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Sunday, February 1, 2009

Slum Dog Millionaire



More than 25years back, in the beginning of 1980’s, an English film with an Indian theme, produced by the English, were in the news. It was none other than ‘Gandhi’ directed by Richard Attenborough. The film caught attention not because of the fact that it has got great awards and honors but due to the importance of theme it handled. It was a celluloid biography of the father of our nation.

Now in this period another English film is in the news. The name of the film is ‘Slum Dog Millionaire’ directed by Danny Boyle. But, this time the situation is different. The film became popular after it has got many Oscar nominations. Among these, A.R.Rahman (Music) and Russel Pookkutty (Sound Mixing) who got nominations, belong to South India.


The prominent show handled by Amitabh Bachan in Star TV, “Kaun Banega Crorepati” is the main theme behind ‘Slum Dog Millionaire’. Here the hero, who hails from a slum area in the rural Mumbai, reaches the final of the show. Though not well educated, he answers all the questions through his experience. The quiz master (Anil Kapoor) got doubted, he complaints, hero is being taken into police custody. So just before the final day, he tells his story to the investigation officer (Irfan Khan). How the hero got answers for all the questions were shown in an excellent way through his real life story which happened in the slums with the beggars, pick pockets, underworld gangs, bpo centers etc.


The director has treated the film without keeping the audience boring. The challenge faced by the hero in his real life and the questions faced by him in the Crorepati game is shown in parallel. The real picture of the Mumbai slums is captured through different stages in the life of hero (Dev Patel), his brother, heroine (Freida Pinto) and their friends. A love story underneath also happens there.


Anyway already controversies aroused over the fact that the film has got nomination in Oscar only after exploiting the poverty of the Indians. But I can’t agree with that. It is ours liberty to claim that our country is not poor and critical as it is shown in this film, but on the other side you should notice that the makers of this movie has got the liberty on their creativity also. The same story should have occurred on the mind of an Indian director also, but it didn’t happen.


Anthony Dod Mantle’s camera and Chris Dickens’ editing are notable. All the members in the technical wing have done their job well. A.R.Rahman’s background score is good. The film’s story is based on novel written by an Indian, Vikas Swarup. Danny Boyle’s direction is extra ordinary.


I have got a personal disagreement on the Oscar nomination regarding “Jay ho…” song for A.R.Rahman. It is good to see an Indian name written along with Oscar; in that aspect I will keep silent. But …it is not the best.


‘Slum Dog Millionaire’, an Indian film by the English, is a cross-section of the certain area of the Indian society. The team behind has told us how such people can achieve great position through their life experience.


Rating : 4 / 5

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