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Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Slumdog Millionaire

So I finally got round to watching the massively hyped "Slumdog Millionaire" tonight. The film is hotly tipped to clean up come award season, having been nominated for four Golden Globes, amongst other prestigious gongs. The film's male lead, played by Londoner Dev Patel, is a candidate for a Best Male Supporting Actor nomination at the Oscars. The Harroweigian (shout to Shaz) shot to fame as the most underrated member of an extremely talented Skins cast, and was brought to director Danny Boyle's attention by his daughter, who was a fan of the show. He excels here with a composed and subtle performance which neatly binds the movie's jumbled narrative.

Boyle's greatest triumph however is in the scenery - the captivating backdrop of Mumbai is the real star of the show. The city looks breathtaking. AR Rahman's score is beautiful, perfectly complimenting the movie's stunning visuals. Also stunning is Freida Pinto, the Mumbai-born newcomer who plays the adult Latika. I've officially got a new Bollywood crush.

Ultimately, there is no praise I could give which would sufficiently express my feelings for this great film (but of course that hasn't stopped me from trying!). It's a masterpiece, and one that is essential viewing upon it's commercial release on 9th January. I'm loathe to say much more for fear of either overhyping the movie or spoiling it in any way so I'll conclude with this: Slumdog Millionaire is the best film of the year, visually awe-inspiring, full of life and a triumphant ode to destiny. Fuck if I've over-praised it, this is unmissable.

1 comment:

Rudge said...

I think masterpiece may be perhaps a tad too much, but created that energetic vibe of poverty (if you watch The Culture Show with Mark Kermode, you'd have heard Danny Boyle the director say it was not "abject poverty" as is so often described, but more "industrious poverty" as the people in the slums are working to make a living) that many would have seen in City Of God. I didn't enjoy this that much on first viewing, loved in on 2nd, and then when I saw it with that man Rajiv and the not-so-manly Manny, some of my reservations returned but still an excellent film.

Editing and cinematography are widely appreciated and rightfully so, showing a side of India that is not always seen, even if Mr Bachchan isn't a big fan of it's depiction of Indian society. The soundtrack adds to the atmosphere in the way any top backing music should, and drama, romance and adventure are all portrayed with the skill you'd expect from a director as accomplished as Danny Boyle.

Reservations are not really the film's fault as such. This isn't as good as Boyle's Trainspotting, as it lacks the dark humour that appealed to me so much, and character development across the board isn't as good. On top of that, it does get compared to City Of God and is about one or two notches below that, although very few films aren't!

Still though, deserved my unusually high 8/10 rating!