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Slumdog Millionaire

2009-03-09 09:17
 
Slumdog Millionaire

What it's about:

Eighteen-year-old Jamal Malik (Dev Patel) is on the verge of winning the Indian edition of game show Who Wants to be a Millionaire? But his success has made the authorities suspicious: because Jamal is an uneducated young man who grew up in the slums, how is it possible that he knows the answers to any of the questions? Jamal is soon being subjected to some heavy-handed interrogation at the hands of a Mumbai police sergeant (Saurabh Shukla). To prove his innocence, Jamal explains how he answered each of the questions he has been asked so far – and in the process, the young 'slumdog' tells his life story. From his childhood struggles trying to survive with brother Salim (Madhur Mittal) by his side, and meeting a young girl named Latika (Freida Pinto), it’s a wild ride…


What we thought of it:

By now, every dedicated moviegoer knows that the making of Slumdog Millionaire is an almost exact replica of the story told in the movie: a rags-to-riches tale of a person who starts out with zero prospects in life and ends up with just about everything you could ask for.. The fact that it’s won eight Oscars, including Best Film and Best Director, means that whatever I write about this little $13-million movie isn’t going to make much difference. Hordes of people will watch the film simply because it’s one of those must-see multiple award-winners that people will talk about and refer to for years to come.

So here’s my advice: don’t expect too much from Slumdog. As you’ll know if you’ve read the charming novel on which it’s based (Vikus Swarup’s Q&A) the story is really not much more than a contemporary fable, albeit one that also provides a vivid, unforgettable snapshot of what life is like for millions of children in India today.

Jamal, Salim and Latika struggle through young lives that encompass extreme poverty, deprivation and, at times, appalling abuse – but the film’s fairy-tale ending (complete with fabulous Bollywood-style dance number) is clearly predetermined from the start. Or predestined, if you like.

So if you go to see Slumdog expecting incisive commentary on Third World poverty and its effect on children, or a heroic personal struggle against the odds that reveals something profound and new about humanity, you’ll be disappointed. Instead, bear those other six Oscars in mind, jump on board the Slumdog Express and lose yourself in Jamal’s crazy ride. Then you can expect to be swept along by the clever plotting, the brilliant editing and the breathtaking cinematography.

You’ll also be gobsmacked by the superb work of the child performers (who make their screen debut as Jamal, Salim and Latika in their formative years) and tapping your foot to the sublime soundtrack. And if you aren’t in a great mood when the credits have rolled, I’ll be very surprised.



Love, loss and destiny combine to magical effect in the must-see movie of the year. Discover why it’s won eight Oscars and the hearts of millions.

