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Earth (1998)

Unrated | | Drama, Romance, War | 7 July 1999 (Belgium)
1:56 | Trailer
It's 1947 and the borderlines between India and Pakistan are being drawn. A young girl bears witnesses to tragedy as her ayah is caught between the love of two men and the rising tide of political and religious violence.



, (novel)
Top Rated Indian Movies #99 | 1 win. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dil Navaz
Hassan, the Masseur
Maia Sethna ...
Lenny Sethna
Babby Singh ...
Bunty Sethna
Hariya / Himmat Ali
Kabir Chowdhury ...
Cousin Adi
Rustom Sethna
Mr. Rogers (IG)
Mr. Singh
Lauren Walker ...
Mrs. Rogers
Cinia Jain ...
Mrs. Singh
Navtej Singh Johar ...
Sher Singh


The movie opens in Lahore of 1947 before India and Pakistan became independent. It is a cosmopolitan city, depicted by the coterie of working class friends who are from different religions. The rest of the movie chronicles the fate of this group and the maddening religious that sweeps even this city as the partition of the two countries is decided and Lahore is given to Pakistan. Written by Neel V Kumar <neelvk@iname.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

india | muslim | hindu | friend | sikh | See All (178) »


Drama | Romance | War


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






| | | |

Release Date:

7 July 1999 (Belgium)  »

Also Known As:

1947: Earth  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$42,449 (USA) (10 September 1999)


$528,972 (USA) (14 April 2000)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


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Did You Know?


Author Bapsi Sidhwa has a cameo at the end of the movie, as older Lenny. See more »


Follows Fire (1996) See more »


Dheemi Dheemi
Performed by Hariharan
Composed by A.R. Rahman
See more »

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User Reviews

Deeply disturbing
29 May 2000 | by (Melbourne, Australia) – See all my reviews

Deepa Mehta lets us in the opening scene the theme of her film as a small girl smashes a plate on the floor and asks her puzzled mother, "Can you break a country?" The film shows exactly how that happens. The first half of the film depicts an idyllic society. The scenes in the park are reminiscent of Eden, as the nurse Shanta holds court amongst her Hindu, Muslim and Sikh suitors. The kite-flying scene is probably the lightest-hearted in the picture. But gradually the cracks start to appear, driving apart friends and lovers. The hatred which spreads as partition of the country approaches is shown to be a madness coming from deep within the human heart, which twists and deforms relationships. The worst betrayal in this film results from an irreconcilable confusion of loyalties in a trusting heart. This film presents a disturbing but authentic picture of human nature.

The score by A.R. Rahman is a powerful blend of Indian and western film music, lightening the joyous moments (such as the kite-flying scene) and deepening the foreboding in other scenes (such as the train of death).

37 of 41 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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