Write an essay on slumdog millionaire.
The film ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ has been one of the most well-known and famous movies which has won the hearts of millions watching it. Its film-maker Danny Boyle has made this movie with an absolute out of the box thought and concept. The film has portrayed the life of the slum dwellers of Mumbai in India. The misery and the tough phases that the slum dwellers have to face in their everyday life have been well-displayed through the movie. The concept of the movie can be considered to be one of the most unique concepts of which nobody could have thought about earlier in the film-making domain. But it cannot be said that everything that has been shown in the film is not good or bad. It needs critical analysis about the main theme of the movie.
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Critique offered to the film ‘Slumdog Millionaire’:
The film can be offered the critique of being modernity as the film portrays the transformation of a slum boy who has faced the ordeals of poverty and yet has transformed him to a mature boy as he grow older. The city of Mumbai has also grown over the years and many things have been changed. The social structure of India has been well-displayed in the film. As Jamal gets older he gains many experiences and from there he has taken many lessons which have been proved to be highly significant. The discrimination between the upper and poor class in the society has also been portrayed nicely. The rich people making fun of the poor ones has been shown through the conducts of character of Prem who was the host of the then biggest reality show in India. He has been seen to be criticising and making fun of Jamal as he was a slum boy. Social mobility has been shown in the film through the achievements of Jamal who had to overcome huge hurdles yet he was never gave up and had faith on him. He had ultimately succeeded the show and had proved everyone a lesson. He had to face many obstacles to find out his childhood friend. Latika. The film shows the changes in the social and economic factors through the different incidents and events. The film carries a message and lesson for all who used to look down to the unprivileged section of the society. The film has been able to represent the poverty and the misery in the life of the slum dwellers and their sufferings from clutches of issues. It can be said that this British movie has been able to portray the real representation of the absolute different and unrevealed feature of India where the economic growth has been taking place rapidly in the last few years.
Unexplored areas in the film’s portrayal of urban poverty in India and broadly in Global South:
There have been some areas in the portrayal of the film ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ where the urban poverty has been shown but the reasons of their developments have not been shown. The concept of self-interest and self-help has been unexplored. The urban areas of the Global South are experiencing rapid economic growth yet the slums could not be stopped from being growing. The book of ‘Planet of Slum’ written by Mike Davis can be considered to be an excellent portrayal of the urban poverty which is now one of the major issues across the global south. The economy is developing as a faster pace even beyond. But there are some places in the global south where the misery of the slum dwellers’ life can be observed. They are unprivileged (Marx, Stoker and Suri, 2013). They have for some reasons shifted and settled in the urban areas, might be because of the employment opportunities but they have to face regular fights to survive (Tsujita, 2009). The author has delved into the major factors which have catapulted the urban poverty to great extent. The reason behind the movement of the people from the rural areas to the urban areas is the globalization which has opened avenues for earning. If the economy has developed remarkably then what can be the reason behind the increasing numbers of slums in the southern part. There can be no specific reason behind such issues but it can be said that capitalization or globalization has contributed largely to this issue. The film, ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ has represented the urban poverty of India. The growth in the population can again be considered to be major driver of economic downturn or economic issues. Davis wants to convey that because of self-interest and selfish approaches of the wealthy economies the slums grow and develop (Davis, 2004).
The urban poverty gets increased and standing in the current scenario it can be assumed that there would be more slums in the near future in the global south. The pessimistic approach of the author has been portrayed through his books but there is a truth in his message. He also mentions that if the slums and urban poverty keep on increasing then there will be a time when the entire population would be facing the curse of increased social challenges like crimes, diseases and poverty (Davis, 2007). While describing ‘Illusion of Self-Help’, Davis says that the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund could have taken some positive steps to improve the situations of the third-world economies where the urban poverty is much prominent. The concept that the slum dwellers could take care of themselves is nothing but an illusion. It can be said that wealthy economies develop poverty for their own good. This message has also been shown in the film (Mitlin and Satterthwaite, 2013).
The essay has been written with the aim of answering some of the important and relevant questions which automatically get developed in the minds. Critical analysis can be done on the problematic representation of the slum in the film or the on the unexplored areas in the portrayal of the urban poverty in India or in the south as a whole. The article and the book of Mike Davis both named as Planet of Slum have been found to needful reading to support the answers.
Davis, M. (2004) 'Planet of Slums Urban Involution and the Informal Proletariat', New Left Review, pp. 5-34.
Davis, M. (2007) 'Illusion of Self-Help', Illusion of Self-Help chapter 4, pp. 70-94.
Marx, B., Stoker, T. and Suri, T. (2013) 'The Economics of Slums in the Developing World', Journal of Economic Perspectives—Volume 27, vol. 27, pp. 187–210.
Mitlin, D. and Satterthwaite, D. (2013) Urban Poverty in the Global South: Scale and Nature, Routledge.
Tsujita, Y. (2009) 'Deprivation of Education: A Study of Slum Children in Delhi, India', Background paper prepared for the Education for All Global Monitoring Report 2010 , pp. 1-25.