South Asian Britain on Film

Discover a rich history reaching back over a century as we celebrate South Asian communities and culture across Britain.

From local news to feature film, through home movies and TV documentaries, this collection showcases South Asian Britons in front of and behind the camera. The contribution of colonial troops is illuminated through the earliest newsreels, while hardhitting current affairs programmes highlight the struggles faced in the 1960s, 1970s and beyond. Public information films produced for South Asian audiences feature alongside Hindi-language films made in Britain and interviews with prominent Asian-British figures. A bold wave of British Asian filmmaking in the 1990s is represented through early works by the likes of Gurinder Chadha and Asif Kapadia.

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Wild WestWild West

Comedy199284 minsDirector: David Attwood

Defying opposition from his conservative Pakistani family, Zaf Ayub dreams of becoming Southall's greatest gift to country & western.

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My Pure LandMy Pure Land

Drama201798 minsDirector: Sarmad Masud

Britain's 2018 submission for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar was this Pakistan-shot western with a feminist twist, centring on a bitter land dispute between an extended family.

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Oh for the Wings of a DoveOh for the Wings of a Dove

Documentary1972 minsDirector: Nick Gifford

The vibrancy of rural Pakistan is transported to Balsall Heath, Birmingham in this intimate family portrait.

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A Private EnterpriseA Private Enterprise

Drama197472 minsDirector: Peter K. Smith

The trials and tribulations of Shiv, a South Asian entrepreneur trying to set up a business in industrial Birmingham

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This Question of ColourThis Question of Colour

Documentary196529 minsDirector: William Brayne

Dcumentary about race relations in Britain from a US standpoint, including a report on the 1964 election in Smethwick.

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Catch Me DaddyCatch Me Daddy

Thriller2013112 minsDirector: Daniel Wolfe

A young couple whose relationship has divided a community are forced on the run through the streets and moors of nocturnal Yorkshire.

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Bride & PrejudiceBride & Prejudice

Musical2004107 minsDirector: Gurinder Chadha

Gurinder Chadha’s Bollywood retelling of Austen’s classic romance is an all-round joy, adding colour and song to Austen’s evergreen wit.

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Brothers in TroubleBrothers in Trouble

Drama1995103 minsDirector: Udayan Prasad

Udayan Prasad's perceptive 1995 drama follows Amir (Pavan Malhotra), a Pakistani immigrant living in England and adjusting to his new life - including meeting an Irish girl who moves into his boarding house.

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East Is EastEast Is East

Comedy199997 minsDirector: Damien O'Donnell

Damien O'Donnell's charming comedy-drama about Zaheed Khan (Om Puri), the patriarch of a Pakistani-British family whose children begin to reject their heritage and embrace UK life.

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Bhaji on the BeachBhaji on the Beach

Comedy1993101 minsDirector: Gurinder Chadha

Gurinder Chadha's charming and critically acclaimed comedy about a group of British Asian women from Birmingham who bond during a day-trip to Blackpool.

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Bend it Like BeckhamBend it Like Beckham

Sport2002112 minsDirector: Gurinder Chadha

Gurinder Chadha’s smash hit about an Asian girl with an undying love for football.

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Viceroy's HouseViceroy's House

Drama2016106 minsDirector: Gurinder Chadha

Gurinder Chadha channels David Lean for this sweeping romance set during the last days of the Raj, with Hugh Bonneville and Gillian Anderson as Lord and Lady Mountbatten.

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Drama198478 minsDirector: Ahmed Alauddin Jamal

Abandoned by her husband through an arranged marriage, a young Pakistani woman decides to make a life in England

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Circle of GoldCircle of Gold

Documentary198850 minsDirector: Uday Bhattacharya

Calcutta where myth, religion and folktales co-exist with aspirational life-style adverts

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I Can't Think StraightI Can't Think Straight

Drama200879 minsDirector: Shamim Sarif

The story of an affair between a Palestinian woman and her British Indian friend, from the same team behind The World Unseen.

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196627 minsDirector: James Butler

Follow 'the great adventure of emigration' from Delhi to London.

More South Asian Britain films in our Free collection.

All in Good Time from South Asian Britain

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