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Film / Border 1997

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Border is a 1997 Hindi language Bollywood war film, starring an ensemble cast including Sunny Deol, Jackie Shroff, Sunil Shetty and Ajay Devgunn. It is about the famed Battle of Longewalla during the 1971 Indo-Pak War, where a single heavy weapons company under the command of Major Kuldeep Singh Chandpuri successfully held out for an entire night against an onslaught by a whole regiment of Pakistani armor, until the cloud cover cleared and air support could be mobilized.

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Border contains examples of:

  • Armor-Piercing Question: Major Chandpuri tears into Mathura Das for boasting about being sent home on supposedly compassionate leave, leaving his squadmates to fight a battle without him.
  • The Cavalry: The company is saved by a squadron of Hawker Hunter ground attack who arrive just in time to mop up the remaining enemy tanks, just as they run out of ammo.
  • Death from Above: Hawker Hunters were subsonic jet powered ground attack aircraft, and in this case, they plink tanks.
  • The Disease That Shall Not Be Named: Mathura Dad’s wife has contracted it. The army grants him compassionate leave to care for her.
  • For Want of a Nail: The company is tactically weakened because one of its medium machine guns is missing a spring, rendering it incapable of automatic fire.
  • I Choose to Stay: Captain Bhairon Singh of the BSF note  refuses to leave Longewalla with his men, choosing instead to remain with the army and help defend the base.
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  • Inter Service Rivalry: Major Chandipur engages in some friendly ribbing with a fighter pilot played by Shroff.
  • Hold the Line: Half the movie is about Major Chandipur’s company holding the line for an entire night against Pak armor.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Mathura Das the soldier who had abandoned his company note  returns at the last moment to install a spring into a Machine Gun and dies in the process.
  • Wet Blanket Wife: The Major’s wife has her father pull strings to get her husband transferred away from the front lines to a regional headquarters to keep him safe. Kuldip who wants to fight in the war, is furious. He threatens to divorce her unless she backs off.
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