A Hindu man and a Muslim woman fall in love in a small village and move to Mumbai, where they have two children. However, growing religious tensions and erupting riots threaten to tear the family apart.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Shekhar Mishra Narayan
...
Shaila Bano
...
Shakti Samaj Leader
Akash Khurana
...
Shekhar's father (as Nazar)
Kitty
Master Harsha
Master Hriday
Nagendra Prasad ...
(as S. Nagendra Prasad)
Ratnakar
M.V. Vasudeva Rao ...
(as Vasudeva Rao)
Rallapalli ...
(as Raallapalli)
Deesh Mariwala

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Storyline

Based on true incidents, a south Indian Hindu man falls in love with a Muslim woman--taboo in the small village from which they hail. They marry against family wishes and move to Mumbai, where he works as a reporter for a large daily newspaper. Eventually, the couple has twin boys. The rest of the film is set during the December 1992-January 1993 period when the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid controversy raised religious tension in Mumbai and other parts of India, which sparked rioting and violence. The couple is separated from their children, and the fathers of both parents are killed when their home is burned by rioters. A reporter is shown interviewing politicians from both factions as well as the police. An underlying moral of thinking of oneself as an Indian rather than a Hindu or a Muslim is prevalent throughout the latter part of the film. The family is finally reunited after much searching through hospitals, morgues, and shelters. But the violence has left indelible impressions ... Written by Munesh Makhija <mmakhija@trc.tellabs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

hindu | children | muslim | love | twin | See All (41) »

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

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Details

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Release Date:

10 March 1995 (India)  »

Also Known As:

Bombaim  »

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2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Bollywood Brass Band has done a instrumental version of the song "Kehna Hi Kya" ( What Is There To Say). See more »

Goofs

The latter part of the film takes place during 1992, but in a scene set a few years earlier, Shekhar is wearing a Colorado Rockies shirt. The Rockies were established in 1993. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ye Maaya Chesave (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Idhu Annai Bhoomi
(Hindi: "Apna Zameen Yeh")
Sung by Srinivas, Noell, Sujatha, Sivanesan, Ganga Sreenivasan, Renuka and Anuradha Sriram
Composed by A.R. Rahman
Tamil lyrics by Vairamuthu
Hindi lyrics by Mehboob
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User Reviews

 
Powerful
20 July 2004 | by (Belgium) – See all my reviews

In 1992, Hindu-extremists demolished a 16th century mosque in Ayodhya, the alleged birthplace of Hindu deity Rama. This sparked ethnic violence across the country, which in Bombay alone left over 1700 people dead. To turn these events into a musical might not be everyone's idea of responsible entertainment, but director Mani Ratnam makes it happen.

The story starts out in a small South Indian village, where the young Hindu journalism student Shekar (Arvind Swami) and beautiful Muslim girl Bano (Manisha Koirala) fall head over heals in love, much to the chagrin of their respective parents. They elope to Bombay, where they get married and Shekar becomes a reporter. They have twins, which they name Kamal and Kabir, a Muslim and a Hindu name to represent their mixed heritage. They grow up and eventually their grandparents come to terms with the marriage. All seems well.

This first part is filmed in the best of Bollywood tradition with its heightened emotions, glorious song-and-dance sequences and a strong underlying eroticism. Even if you've never seen a Bollywood-movie, you know you're in familiar territory and as a viewer you're lulled in a false sense of security. And then the riots start... In brilliantly edited sequences Mani Ratnam throws all the terror and chaos of erupting religious madness in your face and what began as innocent romantic fluff becomes a gut wrenching, almost unwatchable experience as the two parents must look for their children who became lost in the confusion. A search that leads them from streets of violence to morgues overflowing with dead bodies.

Bombay is a great movie, effectively using the idiom of Hindi popular cinema to tackle a serious subject.

***1/2


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