Part Joan of Arc, part Ma Barker, Phoolan Devi in the early 1980's became a folk hero as head of a band of outlaws preying on India's corrupt elite. Her movie bio, saysTIME's Richard Corliss, "has an Indian heart but a Hollywood pulse; an assaultive experience, blistering with ripe obscenities, the frontal nudity of its star and three stark scenes in which Phoolan is raped --- enough to have the film banned 10 times over in a country where a bare shoulder can send the censors frothing." "Bandit Queen" was indeed banned in India, but for what director Shekhar Kapur says are political reasons: the upper-class guardians of public morality who once defamed this low-caste rebel are now ensuring that "Bandit Queen" remains an untouchable.
Photographs:Markey: Terry Ashe for TIMESerbs: Petar Kujundzic/REUTERSTokyo: Masaharu Hatano/REUTERSHiroshima: U.S. Army Signal CorpsU.N.: Mark Cardwell/Reuters