Circa 1920, during the Indian British rule, Dr. Aziz H. Ahmed was born and brought up in India. He is proficient in English, and wears Western style clothing. He meets an old lady, Mrs. Moore, at a mosque, who asks him to accompany her and her companion, Adela Quested, for sight-seeing around some caves.
Thereafter the organized life of Aziz is turned upside down when Adela accuses him of molesting her in a cave. Aziz is arrested and brought before the courts, where he learns that the entire British administration is against him, and would like to see him found guilty and punished severely, to teach all native Indians what it means to molest a British citizen. Aziz is all set to witness the “fairness” of the British system, whose unofficial motto is “guilty until proved innocent.”
A Passage to India is a 1984 epic historical drama film written and directed by David Lean. The screenplay is based on the play of the same name by Santha Rama Rau, which was based on the novel of the same name by E.M. Forster. This was the final film of Lean’s career, and the first feature-film he had directed in fourteen years, since Ryan’s Daughter in 1970.
Receiving universal critical acclaim upon its release with many praising it as Lean’s finest since Lawrence of Arabia, A Passage to India received eleven nominations at the Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director for Lean, and Best Actress for Judy Davis for her portrayal as Adela Quested. Peggy Ashcroft won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal as Mrs Moore, making her, at 77, the oldest actress to win the award, and Maurice Jarre won his third Academy Award for Best Original Score.
A Passage to India Movie Poster (1984)
A Passage to India (1984)
Directed by: David Lean
Starring: Judy Davis, Victor Banerjee, Peggy Ashcroft, James Fox, Alec Guinness, Richard Wilson, Antonia Pemberton, Art Malik
Screenplay by: E.M. Forster
Production Design by: John Box, Herbert Westbrook
Cinematography by: Ernest Day
Film Editing by: David Lean
Costume Design by: Judy Moorcroft
Set Decoration by: Hugh Scaife
Art Direction by: Cliff Robinson, Leslie Tomkins, Herbert Westbrook, Ram Yedekar
Distributed by: Columbia Pictures
Release Date: December 14, 1984