At last it has culminated with the ultimate triumph!
“Slumdog Millionaire”, which was nominated for 10 Academy Awards made a great run by sweeping away 8 Oscars, including that of the ‘Best Film’. Danny Boyle won the award for Best Director, Simon Beaufoy for Best Adapted Screenplay, Chris Dickens for film Editing, Anthony Dod Mantel for cinematography. Sound mixing award was shared with Rasool Pookutty, Ian Tapp and Richard Pryke.A R Rahman,the Indian musician won two awards- The Best Music Score Award and also for the Best Song shared with lyricist Gulzar.
For the past few months, there were also a lot of criticism and controversy going around this film on the view that the film depicted the lives of impoverished India, and also regarding the treatment of cast. It also faced criticism regarding the welfare aspects of its child actors. The director had to face accusations from some Indian media that his film was ‘poverty porn’. But according to Danny Boyle, it was an endeavor to capture Mumbai’s ‘Lust for life. The real controversy started with the comments in the blog of the legendary Indian actor Amitab Bachan. Following this; many more from the Indian film industry came forth with their critical views. Apart from the treatment of the film, issues also aroused that the compensation provided for the child actors were unfair.Another controversy was that the Co-Director of the film Mrs. Loveleen Tandan wasn’t included as co-nominee for the awards.This controversy even turned to the moods of Women Rights issue.
Leaving all these controversies apart and viewing it as a piece of art, the film is one of the riveting and the best portrayed films in recent times.”Slumdog Millionaire” which was actually filmed based on the novel of the Indian Author and diplomat Vikas Swarup named”Q&A”. The novel which delineated the exploitation and misery of orphans children, was exquisitely portrayed into the celluloid by the British Director- Danny Boyle.Even Vikas Swarup wouldn’t had expected such a beautiful and realistic illustration of his work.
The film beautifully renders major social aspects like Poverty, Orphan hood, riots, child harassment, under world, begging, brothel-houses, urbanization, cricket etc through a beautifully illustrated love story.
The story is of an 18 year old Jamal Malik’s journey from the slushy waste dump Slum in Mumbai to a hot seat of the Quiz Show -“Who wants to be a Millionaire” -The story moves with his progress in the show as he answers correctly. The reason how a primary school drop out Jamal Malik reaches the answers rightly, where even high qualified professionals failed to do, is the core of the film. Even the quiz master and the official law enforcement authorities turns suspicious on this. But,the answers were actually linked to incidents in the life of Jamal. The other protagonists in this film are Jamal’s brother Saleem and their childhood friend Lathika, for whom Jamal had a never ending adoration. The film conveys all the sufferings they had to face in their life with a realistic diction- the communal riots which made them orphans, the nightmarish world they had to spent with child beggars, the life in the streets and their striving for existence-even to an extend of killing for subsistence, the real picture of brothel houses, the rivalry, the separations, the longing despair etc.The film actually ends with the message that the ultimate triumph is only for true love and honesty.
Apart from Danny Boyle’s direction, the screen play of Simon Beaufoy, the editing of Chris Dickens, the cinematography of Anthony Dod Mantel and the music score of A.R Rahman were exemplary and can be attributed to the reason for this film to win such an applause. Another main highlight of the film is the lifelike performance of the actors, especially the child actors. The performance of Ayush Mahesh Khedekar, Tanay Chheda and, Dev Patel as Jamal in various ages, and Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail, Ashutosh Lobo Gajiwala and Madhur Mittal as Salim in various ages, Rubina Ali, Tanvi Ganesh Lonkar and Frieda Pinto as Lathika had contributed to a great extend in maintaining the realism of the film. The credit of their casting goes to the Co-director of the film Loveleen Tandan,especially for her finding of three kids who did the youngest part of the three central characters. In fact, Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail and Rubina Ali were actually found from the slums of Mumbai.
After winning a series of awards- five Critics’ Choice Awards, four Golden Globes, and seven BAFTA Awards, including Best Film-the big challenge for the film was to culminate with the ultimate triumph. And at last, Danny Boyle and his crew has successfully accomplished their task as it proved its true mettle on the D-day, sweeping away 8 Oscars.