REVIEW: Bollywood Boyle scores accolades
With so many movies to choose from this week, I picked a good one - Slumdog Millionaire. I had no idea what to expect with the flick, but what I got was a gripping story replete with intense emotion, action-packed visuals and an eye-opening look at life in the slums of India.
Slumdog is the story of Jamal Malik, a tea server from Mumbai, India. As the movie opens, he is competing on an Indian version of the television show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
When Jamal advances higher in the game, earning ten million rupees, he is arrested on suspicion of cheating.
The movie follows the police interrogation as we learn just how Jamal is able to answer the increasingly tough questions.
As the police go through the first answers, we are shown Jamal's days as a young boy living in the slums. These superb scenes show just how different life in the slums of India is from life in the West - everything from trash disposal to washing clothes.
Perhaps the best part is seeing not the differences in the lifestyles, but the similarities that are also depicted, such as when children are seen playing, causing mischief and trotting off to school.
After an exceptionally traumatic event, Jamal and his brother Salim befriend a girl named Latika, and the three of them are taken to an orphanage.
The brothers escape, but they are unable to free Latika. Jamal never forgets his friend they left behind and appears on the game show in an attempt to reconnect with her.
The scenery in this movie is breathtaking throughout, for both good and bad reasons.
For instance, in one scene Jamal is trapped in a latrine, unable to see his favorite actor who is visiting his village.
In a moment of desperation, Jamal leaps into the pit and emerges covered in excrement, but just in time to run and get an autograph.
There are also beautiful shots of Indian architecture and culture, including the Taj Mahal.
Another noticeable feature of this film is its soundtrack, with two performances receiving Oscar nods for best original song, including one by artist M.I.A.
With its great plot, amazing acting by unknowns and beautiful cinematography, it is no surprise that this film is nominated for a total of 10 Academy Awards, including best picture and best cinematography.
This movie is incredibly moving because it depicts such a wide range of circumstances, and it made me feel almost every emotion I can think of. It is truly disgusting, hilarious, heartbreaking and sentimental in different parts of the film. I left the theatre feeling as though I had been on a wild ride, right along with Jamal.
Of all the movies I have seen this year, this is the one I most highly recommend. I really feel that I hit the jackpot with Slumdog Millionaire, and that's my final answer.
© 2009 DennisBusch.net, University Journal