Slum Dog Millionaire, time to celebrate

Lets get this right. Slumdog is an Indian film. So what if it the funds came from outside India. The funds for Bandit Queen came from the same source and it is considered an Indian film. The funds for Chandni Chowk to China came from Warner brothers, but it is considered an Indian film. So what if the Director is British, for his take on the film is completely Indian. Except for the Director, Screen Writer and one of the Producers, everyone else of the 100 odd people that make a complete film unit were Indian. The film is based on book by an Indian author.
It is easily the most successful Indian film ever. And it will get at least 3 Oscars ( but who cares about them anyway) and will ultimately go on the make $ 200 million in world wide box office and other rights. That is 10 times what has been achieved by any other Indian film, including the ones that are getting all the media hype now.
Danny and his team have done a terrific film and they deserve everything that is coming to them. It does not matter that no Indian director thought of the film. It is good that someone did and made a film. In India in any case it would have been almost impossible to find funding for this film ( $ 15 million), and keep the integrity of the story. But hopefully this film has paved the way for other Indian films that appeal internationally, and producers and financing companies will wake up to the opportunity. And buyers overseas will now be more open to films from India –
Well done Danny and his team and thank you for making this wonderful film.

66 thoughts on “Slum Dog Millionaire, time to celebrate

  1. Wouldn’t you agree if this movie was directed by an Indian Director it would have been just another good indian movie. It would have never made it this big. The name of this movie would have been somthing different not “Slum Dog Millionare”.

  2. Hey am Kenyan and i bumped into this site after googling the movie.
    I must say that the story is simple and creatively told…moving at the same time.
    Just watched it and hope it wins the Oscars…whatever they are.

    Peculiar BRITISH ATTITUDE TOWARDS INDIANS, wonder when are they going to come out of this
    illusion and understand that INDIA is much much more than slums. I feel they are satifying
    themselves by picturising wrongly about India by just showing 10% of india as the major. I bet
    if you show the shit in your body for two hours, make a movie out of it, dosent mean the whole of
    the body is made of shit, thats what the movie is like, the director has (called a slum dweller a
    slumdog) only covered the slums , child abuse, prostitution in 75% of the movie, even the tajmahal
    when shown is picturised from such an angle which covers the dirt more than, the view of tajmahal. I
    pity the director for his sadism, But the most surprising is OSCAR, i am now getting a feeling that
    indian shit is so liked by oscarians that i think if i film a Indian person shiting for 2 hrs i
    stand a good chance of wining an oscar, so that means Indian shit is pretty valuable.
    This surely is not a real picture of India, and was nothing true, i havent seen any couple doing a
    french kiss on a station platform in mumbai. Its more of a documentary film, I also wish the Prime
    Minister of India sees the film.
    If you are a real Indian your blood will boil. I suggest dont watch the movie in a theater and help
    their revenue, and forward this message to the maximum you can, i think thats what we can do right
    Hemant, Hyderabad, INDIA

  4. To Shekhar and all who commented on this Blog
    I watched Slum dog last weekend and absolutely loved it. Yes, this is coming from a person born and brought up in Mumbai. And while I don’t live there anymore, I consider myself a pure Mumbaite.
    From the subject matter and the comments I see so far, I felt this movie really identified some major issues in our civic and social fabric. We as Indians cannot deny the problems that our society faces. What is the use of national pride, civilization, parampara, when a sizable number of our children do not have access to security, education, good nutrition, health and opportunities to develop themselves into productive individuals?
    Also, it is so counter productive to criticize the film-maker because of his non Indian ness. And for all those who are on this racism rant, which Indian can stand up and say color is not an issue for them?
    Would love to leave this post on a positive note and say bravo to the actors, the director and the film crew. The performances were riveting (every single one of them). There have always been good films whether commercial or non but I think acting and film-making in India has evolved incredibly. And the fact that they are being considered for so many non Indian awards, shows how Indian cinema is now appealing to a much larger audience.

  5. shekar i agree that its a time to celebrate .But
    I am surprised to see hoardings in Mumbai and debate on television channel to attack Danny Boyle’s Slumdog Millionaire for peddling Indian poverty to west.
    These great movies actually send out a strong message to the world that “India is all set to become Superpower”.
    At one end, you have country “India” with approx 230 Millions people living below poverty line(as per year 2005). As per the World Bank definition of Poverty line, 85.7% of Indian population lives on less than $2.50 (PPP) a day. Also we have inequality in wealth distribution which is explained well by Gini Coefficent.
    And on the other hand, you have same country which has a ability to produce engineering marvel as well as the most cost-efficient cars “Tata Nano” all by itself. It is the same country that provides engineering support to multinationals, writes software and hardware in the IT space that helps global giants and can even launch a Moon Mission by itself.
    Just imagine, what wonders, this country can do if we have right leadership.India awaits a Leader which can provide proper employment opportunities to millions. It will help slumdogs to earn a reasonable life style with essentials like Roti , Kapada aur Makan ( food ,clothing and house ).
    I am astonished by the fact that foreigner has depicted India‘s Slum story so correct. Slum life in the movie “slumdog millionaire” is absolutely correct
    Its a key economic indicator for super rich communities/business people across the world. India is the Only country to invest as its moving up the value chain. Days are not far when you will see Sensex crossing the 40,000 marks .
    “Slumdog Millionare” confirms growth story of Incredible India!!

