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Inspired by the true story of Kiranjit Ahluwalia, Jag Mundhra's Provoked tells the tale of a battered wife pushed to the ultimate act of defiance. As a nineteen year old girl living in a small Punjab village with her overbearing sisters and their husbands, Kiranjit Ahluwalia (Aishwarya Rai) aspired to get a college education and see the world. Despite her ambitious plans, however, Kiranjit put her entire future on hold the moment she met handsome family friend Deepak (Naveen Andrews). Later, after a whirlwind romance, Kiranjit and Deepak married and prepared to move into Deepak's home… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 29%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The real-life heroes in this story deserve better than a formulaic, poorly shot melodrama."
‑ Richard Roeper, Ebert & Roeper
"Provoked rarely ducks below its glossy surface."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"A melodrama dressed up just enough to hold interest, in the retelling of an undeniably important story."
‑ Craig Phillips, GreenCine
"In the end, Provoked is not provocative enough."
‑ Mary F. Pols, Contra Costa Times
"Holy Burning Bed! If Britain had its own equivalent of the Lifetime channel, "Provoked" would be tailor made for it."
‑ Laura Clifford, Reeling Reviews
"The script is melodramatic, and Rai's lead performance is thin stuff."
‑ Walter V. Addiego, San Francisco Chronicle
"The true-crime drama Provoked has everything to offer except a cinematic point of view and a knack for depicting human beings under duress. Those are major drawbacks."
‑ Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune
"What should have turned out as a terrific movie about the crime of spousal abuse has instead received the equivalent of a ham-handed molestation by director Mundhra."
‑ Marjorie Baumgarten, Austin Chronicle
"feels largely meaningless and inconsequential"
‑ David Levine,
"PROVOKED: A TRUE STORY sets out to tell an important story in the history of the British judicial system. Unfortunately, the project was undertaken by filmmakers who seemingly didn't know how to handle the implications of the story they wanted to tell."
‑ Ted Murphy, Murphy's Movie Reviews
"[Director] Mundhra can't control the expansiveness of the melodrama or focus on the terseness of realism. Every character in Provoked, from victims to tyrants, Indian to English, loud to quiet, ends up as a grossly exaggerated comic creation."
‑ Kamal Al-Solaylee, Globe and Mail
"Unfortunately, Provoked possesses the tinny production values and schmaltzy music of a prime-time special, despite its ensemble of terrific actors."
‑ Ann Hornaday, Washington Post
"By offsetting Women in Cages-style throw-downs with Malcolm X-like uplift, it is simultaneously strange and familiar, inspiring and annoying."
‑ Cynthia Fuchs, PopMatters
"Account of a legal campaign launched by women to expose the brutality of domestic violence and male chauvinism."
‑ Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spirituality and Practice
"Soapy sermon about the landmark case of a battered wife."
‑ Glenn Whipp, Los Angeles Daily News
More reviews for Provoked on Rotten Tomatoes