8.1/10
6,752
24 user 25 critic

Mother India (1957)

In this melodrama, a poverty-stricken woman raises her sons through many trials and tribulations. But no matter the struggles, always sticks to her own moral code.

Director:

(as Mehboob)

Writers:

(dialogue) (as Vajahat Mirza), (dialogue)
Top Rated Indian Movies #69 | Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Shamu (Radha's Husband)
...
Sukhilala (as Kanhaiya Lal)
Jilloo Maa
...
Champa
Chanchal
Sheela Naik ...
Kamla
Mukri ...
Shambu (as Muqri)
Siddiqui
Ram Shastri
Fakir Mohammad ...
(as Faqir Mohomed)
Geeta
Hameeda
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Storyline

The film begins with the finishing of a water canal for the village set in the present. Radha (Nargis), as the mother of the village, is asked to open the canal and remembers back to her past when she was newly married, mirroring the new independence of India. The wedding between Radha and Shamu (Raaj Kumar) was paid for by Radha's mother-in-law, who got a loan from the moneylender Sukhilala. This event starts the spiral of poverty and hardship that Radha endures. The conditions of the loan are disputed, but the village elders decide in favor of the moneylender, after which Shamu and Radha are forced to pay three-quarters of their crop as interest on the loan of 500 rupees. While trying to use more of their land to alleviate their poverty, Shamu's arms are crushed by a boulder. He is shamed by his helplessness and is humiliated by others in the village. Deciding that he is no use to his family, he leaves and does not return. Soon after this, Radha's mother-in-law dies. Radha continues... Written by gavin@sunny_deol2009@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

village | poverty | field | farm | bandit | See All (75) »

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Family

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 February 1957 (India)  »

Also Known As:

Madre India  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Gevacolor) (negative)| (Technicolor) (prints)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Was nominated for an Academy Award in the Best Foreign-Language Film category. It was India's first Oscar nomination. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Elaan (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Na Main Bhagwan Hoon
Performed by Mohammad Rafi
Lyrics by Shakeel Badayuni
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User Reviews

 
A great movie - must-see
1 July 1999 | by See all my reviews

What more can you ask for in a movie? A rich story, excellent acting, great songs, technically superb. The story is about Radha played by Nargis who works hard to bring up her two children, played by Sunil Dutt and Rajender Kumar, after her husband goes away. Birju played by Dutt is the more flamboyant one who gets in trouble with the village Lala's daughter and runs away and becomes a dacoit. The end is the most unexpected part of the movie.

Made on a large canvas, this movie runs like an epic. This Mehboob Khan's effort came very close to winning the Oscar for the Best Foreign Film. During the shooting of this film Dutt saved Nargis from a fire and soon after that they were married.

Naushad's music is another highlight of the film with some great songs like "Duniya Mein Hum Aaye Hain", "Nagri-Nagri Dware-Dware", "Holi Aayi Re Kanhai", "Tan Rang Lo Ji" etc.

All in all, this is possibly one of the best Hindi films ever made.


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