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Slumdog Millionaire and The Oscars
By now, we all know about the big Oscar winner, Slumdog Millionaire, a movie that basically is a rags to riches formula with an Indian spin to it since all of it was filmed there. All of the actors were Indian.
As an American, who knows little about India, I noticed a few things about the film. I was glad I could understand the English being spoken and the accents were not thick. It was clear and at a slower pace than those who I have spoke regarding IT problems. One guy I spoke over the phone rattled on so fast, I stopped him. I told him to slow down the English because it really sounded like a foreign language, which was funny. Of course, I have had the same issue with some Irish and because of the thick accent you ask yourself, "what the hell did he just say"?
Slumdog is a good movie, no question, but it was mostly shot in the slums of India. For me, it was a shock. The filth, the poverty, the mountains of trash that seem to go on forever, people going through it, the dirty water. To me, the only good light the film left to a viewer regarding India were the scenes in and around the Taj Mahal and landscape scenes. But, even that was misguided because the kids in the movie were ripping off the American tourists, which left a negative impression about its people. The religious rift between sects seems to be bad and violent.
Some of the scenes did show a new and modern India but then it was offset by Indian gangs. The movie as a movie was fine. The actors were great, the script unique yet old with true love shining through with no sex scenes. Many viewers will look at the movie as I did, it is a "selling" of India to the world, a PR release to attract tourists etc. Slumdog had the chance to show India in a more respectful light and it failed to do it. Movies are important. Much of the world only knows America from its movies and many have the totally wrong impression about the US from them, I know. I have lived in several European countries and it is amazing what I hear. It is total BS. The same with Slumdog, which can be seen a India's "breakout" movie into Hollywood and America and look how India is portrayed.
Of course, when the film was being made, nobody on the film crew ever thought it would win the Ocsars nor be as popular as it was. I am sure they were in shock. Disbelief.
While Slumdog was good, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, was by far, a more interesting film about how a person is born an old man and dies as a baby and the childhood love he had (just like Slumdog). Brad Pitt did a solid job acting. The whole movie about how time changes the beauty of youth to old age was like a time machine, something we all face someday. Then, at a moment of time, conditions were perfect, equal for a true love to bloom. But time continued and changes happened forcing critical decisions that impacted the rest of their lives. It is a movie that you think about long after you have seen it.