Monday, March 30, 2009

Monday, March 02, 2009

Slumdog Millionaire

I finally got around to seeing Slumdog Millionaire yesterday. I have been reading reviews since last fall, but was afraid it would just be too depressing. And then the commercials kept saying, "Feel good movie of the year." It's not a feel good movie. It deals with the reality of how countless children around the world are living each day - in slums, on their own, trying to find some way to survive, hanging on to any amount of hope available.

This is one of the best movies I have seen in years. It truly deserved every Oscar it won last week. It is a movie that was perfectly made to reflect the global world in which we live today - one where poverty and violence is pervasive, but yet there is still this need for hope no matter how outlandish it may seem (like winning a game show). The movie does an excellent job of telling its story - it slides between the improbable game show, the disbelief and torture, and the story of this young man who never gives up (as represented beautifully in the childhood outhouse scene, incidentally, one of the funniest scenes I have witnessed in a while).

The actors are excellent. The children are so winning, and Dev Patel as adult Jamal is so powerful and understated. Yet, its the story and the city itself - representative of our world - that is truly the story. In the midst of hell and death, there is always hope.

My grade - A