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THE RISING – Ballad of Mangal Pandey
Cinedrome presents the epic of international quality with «Lagaan» star Aamir Khan in cinema. Enjoy the original international version English/Hindi with German subtitles on the big screen!

THE RISING - Ballad of Mangal Pandey had its world premier on August 3rd 2005 at the Locarno Film Festival, where it opened Europe's 4th biggest international film festival with an open air screening on the Piazza Grande with an audience of 7000 viewers and which was also attended by Aamir Khan and Rani Mukherjee. THE RISING had a fantastic opening in India, UK, USA and Australia and broke several box office records.

THE RISING is finally starting early November in the international version (English/Hindi dialogues) with German subtitles in Swiss cinemas and with single preview shows in some big German cities.

"Slightly less than a full-blown epic, the film is handsomely mounted."
  Screen International

"Director Ketan Mehta brings affectionate attention to period detail, and the reflections of current world events found in the self-inflicted collapse of this capitalist, colonial regime sharpen the story’s contemporary edge."  Empire

THE STORY. 1857 AD. The entire Indian sub continent is ruled by the British East India Company, the most successful business enterprise in history. A truly colonial enterprise, it follows its own commercial and administrative laws, arrogating the right to pillage and exploit the country's natural and human resources with total impunity. In order to control the population, it creates its own army, composed of native soldiers, Hindus and Muslims, who are called "sepoys". The Company controls the destiny of one fifth of humanity.

During a fierce battle in one of the Afghan wars that the Company fought in the mid-century, Mangal Pandey (Aamir Khan), the heroic sepoy, saves the life of his British commanding officer William Gordon (Toby Stephens). Gordon is indebted to Mangal and a strong friendship develops between them, transcending consideration of rank and race.

The friendship is soon challenged by the introduction of a new rifle called the Enfield. The new rifle has come with a new cartridge which is rumoured to be coated with the grease of cow and pig fat. The new cartridge has to be bitten before it is loaded, which ignites anger and resentment among the Indian sepoys. The cow is sacred to the Hindus, the pig forbidden to the Muslims. They will not touch such a kartoos (gun cartridge), it would defile them.

Mangal Pandey becomes the leader of the rebellion, although he has to sacrifice his relationship to the beautiful courtesan Heera (Rani Mukherjee) and his friendship with Captain William Gordon.

FILM INFORMATION. Set in one of the most beautiful countries on earth, told across the divides of time, THE RISING tells the tale of friends, lovers and enemies, exploiters and exploited, and the growth and awareness of a man and a nation. It is a story of one man and his dream of freedom. This sweeping epic is based on real historical events, seen as a trigger for Indian independence.

THE RISING – Ballad of Mangal Pandey is an epic tale of friendship, betrayal, love and sacrifice set against the backdrop of what the British called the sepoy mutiny but which for the Indians was the First War of Independence. "Company Raj" as it was known, had been plundering the country, treating the locals unjustly and causing widespread resentment. After a hundred years of subjugation, the Indian consciousness is rising through the revolutionary prospect of change and self-rule.

Besides the thrilling and moving story, THE RISING draws a breathtaking, beautiful picture of "classic India": Colorful, with impressing costumes and scenography of Indian palaces and cities of the mid-19th century. The great soundtrack, influenced by classical Indian music, was created by the famous composer A.R. Rahman, who also is accountable for the stirring LAGAAN soundtrack.

Director Ketan Mehta, who has been particularly known for rich in content art-house movies until now, included many other aspects into THE RISING apart from the main story line. Besides illustrating the cultural clash between Indians and the colonialists, he undemonstratively weaves subjects into the story like the opium crop growing and trade practiced by the East India Company with the goal to also colonize China, utilizing of the Indian mercenaries to suppress their own people and to fight other colonial wars, trafficking of women, profiting from prostitution, corruption and the arbitrariness of the occupying forces. All those aspects can be seen as an universal picture of suppression and exploitation of a nation through a military-political strategy of a great power. Accordingly the politically active actor Aamir Khan compared the story of THE RISING with nowadays behavior of the current great power USA at the press conference for the movie at the Locarno Film Festival.

AAMIR KHAN. Being one of the most famous Indian actors, Aamir Khan is known for choosing his roles very carefully. He often acted in rather sophisticated films, either art-house movies like Deepa Metha's (WATER) drama EARTH about the partition of India and Pakistan or in great Bollywood productions. 2002 he became famous internationally with the Oscar nominated epic LAGAAN: Once Upon A Time In India, which was the first German subtitled and till today most successful Bollywood film in Swiss cinemas. After that he acted in Farhan Akhtars (LAKSHYA) sensational, innovative movie DIL CHAHTA HAI, which today has cult film status also within western Bollywood fans. 2006 Aamir Khan convinced again in a very strong role, in the groundbreaking political youth drama RANG DE BASANTI.

The Rising – Ballad of Mangal Pandey
India 2005
Language: English and Hindi (international version) with German subtitles
Running Time: 150 min.
Print: 35mm Scope, SRD
Directed by: Ketan Mehta
Produced by: Bobby Bedi
Script: Farrukh Dhondy
Music: A.R. Rahman (Lagaan)
Camera: Vijay Arora
Cast: Aamir Khan (Lagaan, Dil Chahta Hai, 1947 Earth),
Rani Mukherjee (Paheli, Black, Yuva, Saathiya),
Amisha Patel, Toby Stephens (James Bond: Die Another Day),
Kiron Kher (Main Hoon Na, Veer-Zaara, Khamosh Pani, Devdas)


Theatrical Trailer, 0:32, 4.7 MB
MANGAL MANGAL Song Promo, 1:04, 10.7 MB
VARI VARI Song Promo, 1:06, 18.9 MB
RASIYA Song Promo, 1:12, 14.1 MB

Quicktime MPEG4 H.264 files, resolution 640x272 pixel (original cinema format scope 2.35:1), subtitled in German


THE RISING – Ballad of Mangal Pandey was running in cinemas in Zurich, Basel and St. Gallen from November 2nd till December 29th 2006. Screened was the international version (mainly English, not almost completely dubbed and narrated in Hindi like the Indian version) with German subtitles, uncut and in perfect quality from a 35mm theatrical film print.

Now the movie is available (in this better international version) with German subtitles together with a German dubbed version on original DVD.



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Official THE RISING website with music clips and trailers (English, Flash)
Internet Movie Database THE RISING page
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