Mangal Pandey: The Rising
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|Directed by||Ketan Mehta|
|Produced by||Bobby Bedi|
|Written by||Farrukh Dhondy|
|Distributed by||Yash Raj Films|
|Release date(s)||August 12, 2005|
|Running time||150 min.|
|Budget||Rs. 330M (estimated)|
Mangal Pandey: The Rising (Indian Title) or The Ballad of Mangal Pandey (International Title) (released in India on August 12, 2005) is an Indian movie based on the life of Mangal Pandey who is known for his role as a leader in the Indian rebellion of 1857 which led to the downfall of the British East India Company.
Aamir Khan, a leading Bollywood actor, plays the lead role of Mangal Pandey. Mangal Pandey was a sepoy who helped spark the Indian rebellion of 1857. Subsequently the mutiny was called "The Sepoy Mutiny" or "The Sepoy Rebellion" by most of the English-speaking world, while Indians referred to it as the "First War of Independence".
1857 AD. The entire Indian sub continent is ruled by … a company. The British East India Company. The most successful business enterprise in history. The company has its own laws, its own administration, its own army. It controls the destiny of one fifth of humanity.
Mangal Pandey - The Rising is an epic tale of friendship, betrayal, love and sacrifice set against the backdrop of what the British called the sepoy mutiny but which for the Indians was the First War of Independence. ‘Company Raj’ as it was known, had been plundering the country, treating the locals unjustly and causing widespread resentment. After a hundred years of subjugation, the Indian consciousness is rising through the revolutionary prospect of change and self-rule.
During a fierce battle in one of the Afgan wars that the Company fought in the mid-century, Mangal Pandey, the heroic sepoy, saves the life of his British commanding officer William Gordon. Gordon is indebted to Mangal and a strong friendship develops between them, transcending consideration of rank and race. The friendship is soon challenged by the introduction of a new rifle called the Enfield. The new rifle has come with a new cartridge which is rumoured to be coated with the grease of cow and pig fat. The new cartridge has to be bitten before it is loaded, which ignites anger and resentment among the Indian sepoys. The cow is sacred to the Hindus, the pig forbidden to the Muslims. They will not touch such a kartoos, it would defile them.
Set in one of the most beautiful countries on earth, told across the divides of time, Mangal Pandey – The Rising tells the tale of friends, lovers and enemies, exploiters and exploited, and the growth and awareness of a man and a nation. It is a story of one man and his dream of freedom. This sweeping epic is based on real historical events, seen as a trigger for Indian independence.
The Rising is an epic tale of friendship, love, loss and betrayal set against the backdrop of the Indian Mutiny of 1857. This sweeping epic is based on real historical events, seen as a trigger for Indian independence. It has been filmed in India over 6 months with a mix of British and Indian cast. British colonial rulers are plundering the country for all its worth, treating the locals unjustly and causing widespread resentment. Worst of all they are using the Indians as sepoys, the infantry of the army, to control and regulate the population.
After a hundred years of subjugation, India is awakening to the revolutionary prospect of change and self-rule.
During a fierce battle in the Afghan wars of the mid-century, Mangal (Aamir Khan), an heroic sepoy, rescues his British commanding officer William Gordon (Toby Stephens). The event creates a strong friendship and binding loyalty between them that transcends consideration of rank and race.
Heera (Rani Mukerji) is a native gypsy girl who has been kidnapped and sold to Lol Bibi (Kiron Kher). Lol Bibi turns Heera into a prostitute and makes her work for her. She soon catches the eyes of Mangal Pandey and a liaison follows.
The friendship is soon challenged, first by arrival of a charming and beautiful young aristocrat, Emily Kent (Coral Beed), and then by the introduction of controversial new gun cartridges among the troops. The relationship is complicated further when Gordon saves a beautiful young native girl, Jwala (Amisha Patel), from the funeral pyre of her late husband, and falls in love with her.
The new cartridges require soldiers to bite through their greased casing, made of animal fat of cows and pigs, and suspicion spreads that the British are ignoring religious beliefs in favor of cheap ammunition, and polluting their Muslim and Hindu soldiers, as the cow is a sacred animal to the Hindus and the pig is a detested animal to the Muslims. Gordon assures Mangal that the cartridges are free from pollution and demonstrating his total trust in Gordon, Mangal bites the cartridge. The soldiers soon discover that the cartridges really are greased by animal fat and the rumour of this imposed pollution is the spark that ignites the powder keg of resentment in the country. Mutiny breaks out, with Mangal growing in stature in his attempt to lead the Indian people to freedom.
The film has received a mixed welcome globally. In India, it has rekindled interest in Mangal Pandey, the first hero of the Sepoy Mutiny.
The controversies surrounding the movie reached Delhi High Court on Thursday with two of the descendants of the martyr seeking a ban on the screening of the film. They alleged the film portrayed the patriot in poor light. Raghunath Pandey, vice principal of Kendriya Vidyalaya at Janakpuri and his son Omkar Nath Pandey - descendants of the martyr's brother Lalit Pandey - filed a suit seeking an unconditional apology from all those involved in the making of the film for allegedly showing Mangal Pandey (Played by Aamir Khan) as a drunkard involved in a relationship with a prostitute (played by Rani Mukerji). it was a hit but was not as successful as LAGAAN;once upon a time in india
- Aamir Khan as Mangal Pandey
- Rani Mukerji as Heera
- Toby Stephens as Captain William Gordon
- Kiron Kher as Lol Bibi
- Coral Beed as Emily Kent
- Amisha Patel as Jwala
- Joel Guyton Lee as Adjutant Bunbury