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Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India (2001)

 -  Adventure | Drama | Musical  -  8 May 2002 (USA)
8.3
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 38,004 users   Metascore: 84/100
Reviews: 231 user | 70 critic | 21 from Metacritic.com

The people of a small village in Victorian India stake their future on a game of cricket against their ruthless British rulers...

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(story), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Top 250 #220 | Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 44 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Gracy Singh ...
...
...
Suhasini Mulay ...
Yashodamai
...
Rajah Puran Singh
Raghuvir Yadav ...
Bhura (as Raghuveer Yadav)
Rajendra Gupta ...
Mukhiya
Rajesh Vivek ...
Guran
Shri Vallabh Vyas ...
Ishwar (as Sri Vallabh Vyas)
Javed Khan ...
Ram Singh
...
Ismail (as Raj Zutshi)
Akhilendra Mishra ...
Arjan
Daya Shankar Pandey ...
Goli
Yashpal Sharma ...
Lakha
Edit

Storyline

This is the story about the resilience shown by the Indians when they were under the British Rule. They are already taxed to the bone by the British and their cronies, but when Jack Russell announces that he will double the Lagaan (tax) from all villagers, they decide to oppose it. Leading the villagers is a handsome young man named Bhuvan, who challenges them to a game of cricket, a game that is to be played by veteran British cricket players, versus villagers, including Bhuvan himself, who have never played this game before, and do not even know a bat from a piece of wood. As the challenge is accepted, the interest grows and attracts Indians from all over the region, as well as the British from all over the country - as everyone gathers to see the 'fair play' that the British will display against their counter-parts, who are aided by none other than the sister, Elizabeth, of Captain Rusell. Written by Sumitra (corrected by Sonia)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

british | villager | village | land tax | rain | See more »

Taglines:

Once upon a time in India


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

8 May 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lagaan  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Model turned actress Sonali Bendre was interested in playing "Gauri" but Aamir Khan rejected her, felt that she looked much like a Westerner. See more »

Goofs

The film although based in the year 1893 shows quite a few British Lieutenants to be clean-shaven. The British Indian Army regulated all commissioned officers to wear whiskers till 1910, so the lieutenants had to wear beards or at least moustaches. See more »

Quotes

Col. Boyer: At ease, Captain. You know Major Cotton. That is Major Warren. Take a seat. Now, what is this we hear? That you have agreed to cancel the tax of the farmers in Champaner if they beat you in a game of cricket? Is this true?
Capt. Russell: Yes, Colonel Boyer, sir, it is.
Col. Boyer: What on earth do you think you're here for? To play games?
Maj. Warren: Let me remind you that you are working here for Her Majesty, the Queen. Your job is to ensure the smooth running of your province.
Capt. Russell: Pardon me, sir, but that's exactly what I'm doing.
Maj. Cotton: I ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in 50 Films to See Before You Die (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

O Palanhaare
Music by A.R. Rahman
Lyrics by Javed Akhtar
Performed by Lata Mangeshkar, Udit Narayan and chorus
See more »

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User Reviews

 
As a sports movie, "Lagaan" is dramatized with great élan and suspense…

The setting is historical… The year is 1893… The British Raj imposes heavy taxes on the poor villagers despite all the problems droughts have caused on their income…

An arrogant army captain—unknown to him that his sister has fallen in love with a sensitive idealistic—confident in his countrymen's ability, offers the people relief if they can beat the fearsome British team at a game of cricket…

Despite its closeness to the conventions, "Lagaan" proved to be a break-out film… Besides the graceful and enchanting attractions of the song-and-dance sequences, it has a plot carefully fashioned to a special kind of audience—audience who likes sports movies…

They are minor characters compared to the captain's pretty sister (Rachel Shelley), who not only upholds the British tradition of fair play but also loses her heart to the handsome Indian hero…


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