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Bend It Like Beckham (2002)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 1 August 2003 (USA)
Trailer
0:39 | Trailer
The daughter of orthodox Sikh rebels against her parents' traditionalism and joins a football team.

Director:

Gurinder Chadha
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Popularity
3,392 ( 447)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 17 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Parminder Nagra ... Jess
Keira Knightley ... Jules
Jonathan Rhys Meyers ... Joe
Anupam Kher ... Mr. Bhamra
Archie Panjabi ... Pinky Bhamra
Shaznay Lewis ... Mel
Frank Harper ... Alan Paxton
Juliet Stevenson ... Paula Paxton
Shaheen Khan Shaheen Khan ... Mrs. Bhamra
Ameet Chana ... Tony
Pooja Shah ... Meena (as Poojah Shah)
Pavenpreet Kaur Pavenpreet Kaur ... Bubbly (as Paven Virk)
Preeya Kalidas ... Monica
Trey Farley ... Taz
Saraj Chaudhry Saraj Chaudhry ... Sonny (as Saraj Chaudry)
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This is the story of David Beckham - athlete, celebrity, model, and global icon of style. 2013 marks the beginning of the end of David Beckham's football career, but now, Brand Beckham is ... See full summary »

Director: Justin M. Lesniewski
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Storyline

A comedy about bending the rules to reach your goal, Bend It Like Beckham explores the world of women's football, from kick-abouts in the park to freekicks in the Final. Set in Hounslow, West London and Hamburg, the film follows two 18 year olds with their hearts set on a future in professional soccer. Heart-stopping talent doesn't seem to be enough when your parents want you to hang up your football boots, find a nice boyfriend and learn to cook the perfect chapatti. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Sometimes, to follow your dreams... you've got to bend the rules! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language and sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although football star David Beckham and the term "bend" are well known in the U.K., they were virtually unknown in the U.S. As such, when the time came for the film's U.S. release, 20th Century Fox marketing executives suggested changing the title to "Move it like Mia," alluding to U.S. football (soccer) star Mia Hamm. Director Gurinder Chadha objected to the name change, and the film was released with its original title. See more »

Goofs

When Jess takes the free kick at the end of the match the goalkeeper positions the wall then stands on the wrong side of the goal behind the wall making it easier for Jess to score. See more »

Quotes

[explaining to Joe how she got the large burn scar on her thigh that makes her shy of wearing shorts]
Jess: I was eight. My mum was working overtime at Heathrow. And I was trying to cook beans on toast. And I jumped up to the grill to get the toast. And my trousers caught light so my sister put me in the bath, poured cold water over me and pulled them off. And half my skin came off too.
Joe: Sorry.
Jess: I know - it put me off beans on toast for life.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Additional thanks to ... Nikki & Gary at Action Vehicles See more »

Alternate Versions

The word football was been replaced by soccer in many US prints. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Good Morning Britain: Episode dated 1 August 2019 (2019) See more »

Soundtracks

IOU
(2001)
Written by Chris Braide, Victoria Beckham and Andrew Frampton
Published by EMI Music Publishing Ltd./© Warner/Chappell Music Ltd
By kind permission of Warner/Chappell Music Ltd.
Performed by Victoria Beckham
Licensed courtesy of Virgin Records Ltd.
See more »

User Reviews

A Crowd-pleasing Charmer
18 October 2003 | by Buddy-51See all my reviews

`Bend It Like Beckam' is a heartwarming charmer about a young girl's search for identity in 21st Century England. Like `Fiddler on the Roof,' `Beckam' deals with the painful struggles tradition-bound cultures must go through as they enter a looser, more freedom-loving modern world. The culture in this case is that of immigrant and first-generation Indians living in Great Britain. As with all such tales, it is the young folk who feel the need to pull away from the stuffy values of the past, and who end up dragging the reluctant older folk kicking and screaming into the future right along with them.

Jess Bharma is a fairly typical teen with dreams of becoming a world-class soccer player. However, Jess also comes from a very traditional Indian family that believes a girl should not play around with boys, show her legs in public, or aspire to much beyond marrying a good Indian boy and raising a family. We've seen this kind of set-up countless times before and `Bend It Like Beckam' will certainly not win any prizes for creativity or originality. It does, however, have a youthful exuberance and a generous spirit that can't help but captivate even the most diehard, coldhearted cynic. Parminder K. Nagra is utterly winning as young Jess, capturing all the innate optimism and unquenchable enthusiasm of this irrepressible character. She receives superb support from a cast of outstanding actors, both young and old, including Keira Knightley as Jules, her inspirational buddy who provides Jess with the opportunity to bring her dreams to fruition; Jonathan Rhys-Meyers as Joe, the handsome young coach who provides lessons in love along with lessons in soccer; Anupam Kher as Jess' father, who turns out to have some of his own personal demons to deal with; Shaheen Khan as Jess' mother, who doesn't understand why her daughter can't be content with the pre-ordained life her parents have laid out for her; and Juliet Stevenson as Jules' mother, who proves that Indians don't hold a patent on tradition-obsessed parents. In its quiet, gentle way, the film also confronts the issue of racism, particularly in terms of how the Indians are often still treated as second-class citizens in British society.

As directed by Gurinder Chadha, `Bend It Like Beckham' is a light-on-its-feet `feel-good' film that never takes itself too seriously. The movie suffers a bit from a sitcom mentality, as when, for instance, Jules' parents labor under the illusion that their daughter and Jess are actually lesbian lovers. The plotting, in addition to being predictable at times, often seems contrived and excessively melodramatic (the rivalry between Jess and Jules over Joe being the primary offender). But this isn't enough to do any serious damage to the film as a whole.

Thus, if you're looking for a film that is easygoing, uplifting and comfortably old-fashioned in its demeanor and theme, `Bend It Like Beckham' is for you.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK | Germany | USA

Language:

English | Punjabi | Hindi | German

Release Date:

1 August 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bend It Like Beckham See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP3,500,159 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$161,528, 16 March 2003

Gross USA:

$32,543,449

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$76,585,828
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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