This is one of my favourite films. I have loved it ever since I first saw it four years ago. I first got it after seeing Danny Boyle’s film Sunshine. I had watched that film because I liked to watch a lot of Science Fiction, and I was watching various movies with actor Cillian Murphy in them. I was further interested in watching Slumdog Millionaire because of its awards showing.
I generally find Best Picture winners to be pompous, overblown pleas for awards. I find the best picture nominees to actually seem more interesting than the winners. That aside, Slumdog Millionaire is a genuinely good movie, not apparently made for the academy award voters.
The story is told in three separate timelines. The first one is Jamal’s torture at the hands of the police. They have reason to suspect he has been cheating at a game show and are trying to force a confession. The other storyline follows Jamal’s progress through the game show as he is reminded of it by the officers. The third jumps through Jamal’s life, showing how he knows the answers to the questions.
The largest portion of the film is spent on Jamal’s life leading up to the point of the game show. We are shown his childhood with his brother and the loss of their mother. They meet up with an orphan girl and travel, having different adventures and struggles surviving in India.
Jamal’s goal is to survive and rejoin the girl, Latika. In this sense, the film is an epic love story. It spans years and shows how life is always getting in the way of their love. The other storylines aren’t a snooze either. The interrogation scenes are tense and revelations of character. The game show scenes are more fun, but they also show Jamal’s fight against the world as the host and crowd seem to mock him.
This film almost feels like it was made for me. It has so many elements that play into my tastes. It opens with scenes from just before the end. It is told with multiple storlines out of chonological order. It is a character piece centered around showing one person and their environment.
My favourites from the film: The aforementioned elements. I love the way the film is cut. Scenes of Jamal’s torture scenes are cut between torture and first entering the game show. The dialogue snaps back and forth between the characters, and they all have unique voices. The music in this film fits perfectly in ever scene.
My less enjoyed parts: I love everything, so I really don’t have anything to put here. I include some negatives in the next section. It is honestly in my top two favourties of all time.
My Recommendation: The only things bad I can say about it is that there is some repetitive imagery and Danny Boyle often uses a jagged frame rate in scenes of intensity. The jagged frames are also blown out and have some kind of lower quality filter on them. So unless you want to watch something absolutely beautiful to look at, then I’d say this movie is awesome for anyone.