7.3/10
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57 user 30 critic

Fire (1996)

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1:47 | Trailer

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Two women who are abandoned by their husbands, find love and solace in each other.

Director:

Deepa Mehta

Writer:

Deepa Mehta
7 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Karishma Jhalani Karishma Jhalani ... Young Radha
Ramanjeet Kaur Ramanjeet Kaur ... Young Radha's mother
Dilip Mehta Dilip Mehta ... Young Radha's father
Javed Jaffrey ... Jatin (as Jaaved Jaaferi)
Nandita Das ... Sita
Vinay Pathak ... Guide at Taj Mahal
Kushal Rekhi Kushal Rekhi ... Biji
Shabana Azmi ... Radha
Ranjit Chowdhry Ranjit Chowdhry ... Mundu
Kulbhushan Kharbanda ... Ashok
Alice Poon Alice Poon ... Julie
Ram Gopal Bajaj ... Swamiji
Ravinder Happy Ravinder Happy ... Oily man in video shop
Devyani Saltzman Devyani Saltzman ... Girl in video shop (as Devyani Mehta Saltzman)
Sunil Chhabra Sunil Chhabra ... Milkman on bicycle
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Storyline

Ashok runs a family business that sells takeout food that also has a video rental store at the side. Ashok's extended family includes his wife Radha, his brother Jatin, their ailing mother Biji and their manservant Mundu, all living under the same roof. Jatin, at the insistence of Ashok and their mother, Biji, agrees to marry the beautiful Sita in an arranged marriage, although he is actually in love with Julie, a Chinese-Indian. At first glance, you see a happy middle-class family going through the normal paces of everyday life. However, as the layers are slowly peeled back, we find a simmering cauldron of discontent within the family, with almost every family member living a lie. Both marriages in the family turn out to be emotionally empty, without love or passion. While Ashok is an ascetic who has taken a vow of celibacy, Jatin is a handsome ladies' man who is still openly seeing Julie even after his marriage to Sita. Ashok has pledged his total devotion to a religious holy man, a... Written by Hariharan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Together they shared a burning secret. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Canada | India

Language:

English | Hindi

Release Date:

22 August 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fire - Wenn die Liebe Feuer fängt See more »

Filming Locations:

New Delhi, Delhi, India See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$14,384, 24 August 1997, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$402,749, 12 October 1997
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Ultra Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On its opening day in India, some movie theaters were attacked by Hindu fundamentalists, and the movie was eventually banned for religious insensitivity. The film was banned in Pakistan for the lesbian relationship that the movie plays around. See more »

Quotes

Mundu: Shall we watch a video?
See more »

Connections

References The Joy Suck Club (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Allah Hukh
Performed by Miraj Ahmed Kharval
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A near perfect drama
2 December 1998 | by Phoenix-36See all my reviews

This intelligent, moving and beautiful film is a study in the ways people react to tradition (reminds me of William Faulkner's novels).

The characters all feel trapped by the weight of the roles they are expected to assume, and seek for a way to live within those roles rather than throw them off altogether. But as the story develops the two wives, trapped in loveless marriages, draw together. Drawing on the strength of their friendship and love, they give each other the courage to abandon their roles.

They have found that living within their traditions is no life at all, it is a sort of living death: without passion, without true connection to others, without fulfillment. Although they know there will be a price to be paid for their rebellion and freedom, it is a price much less dear than the sacrifice called for by a comfortable, predictable existence.

The screenplay is wonderful, the acting marvelous. Near perfect!


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