Everyone seems to be trying to jump on the Slumdog bandwagon these days, after it shone at the Baftas, Academy Awards and at several other awards. The well-wishers were a-plenty, dime a dozen, but they don't have much of a news potential. So it is the not-so-well-wishers who try to be Smart Alec.
Amitabh Bacchan. I don't undestand what's wrong with him, and why he's not so gung-ho like rest of the Bollywood gushing about a movie made by a British in Mumbai and winning awards in LA and London... He was of the opinion that the Oscars should not be given so much of importance and attention by the Indians, since there are many good movies in India that don't need an Oscar to certify they are good. Hmph! Not much of a competitive lark, Big B.
I heard another guy challenging the choice of the jury. And there are many like him. They were like, "what did they see in Slumdog..., only slums, beggars, poverty! Better than that was the Marathi flick Shwas (Also Oscar nominated in foreign language category)". True enough. But after all it was a phirangi awards function, wasn't it? Not your national awards, where the marathi movie did win an award. Slumdog... was an out-and-out Bollywood-ish movie complete with the nautch-gaana and similar music. The movie also had a sensible script, some excellent cinematography, etc which can be found in western movies. For us, movies like Changeling and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button et al may be oh-so-different and a novelty. But for the western jury and public it's a regular thing, and such Slumdog... movies for them are oh-so-different, entertaining. It is the same phenomenon as the Caucasians yearning for a tan, and the wheatish, for a fairer skin: a fetish for the exotica.
A. R. Rahman's music is surreal! It is intricate, fresh and contemporary. He has so far never made a signature style of music and that is what so cool about it. Every score is totally different from the other. I wouldn't be surprised if they have an award named after him in the future.
The Freida girl is going places. Being a student of PR, I could see she did some excellent job at her public relations. Even though she was in only one-third of the film she's been prancing around like a lead actress pouting and posing for the shutterbugs in internationally designed style. Intelligent! She didn't take the stupid step of 'being open to bollywood offers' and fielding the amateurish Indian entertainment media who had dug out her not so pleasant past. Her sis said she was busy with a Woody Allen project in US and the opinionated motor-mouths like Shobha De did a good job of justifying and covering up for her (she dumped her fiancé or something of that sort). That took care of her image there. Moreover, being seen at a fashion show in Paris or Milan or on the cover page of international fashion magazine is way better than being seen on the same page of an entertainment column alongside tanushri data and tushar kapur. I hope she won't be a one-film wonder. I would like to see more of her.