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A Journey Into Indian Cinema
605 Ratings


The Vagabond

Directed by Raj Kapoor
India, 1951
Drama, Musical, Romance
A Journey Into Indian Cinema


After feuding with his dad, a judge, Raj Raghunath leaves home and falls in with criminal Jagga. Once he realizes that his new friend is a key figure from his family’s past, Raj kills Jagga. As the crime happened in the elder Raghunath’s jurisdiction, Raj’s case is set to be heard by his father.

Our take

Raj Kapoor’s watershed film belongs to the Golden Age of Hindi cinema, combining multiple genres and serving as a social critique of class in newly independent India. A milestone in introducing global audiences to Bollywood, the film also launched Kapoor’s illustrious Chaplinesque character.

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Critics reviews

Kapoor treats us to courtroom drama, a crime story, some Dead End Kids-style social portraiture, a love story, Chaplinesque comic pathos, a dream sequence, and of course singing and dancing. It’s the cinematic equivalent of sampling a wide-ranging buffet.
July 10, 2014
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