MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 248 this week

A Passage to India (1984)

7.3
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 10,592 users  
Reviews: 77 user | 48 critic

Cultural mistrust and false accusations doom a friendship in British colonial India between an Indian doctor, an Englishwoman engaged to marry a city magistrate, and an English educator.

Director:

Writers:

(by), (based on the novel by), 2 more credits »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 24 titles
created 21 Feb 2012
 
a list of 23 titles
created 11 Apr 2012
 
a list of 21 titles
created 10 Jan 2013
 
a list of 24 titles
created 07 Feb 2013
 
a list of 26 titles
created 1 month ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: A Passage to India (1984)

A Passage to India (1984) on IMDb 7.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of A Passage to India.
Won 2 Oscars. Another 19 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Apollo 13 (1995)
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Three astronauts must devise a strategy to return to Earth safely after their spacecraft undergoes massive internal damage.

Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Tom Hanks, Bill Paxton, Kevin Bacon
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The story of the original Mercury 7 astronauts and their macho, seat-of-the-pants approach to the space program.

Director: Philip Kaufman
Stars: Sam Shepard, Scott Glenn, Ed Harris
Adventure | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In 1931, three aboriginal girls escape after being plucked from their homes to be trained as domestic staff and set off on a trek across the Outback.

Director: Phillip Noyce
Stars: Everlyn Sampi, Tianna Sansbury, Kenneth Branagh
Black Robe (1991)
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

In the 17th century a Jesuit priest and a young companion are escorted through the wilderness of Quebec by Algonquin Indians to find a distant mission in the dead of winter. The Jesuit ... See full summary »

Director: Bruce Beresford
Stars: Lothaire Bluteau, Aden Young, Sandrine Holt
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Fletcher Christian successfully leads a revolt against the ruthless Captain Bligh on the HMS Bounty. However, Bligh returns one year later, hell bent on avenging his captors.

Director: Frank Lloyd
Stars: Charles Laughton, Clark Gable, Franchot Tone
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The Egyptian Prince, Moses, learns of his true heritage as a Hebrew and his divine mission as the deliverer of his people.

Director: Cecil B. DeMille
Stars: Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Anne Baxter
Gallipoli (1981)
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Two Australian sprinters face the brutal realities of war when they are sent to fight in the Gallipoli campaign in Turkey during World War I.

Director: Peter Weir
Stars: Mel Gibson, Mark Lee, Bill Kerr
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The Bounty leaves Portsmouth in 1787. Its destination: to sail to Tahiti and load bread-fruit. Captain Bligh will do anything to get there as fast as possible, using any means to keep up a ... See full summary »

Directors: Lewis Milestone, Carol Reed
Stars: Marlon Brando, Trevor Howard, Richard Harris
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In the 16th century, the ruthless and insane Don Lope de Aguirre leads a Spanish expedition in search of El Dorado.

Director: Werner Herzog
Stars: Klaus Kinski, Ruy Guerra, Helena Rojo
Adventure | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Christopher Columbus' discovery of the Americas and the effect this has on the indigenous people.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Gérard Depardieu, Armand Assante, Sigourney Weaver
The Mission (1986)
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

18th century Spanish Jesuits try to protect a remote South American Indian tribe in danger of falling under the rule of pro-slavery Portugal.

Director: Roland Joffé
Stars: Robert De Niro, Jeremy Irons, Ray McAnally
Quiz Show (1994)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Dick Goodwin discovers game shows are fixed: Charles Van Doren is fed answers so he beats Herbie Stempel.

Director: Robert Redford
Stars: Ralph Fiennes, John Turturro, Rob Morrow
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Antonia Pemberton ...
Michael Culver ...
...
Ali
...
...
Ann Firbank ...
...
Sandra Hotz ...
Stella
Edit

Storyline

Circa 1920, during the Indian British rule, Dr. Aziz H. Ahmed was born and brought up in India. He is proficient in English, and wears Western style clothing. He meets an old lady, Mrs. Moore, at a mosque, who asks him to accompany her and her companion, Adela Quested, for sight-seeing around some caves. Thereafter the organized life of Aziz is turned upside down when Adela accuses him of molesting her in a cave. Aziz is arrested and brought before the courts, where he learns that the entire British administration is against him, and would like to see him found guilty and punished severely, to teach all native Indians what it means to molest a British citizen. Aziz is all set to witness the "fairness" of the British system, whose unofficial motto is "guilty until proved innocent." Written by rAjOo (gunwanti@hotmail.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

doctor | india | mosque | english | magistrate | See more »

Taglines:

David Lean, the Director of "Doctor Zhivago", "Lawrence of Arabia" and "The Bridge on the River Kwai", invites you on . . .[A Passage to India]


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

25 January 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Passage to India  »

Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$26,400,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Two of the actors had acted in a 1965 Play of The Month version of the Novel. Saeed Jaffrey in the same role and Ishaq Bux as Alli. See more »

