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Studying Indian Cinema$
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Omar Ahmed

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781906733681

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781906733681.001.0001

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Once Upon a Time in India

Once Upon a Time in India

Lagaan (Land Tax, 2001, Dir. Ashutosh Gowariker)

(p.217) Chapter Twelve: Once Upon a Time in India
Studying Indian Cinema

Omar Ahmed

Liverpool University Press

This chapter highlights Ashutosh Gowariker's Lagaan (Land Tax, 2001). An epic essay on cricket, the British Empire, and the collective will of a group of village farmers, the film joined the ranks of an elite group of Indian films to be nominated for an Academy Award. Lagaan quickly acquired the label of a contemporary classic and revived the career of film star Aamir Khan. The chapter offers a detailed and critically engaged study of the film. It covers areas such as the audience response to the film; representations of the British Raj; colonialism and imperialism; song and dance as narrative storytelling; the ideological value of religion; and the sports film as a vehicle for exploring national concerns.

Keywords:   Ashutosh Gowariker, Lagaan, Indian films, Academy Award, Aamir Khan, British Raj, colonialism, imperialism, religion, sports film

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