1996 / 104 min. /
Director: Deepa Mehta
Cast: Shabana Azmi, Nandita Das

Sanghum: FIRE

Co-presented with Reel Asian Film Festival and co-sponsored by Inside Out & Pleasure Dome,
Sanghum Film Series presents: FIRE

Written and directed by Deepa Mehta, FIRE was released in India two years after its premiere at TIFF in 1998. The first film in mainstream Bollywood to explicitly show a lesbian love relationship, it triggered massive protests and violent riots by far-right Hindu nationalists who claimed the film was, “immoral and pornographic” and feared it would “spoil Indian women.”

Defending her film, Deepa Mehta declared, “FIRE is a film about loneliness. It is a film about the hypocrisy of our society today. It is a film about how women don’t have choices in a patriarchal set-up.”

Shabana Azmi, one of India’s most versatile actresses and a young Nandita Das in her first feature role, play Radha and Sita, two sister-in-laws who fall in love while living together in a joint household. Mehta provides a provocative alternative to the traditional Hindu understanding of the Radha-Sita narrative, unravelling the ingrained patriarchy that has perpetuated unrealistic portrayals of female duty and desire.

Fire is a story of love and about the freedom to choose, come join us for the second feature in our six part series focusing on portrayals of women in Hindi Cinema!

Upcoming Screenings:


None Currently Scheduled