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Umrao Jaan (2006)

J.P. Dutta's adaption of the Urdu novel "Umrao Jan Ada" by Mirza Haadi Ruswa (1905).

Director:

J.P. Dutta

Writers:

J.P. Dutta (screenplay), O.P. Dutta (story) | 1 more credit »
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan ... Ameeran / Umrao Jaan (as Aishwariya Rai)
Shabana Azmi ... Khanum Jaan
Sunil Shetty ... Faiz Ali (as Suneil Shetty)
Abhishek Bachchan ... Nawab Sultan
Bikram Saluja Bikram Saluja ... Ashraf
Ayesha Jhulka ... Khurshid Jaan
Puru Rajkumar ... Gauhar Mirza (as Puru Raj Kumar)
Parikshit Sahni ... Ameeran's father
Kulbhushan Kharbanda ... Maulvi
Divya Dutta ... Bismillah Jaan
Himani Shivpuri ... Bua Hussaini
Maya Alagh ... Ameeran's mother
Vishwajeet Pradhan ... Dilawar Khan (as Viswajeet Pradhan)
Javed Khan ... Pir Baksh
Anwar Madeem Anwar Madeem ... Mirza Hadi Ruswa
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Storyline

Ameeran lives a poor-lifestyle with her mom, dad, and brother, Jamal, in Faizabad, British India. When her dad testifies against the local corrupt cop, Dilawar Khan, Khan swears to avenge this humiliation, and several years later, abducts Ameeran, holds her for ransom. When no money is forthcoming, he sells her. Ameeran ends up in a brothel run by Lucknow's Madame Khanum Jaan, where she is taught dance and poetry, and is subsequently re-named Umrao Jaan. Years later, Umrao has matured, is a well-known Courtesan with many patrons, chief amongst them are Nawab Sujat Ali Khan and his son, Sultan. Umrao and Sultan fall in love with each other, much to the chagrin of Sujat, who instructs Sultan either to give up Umrao or to lose his inheritance, and Sultan chooses Umrao. He gives up his father's palatial house and goes to live in the brothel, but re-locates to live with his uncle in Gadi after being taunted by Khanum Jaan. Umrao has a new admirer, Nawab Faiz Ali, who proposes to take her ... Written by rAjOo (gunwanti@hotmail.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the last film featuring Suniel Shetty and Abhishek Bachchan together See more »

Goofs

The movie is set in the period of the late 19th century but the hand pump shown is of India Mark II which came into existence much later. See more »

Connections

Version of Umrao Jaan (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Salaam
Written by Javed Akhtar
Music by Anu Malik
Performed by Alka Yagnik
Courtesy of T-series
See more »

User Reviews

 
Below average
26 November 2006 | by ahmadaYAZ100See all my reviews

I saw both old (1981) and new Umrao Jaan (2006). The old Umrao, I think, is one of the best movies (Indian or otherwise), at par with any famed-Satyajit Ray. It should NOT be even compared with the new Umrao Jaan. The problem is that it is so good that Muzaffar Ali (the producer of old Umrao from Lucknow where most of the movie unfolds) perhaps cannot make a better movie all his life.

The old Umrao is very restrained, and therefore, a believable story of a Lucknow tawa-if (courtesan, geisha). There are no brave heroes (all flee 1857 Sepoy Mutiny against the English), the robber Faiz Ali dies in an unheroic escape. Owner of house of tawaifs, Madam Khanum, is selfish and exploitative. Nawab Sultan, one of the first clients of Umrao, sees Umarao what she is - a tawaif and abandons her with no compunctions to marry into the wealthy family of her cousin; others hurl insults at Umrao. There is a thin line (if any) between a tawaif and a prostitute/hooker - old Umrao sleeps with Nawab Sultan as a matter of routine, and then with the robber Faiz Ali.

In old Umrao Urdu poetry (ghazal) is shown to be pervasive in the lives of tawaifs and all around her. The dialogs are in lyrical, delicate and local Urdu, difficult to be appreciated in translation. In old Umrao, acting is superb by all. Songs and Indian Kathak dances (minus one by Nawab Sultan) are mostly in context.

Good movies like good books can enrich and teach. Most Indian movies are trash, fantastic escape from reality but not old Umrao Jaan. You could see Lucknow of a bygone era. Sample these:

  • pigeon flight contests (or kabootar baazi, a flock breaking pigeons mid flight from a rival flock) - Indian hop scotch (ikkal dukkal) - the earthen stove (or choolha) - the custom of eating with hands in the kitchen on the floor near choolha - the custom of offering for a saint's shrine (nazar at durgaah) - the custom of arranged marriage between Muslim cousins - the custom of purdah, - the custom of eating betel leaf (or paans) and hookah smoking - the tradition of sellers of bangles and shawls coming home - the incompetent contemptible and indolent nawabs who would sell part of the estate for a courtesan


See old Umrao if you have not yet; see it again if you have once. Technically, the photography in old Umrao is not as high quality as in the new one but then in 25 years cameras have improved a lot.

Old Umrao gets 9/10; the new 3/10.


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Details

Country:

India

Language:

Urdu | Hindi

Release Date:

3 November 2006 (India) See more »

Also Known As:

Umrao Jaan: Losy pieknej kurtyzany See more »

Filming Locations:

Jaipur, Rajasthan, India See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$485,000, 5 November 2006

Gross USA:

$485,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,371,723
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(European Film Market)

Color:

Color
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