indian cinema heritage foundation

Chandrakanta (1956)

  • Release Date1956
  • GenreHistorical, Drama
  • FormatB-W
  • LanguageHindi
  • Censor RatingU
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Peaceful Rajgadh is invaded by the tyrant Virjal, whose army overruns the tiny kingdom. Virjal usurps the ruler's throne. 

Under the influence of the alcohol, the tyrant one day comes upon the Princess Chandrakanta, daughter of the vanquished king. Struck by her beauty, he lays hands on her and is spurned. The defeated king strives to defend his daughter's honour, only to be slain by Virjal. Over her father's dead body, the princess vows vengeance. Picking up the sword with which her father was killed, she challenges Virjal to a duel. A superb swordswoman, Chandrakanta gets the better of the tyrant but is forced by his henchmen to let him escape his fate.

Deprived of her abode in the palace and her royal rights, she seeks refuge in the ashram of a noble guru and also finds solace there. Here the princess falls in love with the poet Kunal and under the guidance of the guru, plans to win back her father's kingdom. Meanwhile, Virjal, drunk with power and a sense of greatness, comes to believe that he is a god. The thought grows to be an obsession with him and he makes his followers proclaim him a god. They ravage temples and, in place of the sacred idols, install images of him. 

The people grow restive and protest against the tyrant's high handedness. They rebel and Virjal and his henchmen find it difficult to subdue them. 

Chandrakanta now comes forward to lead the people in their revolt. Armed with weapons of all kinds, they march upon Virjal's stronghold. The latter, who has underestimated their strength, is caught unawares. Defeated, he escapes to a temple where he had installed a large image of himself, is pursued by Chandrakanta, and killed by her in the fight which follows. Ascending her father's throne, the princess is joined in her hour of triumph by her lover Kunal.