  6. I find the people getting so angry about this film pitiful.
    This film is not about India – it is merely a uplifting story about someone overcoming the situation they are born into.
    People who see SM as a “western plot” (the term “western” being just as generalising and ignorant as any slur against india) clearly have not seen many western films.
    In the “West” films are frequently portraying crime, poverty, drug use, prostitution and corruption, including Danny Boyle’s “Trainspotting” about drug abuse in Scotland.
    Film’s are supposed to tell a story, provoke thought, highlight issues not an extension of the Indian tourist board.
    We should consider ourselves lucky to be able to communicate via the medium of the internet, when 250 million Indians live in porverty. SHAME ON YOU for wishing to sweep these people under the carpet. I have no doubt that India with its innovation and resources will rise to be a superpower, but that does not make it exempt from critism and this change will be slow and sometimes painful, as it was when Britain became industrialised – large segments of the population were condemned to child labour, disease and death while a rigid class system kept the rich on top – sound familiar? 😉
    face it, a bunch of foreign producers and actors have come into India, truly abosorbed the culture and with alot more artfulness and truthness to reality have made a film which transcends (in the majority at least) the mostly mundane Bollywood productions.

  7. sir,
    i felt really ashamed and every one should be get ashamed, bcoz it has revealed the truth of filthy indian life styles over here,i was a frog of a well i thought we are living a luxorius life,but i learnt that mumbai is not less than a hell

  8. The theme of hte movie would be made “live” if only one of the kids can also be invited as an actor. Imagine Darsheel can compete for an national award and these kids can’t. Unfair, i feel.

  9. Dear Sekhar
    The film drew me to my childhood days and village life. It is always surprise me that such types of film are coming from abroad. I t shows the real picture of MUBAY and the culture involved. Even the year passes India become stronger in the modern world such things will be repeated.

  10. Shilpi,
    I think the movie has been successful in igniting such feelings in you- a promise to change the way india is, an urge to do some thing for the kids in the slum, and for the proverty that we send a blind eye on. I don’t care how westerners’ took it, I know such things exists in india, when we see it replicated in movies, there is a better chance more people will be willing to do some thing to make a positive difference- even one person getting influenced by this is a BIG SUCCESS for the movie.

  11. Odd, the strange anti western theme in some of these posts.
    Did you know slums exist outside of India and people even make good movies about them as well?
    They show violence and sex, even other bad things!
    The reason the western world is not into many Bollywood films is the general view that they are mainly silly soap opera musicals. The reason this movie works is it tells an indian story from the view of an indian(S) but in a western theme.
    The only part of the movie that had dancing was in the credits where it belonged. DO you think the movie would have had the same effect with random dancing mixed in with it?
    Of course not all Bollywood movies are setup like that but many are. And until Bollywood grows out of weird musicals a Bollywood film is about as attractive to a western or even NON – indian as acid.
    So fill free to feel indignant about outsiders disliking most Indian movies, India can support Bollywood itself. But if you think for a second the majority of Indian films can hold off the quality of western movies you are mistaken. You can even compare foreign movies from other countries. Compare what comes out of China, Russia, France, Brazil, Canada etc etc….

  12. A few points for background :
    1. The better the person’s caliber, the more successful the person is, the greater the crtiticism. That is the irony of life.
    2. A winner is not as afraid of loosing as a looser is afraid of winning. It is a matter of what you are used to more that governs your mind set.
    3. Just because India has risen in status in a few spheres of life, why should the rest of the world change its opinion all of a sudden, even more so its biases[biases are attached to egos which are generally difficult to understand and deal with]
    People, think about it and give your selves an honest answer. Leave the movies to be judged for thier caliber as movies. If you feel the movies geting the awards are not worth it; wake up, when was life fair anyways. Sometimes except the pleasant side too 🙂

  13. as most threads reflect the same sentiment, i concurr to opine that slum dog millionare is a hyped film and i feel to the extent that oscars may come its way more of out of hype and other sort of pressures rather than the true merit of the film. For example rahman has made scores much superior to the jai ho song. There is no subtelity to the film nor is there any sensible message. A film made on resilience of mumbaites post terror attacks and floods would have made more sense. maniratnams bombay is a much superior film compared to SDM

  14. I totally agree with what Shekhar has to say. Wish Amitabh bachchan had that sense. He seems to have lost it.
    Well done all.

  15. Mr.Shekhar Kapur,
    After analyzing this slum dog article, i came to realize that your personal views and your intellectual has vast distance between.
    I am now unsubscribing this blog from my list.
    Really awaiting a flick like “The Four Feathers” at least.
    All the best.
    (PS – Elizabeth: The Golden Age is a cliche)

  16. YO PPL…..

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