A Review: Slumdog Millionaire


“Slumdog Millionaire” looks to be among those one or two foreign films that break into the American mainstream and become blockbusters at the box office. It has been playing to sold out audiences here in Los Angeles for over a week now, and the audience for the film just seems to grow. It is particularly relevant since the film takes place in many of the southern suburbs of Mumbai, India where this week’s terrorist attacks originated.

The film tells the story of a young man and his haunted past growing up in the slums of Mumbai,and the eventual turn of events that lands him on the “Who Wants To Be a Millionaire?” show in India. Despite his poverty stricken background, it is the streets that teach him all that he knows and that enable him to answer the most difficult of questions. While I found the story to be a bit of a stretch, and therefore difficult for me to buy into entirely, I still found this film to be one of the more compelling of the year and worthy of seeing during this season.

Though the acting is excellent, especially Dev Patel who plays the young man on the brink of being a millionaire, it is the suspenseful writing and plot that carry along the film and keep us interested. The cinematography is captivating, capturing pictures of modern India that are rarely seen by American audiences.

Indians should be proud of this film. It depicts the diversity, life and color of their cities and their people. It’s not all beautiful by any means, but this film depicts people who keep living and hoping when it seems all is lost.

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