Goofs

When Adela, Mrs. Moore, and Dr. Aziz are riding the elephant, the first close-up shot of Adela and Dr. Aziz shows certain landmarks on the rock in the background. The next shot is a long shot of the elephant's feet as it walks. The third shot is another close-up of Adela and Dr. Aziz passing the same landmarks at the same starting point. See more »

Quotes

Professor Godbhole: Nothing you do will change the outcome.
Richard Fielding: So "Do nothing!" Is that your philosophy?
Professor Godbhole: My philosophy is you can do what you like... but the outcome will be the same.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Himalaya with Michael Palin: A Passage to India (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

In a Monastery Garden
(uncredited)
Written by Albert W. Ketèlbey
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
"Adventures do occur, but not punctually"
9 March 2011 | by (Ruritania) – See all my reviews

If the 1970s saw the birth of modern cinema of blockbusters and mixed-up genres, the 1980s saw the death of what went before. It was during that decade that those actors and filmmakers from the classic era who were still around made their final bows. A Passage to India is the last picture directed by David Lean, one of the most influential and respected directors of his age, and one who, having his most universal successes in the late 50s and early 60s, in many ways bridges the gap between the two generations.

A Passage to India is adapted from the novel by E.M. Forster, a work ahead of its time when published in 1924. It condemns the prejudice and injustice of the British administration in India, but it rejects a confrontational attitude, instead looking progressively at Anglo-Indian relations. The story's only real flaw is that, whatever it does in the cause of racial harmony, it undoes for perceptions of women, trotting out as it does the old cliché of women falsely and hysterically accusing men of rape. And yet Forster was an intelligent and even-handed enough writer that he at least attempts to explain and sympathise with Miss Quested's position, something which the motion pictures echoes, actually beginning and ending the film with her story, and showing the courtroom testimonial from her perspective. Released a couple of years after the Oscar-winning Gandhi, A Passage to India could be seen as a companion piece, or at least part of a similar trend in British cinema of making up for the decades of gung-ho pictures about the empire. However, while the earlier picture is factually objective, A Passage to India is a work of pure drama; deep, spiritual and humanistic.

For A Passage to India director David Lean also acted as editor, the first time he had done so in forty years. The cutting is particularly tight and in tune with the imagery, and you can see many fine examples of the "surprise" editing that characterises Lean pictures. So we get a sudden cut from the dullness and closeness of the English travel office, to the bright open space and sudden burst of noise at the Indian port. Many scenes begin, not with an establishing shot, but an attention-grabbing close-up, such as the Union Jack on the car bonnet that kicks off the scene where Victor Banerjee and Art Malik get run off the road. Lean didn't invent such impactful editing, but he helped to make a popular style of it, and you can see its influence in many contemporary pictures, including the one that beat A Passage to India at the Oscars, Amadeus. Lean is constantly throwing ideas at us as fast as we can absorb them, a reaction shot of some Indian women amid the pomp at the quay, Nigel Havers's smug smile after coldly passing sentence on an Indian. His imagery of evocative landscapes and shimmering moonlight as well as the recurring "Mrs Moore" chant bring out the mystical tone of the novel. A Passage to India demonstrates, at the end of Lean's career, his intelligent craftsmanship and his continued relevance to modern cinema.

And yet, elsewhere this comes across as a somewhat out-of-time production. The jolly, jaunty Maurice Jarre score is woefully inappropriate, although bizarrely enough it won an Oscar. Jarre referenced Arabic music for Lawrence of Arabia and Russian music for Doctor Zhivago; why could he not reference Indian themes for this picture which so much requires the indigenous touch? Another mistake is the casting of Alec Guinness as an Indian character. Not that ethnic authenticity is an absolute necessity, but this Godbole is a somewhat ridiculous figure, and I'm reminded that one of Guinness's earliest roles for Lean was as a comedy big-nosed Jew in Oliver Twist. Lean's formal style was modern and flexible, but in other areas his thinking was from another era.

On the whole however, this is an incredibly well-made work of cinema. Most of the cast perform well, the standouts being Victor Banerjee and Peggy Ashcroft. Their scene together in the mosque (a pivotal moment in the novel) is given the correct level of warmth and dignity that it requires. There are also memorable turns from two of the finest Indian character actors, Saeed Jaffrey and Roshan Seth, as well as nice appearances from British sitcom actors Richard Wilson (aka Victor Meldrew) and Clive Swift (aka Richard Bucket) as trumped-up Englishmen. The ending has a triumphal sense of poignancy, and the large scope of the picture is so delicately tempered with intimacy. It's a fitting coda to Lean's career, drawing together the epics for which he won awards and the emotionally-charged dramas with which he began.


4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Better without Sir Alec ... Romojo
Judy Davis clash shaguniitb
Confused by ending honeydmpln
The Actors that play the Advocates Noir-It-All
Mrs. Moore’s death dean-bensics
Judy Davis is phenomenal... Phoenix1982
Discuss A Passage to India (1984) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?