Slumdog Millionaire [Blu-ray] (Bilingual)
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Danny Boyle (Sunshine) directed this wildly energetic, Dickensian drama about the desultory life and times of an Indian boy whose bleak, formative experiences lead to an appearance on his country's version of "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" Jamal (played as a young man by Dev Patel) and his brother are orphaned as children, raising themselves in various slums and crime-ridden neighorhoods and falling in, for a while, with a monstrous gang exploiting children as beggars and prostitutes. Driven by his love for Latika (Freida Pinto), Jamal, while a teen, later goes on a journey to rescue her from the gang's clutches, only to lose her again to another oppressive fate as the lover of a notorious gangster. Running parallel with this dark yet irresistible adventure, told in flashback vignettes, is the almost inexplicable sight of Jamal winning every challenge on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?," a strong showing that leads to a vicious police interrogation. As Jamal explains how he knows the answer to every question on the show as the result of harsh events in his knockabout life, the chaos of his existence gains shape, perspective and soulfulness. The film's violence is offset by a mesmerizing exotica shot and edited with a great whoosh of vitality. Boyle successfully sells the story's most unlikely elements with nods to literary and cinematic conventions that touch an audience's heart more than its head. --Tom Keogh
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Top Customer Reviews
It looks great in places and weak in others. I think that was intentional.
Audio quality 5.0/5.0
Good when it needs to be.
This was a blind buy for me and I half expected to be trading it away, but it surprised me.
Some people will be put off because most of the cast is Indian; others might fear it's a musical.
Well, the cast is fantastic and there is only one song played and it's right at the end of the movie (a homage to Bollywood).
The story is quite simple, but it is done extremely well. I won't ruin the story for those of you that haven't seen it, but it is dramatic, emotional, and intelligent.
This movie won't be for everyone. Two scenes are quite disturbing, so be prepared.
It has plenty of humour to balance things out, and it definitely has a feel-good ending.
None of the actors were nominated for an Oscar, but that doesn't mean the acting was below par.
This film won eight Oscars despite not being nominated in the acting categories, and I think they were well deserved.
Danny Boyle has outdone himself.
The movie comes on a BD-50, with video as MPEG-4 AVC (28 mbps) that shows off the 2.35:1 original aspect ratio to good effect, and an incredible sounding 5.1 DTS-HD master audio that was as impressive to hear as the film was to watch. When they were necessary, the Hindi-to-English translations were subtle, coloured to match the scene and placed so as to avoid interfering with the view. That sort of attention to an otherwise small, and often overlooked, detail is remarkable.
The BD has plenty of special features, including a making-of featurette, deleted scenes, an exclusive short film "Manjha" (warning: the subject matter and language warrants an R rating for the short, too), music video, commentary with Danny Boyle and Dev Patel, a few previews, and a digital copy of the film on a second DVD.
Truly, this is a worthwhile addition to any Blu-ray collection. If you're debating this purchase, debate no longer.
Every stop I get to I'm clocking that game
Everyone's a winner, we're making our fame
Bonafide hustler making my name"
(M.I.A. "Paper Planes")
And so it goes - the backdrop of a Mumbai slum and a popular game show, mixed with a love story, a drama, the exotic melodies of A. R. Rahman and the unmistakable voice of M.I.A.
Short Attention Span Summary (SASS)
1. Boy from the slums grows up the hard way
2. He learns from his unforgettable experiences
3. Boy meets girl
4. Boy loses girl
5. Boy finds girl
6. Boy loses girl again
7. Boy finds girl
8. You guessed it!
9. Boy risks all to find girl again
10. He doesn't take "no" for a final answer
This storyline sounds simple, but it's told as a series of flashbacks that will touch your every emotion. When a former street hustler turned tea boy (Dev Patel) inexplicably makes it up the ladder of the Indian version of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" the suspicious host (Anil Kapoor) calls in the police, who proceed to extract the truth out of him in their own inimitable and sometimes shocking fashion.
His sad story is revealed piece by piece, with an explanation of how he knew the answers to all the questions leading up to the big one, and the 20 million rupees.
We learn however, that he's really after a much better prize.
Poverty, violence, religious intolerance, child abuse, betrayal and revenge are tempered somewhat by love, faith, hope, suspense, humor and music, and this exceedingly clever and well directed drama will have you laughing, crying, squirming and sometimes make you downright outraged.
This is one you MUST see, and then buy so you can see it again. Great movie, great casting, great music, great sets, great story - too many "greats" to state here.
This isn't one you should miss.
As for the movie, it's really great. I'm not a very good review writer... This movie has excellent cinematography; some of the shots of the slums and just the country in general are so breathtaking. The story is so touching, and the acting is very good. It's a must-see!
Anyway I just wanted to let you know about that website for Special Features issues. Good luck!
It turns out that Fox Searchlight plans on releasing DVD rental copies with NO SPECIAL FEATURES to video rental stores (a marketing ploy to force those who want the special features to go out and buy the DVD). However, it appears that they have screwed up and have released ALL DVDS INCLUDING THOSE FOR SALE TO RETAILERS with no special features as well.
IF I WERE YOU I WOULD WAIT UNTIL THIS PROBLEM IS FIXED BEFORE BUYING THE DVD.
Most recent customer reviews
A great movie! I spent several weeks in India and I can honestly say this movie depicts actual everyday life in Mumbai and many other major cities throughout the country. Read morePublished 15 months ago by LInda B.
I don't think this movie lived up to all the hype that was going on about it when it first came out. The best thing about it is the music at the end.Published on Dec 5 2013 by Aline M Carley
I really enjoyed this movie, I don't know how true to life it is but the poverty portrayed was aweful.Published on Nov. 6 2013 by jandy
A mix of the best of Bollywood, Hollywood and indie films, made
by a the protean Danny Boyle who seems always unafraid
to tackle new genres and forms. Read more