Fatima 2009/03/06 9:10 AM
Thank you for a proper review... the way the world is hyping this movie is shocking! SDM is very much an average 'bollywood' movie...and the only reason it's getting recognition is because it's made by a Westerner. I've seen too many bollywood movies which are far superior to this movie but would never even get a notice from the Oscar!... I'm still trying to figure out how a slum kid gets a Brit accent as he grows up!!! Also one of the answers on the show is wrong! The only deserved winners are the music composer AR Rahman..the man is a genius and sadly SDM isn't even his best work... I mean he has just come out with another album for the film Delhi 6, just brilliant songs in it! Of course Rasool Pookutty deserved it...heck..there is such great talent in India, unfortunately because of the prejudice, India will Indian actors, technicians will only get noticed when there is a westerner at the helm of things! The best part about SDM are the young kids, so natural and innocent, that was the best part of the movie, when it comes to Jamal played by Dev Patel and you wonder if 'wood' had more expressions... So SDM gets 8 Oscars...that does not make it a great movie...all it is.....is just a 'nice' movie!
Ideal 2009/03/06 1:30 PM
I agree, the movies is just as good as many i have seen. But to say it's best movie i've seen in a while would be exaggerating it a little. i'm not sure what the procedure are when it comes to awards nominations, i still don't what all this hype is about.
Fathima 2009/03/06 9:40 PM
This movie was really great I really enjoyed it alot.
leilah 2009/03/06 10:05 PM
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uh yeah couldn't care less I'm too young to be wasting my life like this. If you ask me SDM is joke(probably because I'm in a bad mood). But none the less, maybe the Oscars are just losing their touch and mybe we should stop listening to them and watch interesting original movies, like the Curious Case of Benjamin...
Monica 2009/03/07 11:35 AM
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Just as a matter of interest: the writer of Q&A, Vikas Swarup, , the book that originated the movie, is an Indian Diplomant that lives currently in Pretoria, SOuth Africa. The book is a fairy tale
Lance 2009/03/07 2:25 PM
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I watched SDM last night and was very disappointed. I'm not sure what all the fuss is about and I wonder why it even won one oscar. The acting is mediocre at best and the storyline has been well documented in probably 1000 movies before. It's so mediocre and predictable that it borders on boring. This movie was made for a much younger audiance and avid movie watchers will share my view. One cannot compare this movie to others in its genre. At the end of the movie Indian people were clapping hands and applauding. Strange, I wonder if these same people had the same reaction after watching the epic Ghandi?! My feelings are that if you have nothing to do for two hours and have R33 to spare, watch the movie and realise why there is no reason what so ever to visit India as a tourist destination.
Dalton 2009/03/07 6:07 PM
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i watched SMD last night, da movie is avarage 4 me and i think oscar is losing thier touch, when it comes to awards, i know brilliant movies better than SMD but neva won 8 oscars.
Sevendust 2009/03/08 4:12 PM
Slumdog Millionaire: as hyped as the English Patient and just as kak. Nuff said.
Pop Idol 2009/03/08 9:03 PM
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Why are we in South Africa being bombarded with rubbish from Bollywood? i hate eating curry...From what ive seen at live productions, South Africans can ACT, no doubt about it.Please,make more South African movies and keep Bollywood in India.
J2TheB 2009/03/09 12:35 AM
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This movie was awesome! Those who are giving this movie a bad review, frankly, is just being negative.
Pap Idol 2009/03/09 8:19 AM
Pop Idol, go eat a boerie roll, if you don't like it don't watch it.
Sandy 2009/03/09 8:59 AM
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For those that don't like Bollywood movies you are not forced to, you have a choice and you choosed to see that so stop the fuss.
Sharon 2009/03/09 9:37 AM
What a boring movie , as has been said the "plot" is the same as 1000's of other much better movies...."The feel good movie of the decade" seriously ? a child had his eyes burnt out , children became orphans , torture , poverty and filth , brother killed.........prostitution - good grief people - feel good yet ???? horrible movie , unoriginal , and OMG loooooong. Ps : Anne get a dictionary , there really is no need for that scummy langauge , you will see there are so many other wors out there to use - will definately make you look a touch more educated and classy.
A. J 2009/03/09 9:50 AM
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i watched this movie and it was awesome!!!! The little kid who plays Jamal is soooooo cute. This is a must watch for everyone
Roger 2009/03/09 10:44 AM
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I also thought the movie wasn't worth that much fuss, but you get so few genuine fairytales these days. It's brilliant that theirs came true :D
Shalini 2009/03/09 12:01 PM
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The movie was Brilliant! I laughed and I cried. It was sad to see how these people live. The kids performance where stunning. Jamal was nothing short of brilliance!
Poppy 2009/03/10 3:09 PM
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Pop Idol, those people who are forcing your mouth open and forcing you to watch movies about Indian people must be reported. I suggest you watch Poena is Koning you will feel much better as it will match your level of understanding.
Jon Quirk 2009/03/10 3:18 PM
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Hollywood meets Bollywood meets reality TV = Pap for the masses. If you must go, don't take either your brain or your best friend...
Reon 2009/03/13 8:06 AM
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I swear, most of the people that commented here are total morons ! The movie was great. It was a brilliant "fairy tail" movie with masses of real world influence and scenarios that everybody could relate to. I fully enjoyed every second of the two hour journey and I would recommend it to anybody ! Well done !
Reon 2009/03/13 12:01 PM
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O, Fatima. I would like to know what answer on the show was wrong?
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