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'A Passage to India' Movie Analysis

Paper type: Analysis
Pages: 4 (779 words)
Categories: India, Movie
Downloads: 29
Views: 9

“East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet.” The heart of the movie ‘A Passage to India’ rests upon this extract of poem by Rudyard Kipling and this remains the major theme explored by David Lean. The movie commences and ends by raising and imposing various questions such as the Anglo-Indian environment during the British India, friendship between the Englishmen and the Indians, the role of gender and race is observed here. There is a massive idea of cultural clash, which takes place between the east and the west, and has been put into the limelight.

The British staying in Chandrapore with their family had an altogether different environment for themselves. They had their own sources of entertainments such as English Clubs where Indians were not allowed to enter. They attempted on creating a mini Britain away from it where all sort of British entertainments were found such as English shows, ball dance parties etc. that took place in the club.

Their social life revolves around Anglo-Indians only and they are least bothered about the Indians. Lean shows that while they aspire to create healthy relations with the brown man they also lacked and failed to understand what India essentially is and whom the Indians are. Coming to Godbole aka Alec Guinness, according to him he performed a sickeningly awful role but I found him to be decent. It can be said that the role he was allotted was a little pitiful as he was presented as an orthodox and a typical Indian Brahmin. A Britisher being given an Indian character the role may not have came from within but despite the fact he managed to come out quite well.

Friendship sees no race, culture, color & religion and is pure. Throughout the movie Lean has tried on proving this point by showing the pure form of friendship of Dr. Aziz with Mrs. Moore and Mr. Fielding. The two ladies Ms. Adela Quested and Mrs. Moore were completely unaware about the chasm of East and West and so when they first visited India they treated Indians precisely Dr. Aziz with kind heart and humanity unlike the other Englishmen’s treating the Indians. Even Dr. Aziz found Mrs. Moore to be one of the most kind-faced English women he ever came across. E.M. Fosters in his book described it, as “They had no consciousness of race, Mrs. Moore being too old and Ms. Quested being too new for this.” Moreover when Dr. Aziz, Hamidullah and Mahamoud Ali were engaged in the conversation on whether or not the Englishmen and the Indians ever be friend? Hamidullah told with a spark in his eyes that was friends with one British family previously, which he still cherishes. In the beginning Aziz was seen contemptuous of the Britishers but eventually when he met Mrs. Moore and Mr. Fielding things changed. These situations tell us there is not impossibility that Englishmen and Indian cannot be friends and not all Englishmen are cruel some have a kind hearted as well.

Mrs. Moore and Ms. Quested were quite disappointed to see the same culture prevailing here as in England and had a longing want to see the “real India” and so Dr. Aziz and Mr. Fielding planned to take them to the great Marabar Caves. They had a train to Marabar before the dawn. Everyone apart from Mr. Fielding and Godbole arrived at the station on time. Dr. Aziz was confident enough as he knew Englishmen never misses a train but contrastingly they missed their train. Dr. Aziz became the sole person guiding them Marabar. The next day when they reached the cave and went inside Mrs. Moore feeling suffocated inside the dark echoing cave came out and asked Dr. Aziz & Ms. Quested to move on and enjoy themselves. Soon when they climbed up Ms. Quested started to feel claustrophobic and the movie is silent onto the scenes here, she goes down and went back to the town with Mr. Collector and accused Dr. Aziz with the heinous charge of rape. The question of rape is therefore entirely ambiguous. Here comes the role of gender and race to play, Ms. Quested being an “English Lady” the accused was immediately arrested without having found solid evidences. Justice in India during the British Raj was pretty difficult and quite biased. In the prevalent British India where Indians already suffered justice was never served and they were always looked down upon. Eventually in the end it is clear by Ms. Quested’s withdrawal that it was a mere hallucination, which she suffered in the cave due to claustrophobe and Dr. Aziz, is not guilty of rape.

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‘A Passage to India’ Movie Analysis. (2019, Dec 01). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/a-passage-to-india-movie-analysis-essay

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