Bandit Queen (1995)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Bandit Queen, based on the true story of legendary female warrior Phoolan Devi, is a confrontational epic that paints a far different picture of India from other arthouse productions. Devi (Seema Biswas) is married at age 11, abandoned by her husband when she resists his advances, and turned into a social outcast who, at one point, is gang-raped by the upper-caste men of one village. She later gets her revenge by organizing a massacre that leaves 20 villagers dead. Devi ultimately leads a band … More

Rating: R
Genre: Documentary, Drama, Art House & International
Directed By:
Written By: Mala Sen
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 7, 2004
Hallmark Entertainment



as Phoolan Devi

as Vikram Mallah

as Man Singh

as Mustaquim

as Kailash

as Poolan/Man Singh Gan...

as Mad Woman

as Babu Gujjar

as Vikram Gang Member

as Vikram Gang Member

as Vikram Gang Member

as Vikram Gang Member

as Vikram Gang Member

as Vikram Gang Member

as Vikram Gang Member

as Vikram Gang Member

as Ganshyam

as Behmai Man

as Behmai Man

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Phoolan/Man Singh Ga...

as Ashokchand Servant

as S.P. Bhind

as Miandad

as Commander Yadav

as Ashokchand

as Ala Singer

as Tarika's Partner

as Munni

as Phool Singh

as Tarika

as Policeman

as Ashokchand's Friend

as Rukhmani (age 11)

as A.D.C.

as Chief Minister

as Mother-in-law

as Kailash's Wife

as Little Girl

as Devendra Singh

as Shiv Narain

as Thakur Gang

as Messenger

as Rattan Chand

as Little Phoolan

as Rukhmani

as Ashokchand's Friend
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Bandit Queen

All Critics (29) | Top Critics (14)

This is an eye-filling and often stirring movie.

Full Review… | March 18, 2010
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

The numerous, unflinchingly filmed scenes of public and gang rape make this a visceral, if gruelling, experience, especially when juxtaposed with sprawling, beautifully photographed vistas of the Indian deserts and mountain ranges.

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

An astonishing, overpowering piece of rabble-rousing, consciousness-raising, epic-scale filmmaking.

Full Review… | February 13, 2001
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

An exciting movie that brings Devi's story to life with passion but without passing judgment.

January 1, 2000
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

Devi is played by Seema Biswas as a fireball of unrelenting, white-hot fury -- a slap in the face to her country and its barbaric, outdated treatment of women.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Seema Biswas is convincing in the role: small, fierce, dark-eyed and indomitable.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Bandit Queen


Violent, disturbing and true. A hardcore docu-drama that doesn't pull any punches.

Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer


Based on fact, this is the story of a woman who was raped, beaten, and imprisoned just for being a woman. After she escaped imprisonment, she became the leader of a bandit outfit and terrorized the people who had been so cruel to her.

Aunti Krist

Not totally accurate, in fact Pulan Devi sued the producers for not making it really like her, but it's all the same a very good film, do see it! She was herself a remarkable woman. I was saddened to hear of her tragic death at too young an age. My kids are part Indian, and the year the Bandit Queen was arrested, ALL the little Indian girls had to dress as the Bandit Queen. My girl included, and I did her up the BEST Bandit Queen costume, a pink square dance skirt, a pink blouse pink scarf, and a toy machine gun, and jewelry, but not a lot there, and the other girls who had better clothes did not look so much like her, and she won the prize. :)

Katja K

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