IMDb > The Deceivers (1988)
The Deceivers
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The Deceivers (1988) More at IMDbPro »

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John Masters (novel)
Michael Hirst (screenplay)
View company contact information for The Deceivers on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
2 September 1988 (USA) See more »
Fact-based account of a secret society of murderers, and of the man who exposed them in British India 1825. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Merchant Ivory Does Historical Thriller That Doesn't Really Work See more (10 total) »


  (in credits order)

Pierce Brosnan ... William Savage
Shashi Kapoor ... Raja Chandra Singh

Saeed Jaffrey ... Hussein
Helena Michell ... Sarah Wilson
Keith Michell ... Colonel Wilson

David Robb ... George Anglesmith
Tariq Yunus ... Feringea
Jalal Agha ... The Nawab
Gary Cady ... Lt. Maunsell
Salim Ghouse ... Piroo
Neena Gupta ... Gopal's Wife
Nayeem Hafizka ... Sepoy

Bijaya Jena ... Harlot (as Bijoya Jena)
H.N. Kalla ... The Nawab Servant
Kammo ... Official
Goga Kapoor ... Shor Dil
Manmohan Krishna ... Old Rajput
Harish Magon ... Sepoy
Giles Masters ... Captain Devril
Ramesh Ranga ... Rajput's Son
Dileep Singh Rathore ... Sowar (as Dilip Singh Rathore)
Hilla Sethna ... Chandra Singh's Maidservant
R.P. Sondhi ... Prisoner
Kanwaljit Singh ... Gopal
Shanmukha Srinivas ... Hira Lal
Dalip Tahil ... Daffadar Ganesha

Tim Van Rellim ... Reverent Matthias
Rajesh Vivek ... Priest
Amin ... Thugs
Akbar Bakshi ... Thugs
Ramesh Goyal ... Thugs
Shyam Kaushal ... Thugs (as Kaushal)
Haroon Khan ... Thugs
Nileish Malhotra ... Thugs
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Manmauji ... Ferryman

Directed by
Nicholas Meyer 
Writing credits
John Masters (novel)

Michael Hirst (screenplay)

Produced by
Leon Falk .... associate producer
Ismail Merchant .... producer
Tim Van Rellim .... co-producer
Michael White .... executive producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
John Scott 
Cinematography by
Walter Lassally 
Film Editing by
Richard Trevor 
Production Design by
Ken Adam 
Art Direction by
Franco Fumagalli  (as Gianfranco Fumagalli)
Ram Yedekar 
Costume Design by
Jenny Beavan 
John Bright 
Makeup Department
Colin Arthur .... makeup assistant
Gordon Kay .... makeup artist
Vera Mitchell .... chief hair stylist
Mariam Samuel .... hairdresser assistant
Mustaque Sheikh .... makeup assistant
Mussa Sohlaee .... hairdresser assistant
Lisa Tomblin .... hair stylist
Production Management
Deepak Nayar .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Chris Carreras .... first assistant director
Marcia Gay .... second assistant director
Nayeem Hafizka .... third assistant director
Shah Jehan .... first assistant director
Rakesh Mehra .... second assistant director
Alex Rooks .... crowd co-ordinator
M.R. Shahjahan .... first assistant director
Art Department
Letitzia Adam .... set dresser
Sunil Chhabra .... property master
Kishor Dang .... assistant property master
Agnes Fernandes .... properties buyer
Agnes Goveas .... prop buyer
Agnes Goveas .... set dresser
Giles Masters .... assistant art director
Pradip Redij .... construction manager
Harveer Singh .... props
Raffaele Vincenti .... property master
Sound Department
Graham V. Hartstone .... sound re-recording mixer
Claude Hitchcock .... sound recordist
Nicolas Le Messurier .... sound re-recording mixer
Dileep Subramanian .... sound assistant (as Dilip Subramanium)
Robert Taylor .... sound engineer
Special Effects by
Dave Eltham .... special effects technician
Brian Smithies .... special effects
Visual Effects by
Alan Church .... optical camera operator (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Mukul Abhyankar .... still photographer
Mikki Ansin .... still photographer
Jim Boorer .... camera grip
Denise Brassard .... clapper loader
Arish Fyzee .... clapper loader
Tony Garrett .... focus puller
Rajesh Joshi .... camera operator: second unit
Gyanchand Rikki .... camera grip
Tony Woodcock .... camera operator
Casting Department
Jennifer Jaffrey .... casting: India
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Lovleen Bains .... costume coordinator (as Loveleen Baines)
Steve Hubbard .... wardrobe supervisor
William Pierce .... costumes: uniforms
Editorial Department
Dave Pultz .... color timer (uncredited)
Other crew
Paul Bradley .... liaison: London
Sue Field .... script supervisor
Denny Martin Flinn .... choreographer
Dominic Fysh .... assistant to director
Pauline Hume .... graphic artist: titles
Alex Matcham .... production accountant
Vans Pradeep Singh Rathore .... location assistant
Dileep Singh Rathore .... production coordinator
Luca Ward .... voice dubbing: Pierce Brosnan
Natasha Wellesley .... production assistant

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
102 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.75 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

One of nine productions that Indian actor Shashi Kapoor made with Merchant Ivory Productions. The films include Bombay Talkie (1970), Side Streets (1998), In Custody (1994), The Deceivers (1988), Heat and Dust (1983), The Householder (1963), Shakespeare-Wallah (1965), In Ismail's Custody (1994) (V), The Wandering Company (1984) (TV).See more »
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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
Merchant Ivory Does Historical Thriller That Doesn't Really Work, 10 July 2013
Author: Theo Robertson from Isle Of Bute, Scotland

I'm sure every schoolboy knows where the word " Thug " originates from . If not I'll reeducate you by saying the word is derived from the word " thugee " which apart from being the Hindi word for " thief " is also the name of a notorious cult from India where a group of men would befriend travelers along the Indian sub-continent and then strangle them . THE DECIEVERS based upon the John Masters book tells of the story of a British army officer who infiltrated the group

It doesn't seem to be able to tell the story well and one can't help thinking that being a Merchant Ivory production this might be to blame . It's rather stodgy and director Nicholas Meyer seems to be more interested in exotic beauty and cultural diversity of 1820s India than he is in telling a tension filled cinematic thriller . Ironically enough when it does try to mirror the classic era of Hollywood in the 1930s and 40s it comes across as being clichéd

A great pity because there's so much potential here that the production gets right such as pointing out that in the 1820s it was the British East India company and not the British monarch or the British government who ruled India . If you're worried about corporate capitalism in the 21st Century I can guarantee you it was much worse two hundred years ago . As you'd expect with this production company the costume design is exemplary . It's also a film that makes good use of sound editing where when the Thugees commit their murders a spine chilling " SWISH " type sound blasts out from the screen and is so effective it left me truly puzzled why Meyer didn't more to make THE DECEIVERS a more enthralling film

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