Saturday, November 22, 2008

See This: Slumdog Millionaire


Danny Boyle has had one of the more eclectic directing careers I can think of. He’s taken us from the heroin dens of Edinburgh, to the zombie-infested streets of apocalyptic London to the surface of the sun, and no two have looked remotely alike.

In Slumdog Millionaire, he takes us to the sprawling slums of Mumbai, India for a third world fairy tale. It’s the story of a kid named Jamal who grew up in some of the direst poverty this earth has to offer. He ends up on the Indian version of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?", and shocks everyone by knowing a lot of answers. Over the course of the film, we learn how.

Because it’s a fairy tale – and it is - there’s a pretty girl, and plenty of big bad wolves along the way. Jamal’s rise out of the ghetto mirrors the rise of India itself (I came out of this movie not sure that it’s going to be the Chinese who take over the world from us in 15 years. India is a definite sleeper in this category) and there are more than a few growing pains. One of the better aspects of Slumdog Millionaire is that while it is uplifting, it doesn’t shy away from the harsher aspects of life. It isn’t City of God, but it’s not Annie either.


On a technical note, yes it takes place in India, but most of it’s in English. When there are subtitles, they’re written in a cool, un-subtitley way. So there, you’re out of excuses. Go see Slumdog Millionaire. (And, make sure you stay for the credits!!!)

7 comments:

Jon said...

Never heard of it. Thanks for the tip!

red said...

I really want to see this. The male lead is on my favorite guilty pleasure show, Skins, on BBCA. Glad to hear it's worth seeing. Now, it's a toss up: Slumdog Millionaire or JCVD. Hmm...

words words words said...

The subject matter of this movie doesn't grab me, but Danny Boyle is one of my favorite directors, so I will go. You made a good point about his versatility. I can't think of three movies more different than "28 Days Later", "Millions" and "Sunshine", but I love them all.

pistols at dawn said...

Boyle's career is impressive. "Millions" sounded like a terrible idea - sort of like when "The Straight Story" came out and we had to imagine a G-rated Disney movie by David Lynch - but I've heard about an hour of interviews with him about this movie, and I'm at least mildly interested.

However, I'm mad at India because one of its denizens dragged me to a crappy reggae club last night, so maybe I'll wait for DVD.

CaptCobalt said...

Saw Slumdog Millionaire last night myself, and I too highly recommend this flick.

The cinematography is breathtaking. The chase scene in the slums is reminiscent of the opening sequence of City of God.

The movie has some substance to it asking whether or not things happen for a reason, ie part of a cosmic plan. An interesting question, is destiny the same as God's Will? Is there a reason why I didn't get into an accident at a set of lights whereas the guy in front of me did because the guy on the right ran a red?

It's also the story of what love can do to a person, so it's a great date movie if you can find a partner for it. The actress is quite fetching as well. And the credits were definitely a pleasant surprise.

The Vegetable Assassin said...

Might have to check this out! I loved '28 Days Later' and 'Sunshine' and 'Millions' so I'm up for it!

Garney said...

I'm predicting nominations for Director, Adapted Screenplay and Film Editing... before even seeing it