DVD Review Slumdog Millionaire
Directed by: Danny Boyle Cast: Dev Patel, Freida Pinto, Madhur Mittal, Irfan Khan Running Time: 1 hr 50 mins Rating: PG-13 Release date: 3/31/09
Plot: It’s the potential of rags to riches as a slumdog (poor Indian boy played by Patel) must answer questions while on India’s own “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.” Each question somehow relates to a moment in his past mainly involving his older brother (Mittal) and a girl (Pinto) who he believes is the love of his life.
Who’s It For? This is the most accessible, mainstream Indian film (yes, it’s Indian even though a English man directed it) I have seen. The only thing Bollywood about it is all the vibrant colors and a slightly odd musical number at the end of the film. And even though it’s about kids, it’s not for kids.
Movie: Boyle delivers a fantastic adaptation of Vikas Swarup’s novel. It doesn’t take long before you are completely hooked on Jamal’s adventure. For me, it started with a disgusting and hilarious splash into … well, I’ll let you find out … in order to retrieve an autograph from a famous Indian action star. There’s a little something for everyone from this film which seems to tell you the ending right from the beginning. Movie Score: 8/10
Commentary by director Danny Boyle and actor Dev Patel: It's a pretty lively back and forth between the two, but Boyle is clearly running the show on this extra. We find out things like the multiple choice question on the screen in the beginning wasn't originally in the film. Not only that, Boyle actually had to get permission to use subtitles, as the original contract for the movie was for English only. And if you want to know what a young Jamal actually jumped into from the outhouse ... chocolate and peanut butter. Boyle explains he wants to lick that boy, perhaps that's too much information.
Deleted Scenes: There are 33 mins of clips that didn't make the final product. It actually makes the film clearer, but in that "too obvious" kind of way. We get more from the talk show host being form the slums, Latika gets her yellow dress, and there's a completely different ending that doesn't leave the same impact.
Slumdog Cutdown: Ever wanted to experience the film in three minutes? Now's your chance.
Other Extras Commentary by producer Christian Colson and writer Simon Beaufoy Slumdog Dreams: Danny Boyle & The Making of Slumdog Millionaire
Extras Score: 7/10
All of the dots fit together very nicely and this journey is one I would take again in a second ... That's what I said in my film review of Slumdog. But there's a hint of a magic trick with this movie. Once you see it again, once you see the behind the scenes, and the deleted footage ... the mystery and wonder doesn't have the same shine. Don't get me wrong, it deserved the best picture, but Slumdog Millionaire has now become one of those films that I recommend you see once, and remember it for the beauty and mystery and magic that it created for you.
Final Score: 7/10