Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Slumdog Millionnaire

Stereotyping of Indians come with exceptional camera and allied technical specifications in the Oscar winning
Slumdog Millionaire. The movie relates each question in the Indian version of 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire' to the life of Jamal Malik (Dev Patel) in his journey to find his lady love Latika (Frieda Pinto). The direction inputs are offered by Danny Boyle. It has perfect contrast in presentation of sky high buildings, the Hindu deity Lord Rama, angry mob killing mercilessly at Muslim dominated area, call centres and Jamal Malik - the Chaiwala. The movie is based on the debut Novel "Q & A" written by Vikas Swarup.

Finding her is not that easy, but the hero braves all odds. It begins with the last Rs 20 Million question and a flashback to his childhood.

The unfortunate part is Jamal's brother Salim, who stabs his trust by first leaving
childhood love Latika while running from a centre meant to train kids to become experts in begging. They ran just before Jamal's eyes were to be spooned out! Second when Jamal found her again, his brother kept Latika in captivity.

SM has the Taj Mahal, to a kid whose eyes were spooned out pose them to fetch better Alms. From brothels, world of gangsters and of course a ray of hope, exactly its the show 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire'. The show host (played by Anil Kapoor) feds in wrong answer to a question Jamal did not know the answer to. Still Jamal chooses the right answer.

This gets the host to consider that Jamal might be a fraud, cheat, and hands him over to the Police. The contention behind his arrest was, you see Doctors, Engineers, Lawyers do not go beyond Rs. 16,000, what can a
slumdog possibly know?? The slumdog was on Rs. 10 Million! Jamal manages to comes out clean based on the narration of explanation about how he knew answer to each of those questions. And he knew that a 100 dollar note has Benjamin Franklin, but did not know that a Rs. 1000 note has Mahatma Gandhi on it. During the night in police custody, he braved the electric shocks, and sticks while being tied to the roof.

Its not money but the belief that
Latika would be watching, takes him on the show. She watched and managed to gain Salim's mercy and runs away from the clutches of the gangster. At last they meet, in a safer place. Salim is dead, and Javed Bhai (the gangster) too has been killed. The movie ends with a safe place for Latika and Jamal. With an optimism to be together forever.

Please share
your opinion /comments on following :
  1. Whether the movie would have won so many accolades had it been directed by an Indian?
  2. Does the movie has an inherent advantage of being directed by a western, despite the fact that numerous bollywood movies associating with it?
  3. The sheer fact for winning accolades was that it was genuinely a good movie.
Thought I agree to the third one, and would say that 'Movie is a piece of art and SM has an exceptional narration in the most creative fashion'. This is strengthened from the acclaimed received from Indian music maestro A R Rahman who brought home India's very first Oscars for his compositions in the film.

Before coming down to any criticism on depiction of India, I would urge to please stand corrected, numerous Indian films find close resemblance with it, like Sarak, Contract, etc. Besides movies, let us not forget that the nation is full of hate mongers, always ready to offer offensive comments on people from different identity, this ranges from road rage to religion etc.. you know all the drama right!

So let the world speak of our bad too and let us not be too autocratic on only India Shinning features. Lets try and be good, I mean genuinely good.


  1. Well, as you said, even I think that the movie is genuinely good, you actually wrote what was on my mind.. The music and the shots deserved award. And yeah movies like this in future will also be regarded as good, its nothing to do with some foreign director. The fact is that when things are clear in mind, the outcome is always good

  2. My opinion on the same is different. the movie was good and indeed deserved accolades however does it deserve an oscar is still a question mark. the movie depicted slavery,gangster,slums of India.there are good things also about India which the director should have shown in his movie. should we feel proud about the fact that disadvantages of being an Indian has won oscar. there are better movies which portrayed social messages and had better chance of winning an oscar. AR Rahman has given better music in other films than his oscar winning song...

  3. Lets Face it.. the movie would not have been a great success if made by an indian..

    Its about the Brand hit a movie gets if it gets directed by a "FOREIGNER HOLLYWOOD" Man..

    Having said that, You cannot discount the quality of the movie content as well!!

  4. After having seen th film which was undoubtedly interesting, I think that:
    1. It would not have won even one-third of the awards had it been directed by an India (despite the content remaining exactly the same). 2. I thought that there had been other tunes more outstanding created in the past by A.R. Rehman. The ones in this film must have been better than those of other competitors this year, but were not the best of his work.


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