City. The latter complements the former!

Lyndie Feb 4th, 2006 04:28 PM

Kippy-I loved that movie. I must have seen it 3 -4 times. Thought provoking & troubling but necessary to see if one is to understand a little about India's past treatment of women.

nks-Is Maximum City by same author as Shantaram? It's one of my favourite reads after Love in the Time of Cholera, Remains of the Day & Bone People. He writes like I wish I could!

jules39 Feb 4th, 2006 04:45 PM

I just watched "Born into Brothels" very moving doc about kids born & raised in brothels in Calcutta.
There are a lot of books that really give you a feel for India. I am afraid I am struggling to remember correct titles but there is one I think called "Travelling in the Monsoon" which I really enjoyed. Others I won't rep[eat the ones already mentioned...
"Third Class Ticket" Heather Wood
"Karma Cola" Gita Mehta
"A River Sutra" Gita Mehta
"SLowly DOwn the Ganges" Eric Newby
"The Death of Vishnu" Manil Suri
"A Princess Remembers" Gayatri Devi

You should be abole to look these up on Amazon or the like and see if they appeal to you.

fuzzylogic Feb 5th, 2006 03:09 AM

Jules39 - I wonder if the title you are searching for is "Chasing the Monsoon" by Alexander Frater - but then maybe not?? great book.

Also second "A Fine Balance" - and am just finishing another of Rohinton Mistry's novels - "Family Matters". This too is a wonderful read.

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