Crossover Film: Bend It Like Beckham

In mid 2003, the UK set film Bend It Like Beckham was released in US box office, and grossed $32,541,719 (IMDb). Not only did it achieve success in the economic sense, but this film is a stand out example of the way that cross cultural cinema ‘crosses cultural borders at the stage of conceptualization and production and hence manifests a hybrid cinematic grammar at the textual level, as well as crossing over in terms of its distribution and reception (Khorana, 2013).’

Bend It Like Beckham is such a good example of crossover cinema, because whilst it is set in a Western UK society, we are positioned to see this society through a strict Sikh-Indian family. Jess loves to play football, but throughout the film her family forbid her to play because “she must start behaving like a proper woman”, and “you don’t even want to learn how to cook dhal.” What they know as important, Jess sees as secondary to her infatuation with football.

Crossover cinema allows producers such as Gruinder Chadha (the producer of Bend It Like Beckham) a chance to collaborate with hollywood production companies such as Kintop Pictures to get their art forms to a wider and more diverse audience. Whilst the film does appeal both to the western world with it’s UK setting and hollywood-style production, the Punjabi-Sikh cultural angles of Jess’ family allows it to crossover into a cross cultural audience, therefore bringing in a whole new reception.

quote-in-london-there-was-an-article-about-all-these-girls-bending-it-like-beckham-and-in-india-there-s-parminder-nagra-133663

References

  • Youtube (2008), Bend It Like Beckham Trailer, online video, 3/9/16, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsmbObwStSQ
  • IMDb (2002), Bend It Like Beckham, 3/9/16, http://www.imdb.com/title/tt028649
  • IZQuotes (2016), Parminder Nagra Quotes, 3/9/16, http://izquotes.com/quote/133663
  • Kharona S, UOW Research Online (2013), Crossover cinema: a conceptual and genealogical interview, 3/9/16, http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2020&context=lhapapers
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