Reactions to Slumdog Millionaire in India as well as among Indians in USA has been very diverse. SOme people are very upset about the movies, while others are ecstatic. For example in an article author says:
Make no mistake, I love my country potholes, corruption hell holes and all, Oscar or no Oscar. But the Slumdog debate creates a stink of a different kind. One of low tolerance for things harsh and real. Appears to me that some of us would rather see the happy-ending movies with crappy humor and not be reminded of the graver issues that exist. Are we upset that the film does not provide yet another entertaining escape from the travails of our daily life? Perhaps.
Today at one Indian Party in San Diego, the topic was the same and reactions of people were same — why do they have to show the negative side of India? — to — It was a great movie.
I find it amusing that people make a normal movie a matter of patriotism or of ‘represnting India’. I believe that India is much more than slums or the TajMahal. Like most countries — particularly large and old countries, then have many perspectives and many ‘personalities’. If the discussion is unrealistic, then debate could be about fact or fiction. But if people ask ‘why the underbelly’ — then they have already agreed that the depiction is realistic so there is no discussion. HOw a director views a real situation and depicts it in his storytelling is his business and will determine how good is his story. In this case, at least a group decided that the story is great — so to me — the debate ends there.
But then everybody is entitled to their opinions and if some people want to get upset about such things, they have as much right to be upset as those who are happy about it.