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Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

Oscar-nominated ‘Lagaan’ director Gowariker’s latest highlights the little-known ‘Chittagong Uprising’ against the British in pre-independent India. Abhishek Bachchan is Surjyada, the leader of the IRA (‘Indian Republican Army’), who along with his naïve band of largely teenage male soldiers, led five simultaneous armed attacks against ‘the whites’ on 18 April 1930 in east Bengal, India (now Bangladesh). Gowariker reduces the fraught freedom struggle to a bloody ‘cops n robbers shoot-em-up’ with, of course, some songs. To say characterisation is dosa-thin would be an overstatement. Consequently, we never know the motivation behind the non-Gandhian means employed except for the contentious nationalistic (Hindu?) war cry ‘Vande Madaram’ (‘Victory to the Motherland’) which every murderer-patriot frequently shouts. Worthy and watchable, but this is bolly-Indian history: don’t expect depth or complexity.

Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Friday December 3 2010
Duration: 170 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Ashutosh Gowariker
Cast: Abhishek Bachchan
Deepika Padukone
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