Slumdog Millionaire

"Have you seen ‘Slumdog Millionaire’?"

My shrink was making a point re money.  Not having seen the film, I didn’t completely understand it. But when I opened the newspaper and found out everybody was handicapping the flick as number one in the Oscar race, I wanted to see it.

I don’t know how you rise above the fray in today’s overhyped, over-marketed world.  Personally, I ignore the movie hype.  I wait for someone to tell me something is truly great.  Which happens so rarely these days.  Why go see the new James Bond flick?  Meet the new boss, not quite as good as the old boss, never mind Sean Connery.  They make these films for a worldwide audience.  The executives are in control, they only work if you’re a teenager and you want to get out of the house and neck or you’re a parent who wants a date night with your spouse as you pay an exorbitant fee to the babysitter.

Actually, I did see a great film two weeks ago, " Stranded: I Have Come from a Plane That Crashed on the Mountains".  It’s the story of the 1972 Uruguayan soccer team plane crash.  You know, where they ate their brethren to survive.  You might think you know the story, but this documentary film features all sixteen survivors.  Absolutely riveting.  But you’ll have to wait for the DVD.  The flick only played for a week at the Nuart.

Then a friend who goes to see everything, since his wife abandoned him, told me I had to see "Rachel Getting Married".  I should have known when I saw the writing credit as somebody "Lumet". This was an inside job.  Demme can be great, but this was all artifice in search of a reasonable plot. I love this family drama shit, but I felt ripped off.

But we had to get out of the house, we were going stir-crazy inside with the windows shut, avoiding last weekend’s smoke.

I told myself I would never go to the movies again.  But then my shrink piqued my curiosity and the critical response lit a fire.  I had to go the very next day!

We went online.  We barely found two reasonable seats at the ArcLight.

And demand was so heavy that they bumped "Twilight" into a smaller theatre and played "Slumdog Millionaire" in their largest viewing space.

And every seat was taken.  And the lights went down and…

An American studio can’t make a movie like this.  Maybe that’s why it took both Fox and Time Warner to release it.  We can’t handle shit like this in America.  We’re a nation of Sarah Palins, we don’t give a shit about the rest of the world, we don’t go there and we don’t want to hear about it.

But if you want to see how the other half lives…

Maybe you don’t, but the sheer poverty displayed in "Slumdog Millionaire" will blow your mind. Keep you watching.

And Danny Boyle’s tricks work.  All the weird camera angles.  Too often in today’s films the image surpasses the story.  But what we have here is complete harmony, excellence!

I care about greatness.  I don’t want to be charitable, cut your project a break.  I want to go experience art and clap at the end, not being able to hold myself back.

That’s how I felt watching "Slumdog Millionaire".

I was gonna detail the plot, but I’ll just let you go cold, like we did.  Hang in there, until the very end. Watch the credits.  You’ll be fulfilled.

You can read the grosses and be out of the loop.

Or you can listen to me and have the ride of your life.

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