Watching Slumdog Millionaire on the Long Weekend


Long weekend was one of those nice, slow n easy ones. Spent the weekend doing pretty much nothing. That’s the best, right ๐Ÿ™‚

On Republic Day, we watched the parade on the TV, I made bisi-bele bath, and we all chilled n stuffed our faces. After the mammoth lunch, I was all set to crash, but realized that I had committed to watching Slumdog Millionaire with my friends.

Slumdog Millionaire poster

Slumdog Millionaire poster

Somehow, managed to drag myself out in time to reach the theatre and I am so glad I did.

I absolutely loved the movie !. The performances are terrific – especially the ones by the children. The movie moves quickly from one experience to another, and the direction is terrific. The music is good. Not A R Rahman’s greatest, but it suits the movie.Truly deserves all the nominations / awards it gets.

There are a couple of things that could be better :

  • The performance of Freida Pinto is surprisingly wooden – especially considering how much it has been hyped up by the media.
  • The second half of the movie was a bit predictable. In fact, things start to drag a bit once the children grow up. But that could be just me, I loved those kids in the movie so much…

To all the movie critics who have been harping about the exploitation of slum-dwellers by western movie makers, I say everyone has a right to make a movie on the subject he/ she chooses. In addition, Danny Boyle has portrayed a reality that few people are strong enough to face. As an audience (especially of Bollywood movies), we are used to an air-brushing of the realities of some people’s existence. We like to see movies with pretty people living / travelling to exotic destinations and solving their petty romantic issues.

Unfortunately, for me everything looked only too realistic. I have lived in Mumbai and I have seen that yes! the slums look pretty much as they are depicted in the movie. These are no sets, they are the actual slums. In fact, anyone travelling to Mumbai on train can see these slums close-up as they approach Mumbai.

The only unrealistic aspect of the movie, was that this uneducated hero (Jamal) was able to speak English, was able to appear on the show, and win a bundle of money. That’s unrealistic ! and that’s sad.

In real life, such a boy would have ended up like the hero’s brother – a gangster – living and dying by the gun.

5 Responses
  • Your final para spoiled the entire review. The entire theme is that Jamal wins the prize money because he had the answers for all those questions in his life experiences.

    As regards speaking in English, they do show you that he can speak English in one of the scenes when he give answers in a training class and also when he takes the chair of one of the call center guys.

    You are right about Frieda Pinto’s portrayal. So she is not nominated for “Best Actress” anywhere.


    • Nish
      January 28, 2009

      I did not say that I minded the theme. What I feel bad about is the unlikeliness of this happening to poor slum kids. I guess I didn’t express myself fully ๐Ÿ™‚

      Thanks for the comment. I always love reading other people’s points of view

  • Deepa
    January 27, 2009

    Thanks, that was a great and neat review:)
    Will watch it for sure, very soon…well, let me just say, hope to watch it soon ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Nish
      January 28, 2009

      Ya, it is definitely worth watching

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