Monday, February 23, 2009

Jai Ho !!

Yesterday was India's day at the Oscars and what a night it was. Even though the movie, Slumdog Millionaire, is a British movie it is an Indian movie by heart. Danny Boyle gets lot of credit for bringing India to the Oscars but it was the slum kids from Mumbai that stole everyone's heart. It was great to see Azharuddin and Rubina, both of whom come from the dirtiest of slums in Mumbai dressed up all in Tuxedos and Formal attire.

The best part of the Oscars was that it showcased the diversity of India like never before. Allah Rakha Rahman - a converted muslim, Gulzar Saab - a sikh (his real name is Sampooran Singh Kalra), Resal Pookutty - a muslim from one of the communist state Kerela, all won the awards as Indians. Apart from the winners, the cast of Slumdog Millionaire represented a Bollywood star, Anil Kapoor, an aspiring model Frieda Pinto, a second generation NRI Dev Patel, a brilliant actor Irfan Khan and then those kids from all strata of the Indian society.

This movie or the Oscars will not change lives of slum kids all across the country but it was heart-warming to watch them celebrating the awards like they won it themselves. As far as controversy surrounding the movie, like calling the slum-dwellers dogs, one only need to go into one of these slums to see that these people live worse than dogs. In an interview of one of the child-artist, Azharuddin, he said, "Yeh kutte ke zindagi nahin jeene hain maine". But the movie doesn't compare these kids to dogs even though it calls them slumdogs. In one of the scene from the movie, after rioting when the brothers lose their mother and have taken refuge in a discarded pipe, Jamal Malik the film's protaganist asks an orphan girl Latika to come under the shade. It showed the human side of slum kids in a dog eats dog world.

Its no coincidence that the movie resonated with people around the world during the biggest recession of our times. The movie is about a triumph of an underdog and all of us are in some ways underdogs during these hard times. We all want to come out triumphant and aspire to become millionaires if not become one.

Slumdog Millionaire was not the only movie that made us proud. A small documentary about a girl from small Indian village with cleft lip, Pinki, called Smile Pinki also bought smiles to billions of people from around the world. It showcased how people like Pankaj, a social worker who travels from one village to another to find kids like Pinki with cleft lips and bring them to Varanasi to provide free surgery, only to bring a smile on their faces.

Jai Ho to all the Pinkis, Azharuddins and Rubinas of the world !!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jai ho!! :))
btw, can u check @ Resal pookutty being "muslim" I think he is a Hindu. Not that it matters much but since you brought up this point in your blog


6:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Finally !! I felt proud to see India getting due recognition..though I personally feel there have been better movies, more deserving than Slumdog..but this is just the beginning.. hope to get many more oscars

6:54 AM  
Blogger Rain Girl said...

truly! jai ho! am specially glad about the oscar to gulzar.. he deserved. :)

11:37 PM  
Blogger Mrinalini said...

Yay!! to AR Rahman and Pookutty and Gulzar, it still doesnt sink in :D
And I agree with u, it is a great triumph no matter who or what slams the movie...the essence of the movie comes out as that of victory in adversity, and we should be inspired of that, not slam it for showing poverty...
anyway, congrats fellow Indian :D

4:12 AM  
Blogger Khamakha said...

oh yeah....very well said..a truely amazing nite:) Jai ho!

11:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

so glad they won
i wish their critics in India just shut up

1:14 PM  
Blogger Colors said...

Well said Ricky! In my opinion Slumdog deserves all the Oscars that it won. Benjamin Button was a strong contender for Best Picture, but I felt its ending was kinda botched up. It is an awesome pride for all Indians, so hopefully this shud shut up all the critics.
"Jai Ho!" might not be Rahman's best, but this is the first one to have caught world-wide attention and recognition...and it also won the Oscar! What more can one say? I am sure now he'll get more international projects which will help spread his popularity even more.
And the kids...they are so adorable (except the middle Salim - did you see him pose in all the Oscar pics? LOL!).

PS-> @Moonie - Resul is a muslim.

2:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I didn't know Gulzar's real name is Sampooran Singh Kalra..thnx :)

I am dying to watch Smile Pinki

11:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The real hero of the films the kids - specially those three.

I read the book because he is.......... by Megna two years back and since then I thought to make a post on Gulzar and including many things, to mention his real name..... Before then, I didn't know his real name and thought maybe many of my readers also didn't know. :-)

What to say about winning awards in Oscar. Being Asian, I'm also proud and saying "Jai Ho!"

2:36 AM  
Blogger MoonStruck Tempest said...

The Oscars were probably the most amazing awards show I have ever seen. I dont think I need to explain how amazing it was for me to see AR Rahman on that stage and along with him, like you rightly said, it was great to see so many Indian faces on the Oscars for the first time ever. Fun thing is ARR's music is truly everywhere in the US.

12:40 PM  
Blogger Pinks said...

yes indeed loved watching the u think the documentary has any connection with me :D

2:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


12:25 AM  
Blogger sid said...

Personally, I hate the movie as it has been shown in a negative spirit and by watching it, I find all the hype attached to movie is unjustified.
I have to face many questions by ppl of other country including my boss on the problems shown in this movie.

It shows the problems which are now under the scanner and many NGOs and govt. arms are forced to keep such activities under check.

I have seen beggars in almost all the countries I visited apart from Swiss but they dont highlight the problems only.

Its not ur write up , its just the movie that I have personal issues with else I like ur blog and do read all the posts :)))

5:59 PM  

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