Today I took Shannon on a mommy/daughter date and saw “Slumdog Millionaire”.
Took me by surprise; I had heard that it was a ‘love story’, and that therein was the appeal. So I expected the girl + boy story to be the focal point. But that aspect seemed almost secondary; the love story was as much about brothers and friends as the romance you might expect to find in a popular two hour film. The relationship between the brothers was powerful. And powerful may be a rather anemic word. I was completely captivated.
Sarah went to see it later today with friends and Twittered afterward, “I am paralyzed.” I think that’s a good word for it.
It’s not unusual for me to enjoy a movie and encourage other people to go see it. But there was something so visceral about this film…so deeply moving…it compels me to want to insist that everyone in the universe go to see it.
Reflecting on it a bit, I’m really not quite sure what the appeal is. Perhaps, more than anything, my western, American, comfortable heart was shattered by the vivid depictions of life in the slums of India. And because the poverty, the filth, the unbelievably desperate conditions were barely nodded at – simply a part of a very real, authentic story – the impact of how two brothers grew up in Mumbai is driven home with a fierce and desperate power. It is inescapable.
I was so moved, on so many levels. It was way beyond what I expected. It is a movie I want to watch again and again and again.
I suggest you catch it in a theatre, where you can be transported to Mumbai and experience the intensity of this film in the dark. Because, in spite of the setting of the story, it’s a tale of the triumph of human spirit, and love, and right. In the midst of the mess, it truly is a happy story. And I think maybe that’s what resonates most of all, what my occupied spirit completely understands.
In the midst of great brokeness, there is true joy.