Scrolling Headlines:

UMass professor wins big on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 23, 2017

SGA president selects new vice president -

January 23, 2017

UMass women’s basketball blows 15 point fourth quarter lead, loses in double overtime to George Washington -

January 23, 2017

UMass club hockey falls to NYU 3-2 in first game back from vacation -

January 23, 2017

Cyr: Expectations for UMass men’s basketball remain consistent throughout 2016-17 season -

January 23, 2017

The death penalty is not the answer -

January 23, 2017

Donald Trump is gutting journalism with his Twitter -

January 23, 2017

Winter break’s most overlooked releases -

January 23, 2017

Hardly anything in ‘Rogue One’ scores a direct hit -

January 23, 2017

Nineteen turnovers sink UMass men’s basketball in loss to Fordham Saturday -

January 21, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls to Fordham behind strong defensive effort by the Rams -

January 21, 2017

UMass hockey can’t take advantage of strong start in 6-1 loss to Boston College -

January 21, 2017

High-powered Eagles soar past UMass -

January 21, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers disappointing loss to St. Bonaventure at Mullins Center Thursday -

January 19, 2017

REPORT: Tom Masella out as defensive coordinator for UMass football -

January 19, 2017

Zach Lewis, bench carry UMass men’s basketball in win over St. Joe’s -

January 19, 2017

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

I must disagree with Shayna, it happens

Shayna Murphy reviewed Danny Boyle’s new film Slumdog Millionaire” earlier this week. And I must disagree with her “B” rating. Now I know our rating system is flawed (which one isn’t?) and it is completely subjective. But I must give Boyle’s new film an “A” on our rector scale.

The film breaks so many conventions of the common love story. Yes, all the cliches are there. But what Boyle does with them is what separates this film apart from others in recent years. He uses the conventions as a back-drop for the slums of India and the story of a man in search of love, while trying to survive the dangers of being a homeless boy walking the streets of the city of Mumbai.

He must survive gangsters, his own brother, tourists, police and rioters. Jamal Malik makes it out alive. He makes it out with only minor scars, until his love Latika is introduced.

When Latika comes into the story, being introduced as the unknown “Third Musketeer,” the movie moves from survival to love and what humans will go through to live life with another person.

The movie moves its narrative through the Indian version of “Who Wants to be a Millionaire.” Jamal grinds his way through the questions to the grand prize of 20 million Rupees. The scummy host cannot believe that a “slumdog” is answering the questions, and not cheating.

He in turn has Jamal tortured after a taping of the show to find his own answers.

Jamal has a simple answer for his torturers: he lived all the questions and answers. That is the narrative. Simple. We jump back and forth from game show to life.

But what Boyle does with the narrative is genuine. He uses the camera as another story-teller, never using it as another fly on the way. The chase sequences are marvelous. Like in “28 Days Later” and other Boyle films, he uses shadows, close-ups, light and pitch-perfect music to score the chases making them more alive than a real chase.

What Boyle does to convey the heat and the cramped spaces of Mumbia and the slums of India i highlighting yellow and white through filters. Making the colors more permanent, giving the eyes something to focus on and feel.

The use of subtitles is one special thing that Boyle does in the film. He gives a new look into how we see a foreign film, and how we read subtitles. The few subtitles used are never placed off the screen, but rather they are in the picture, placed gently inside open space in each shot. This stylization doesn’t allow the viewer to ever look away from the action. It is a small thing to rave about, but it does enhance the film’s experience.

Go see “Slumdog Millionaire.” December 12 at Amherst Cinema. And check out Ty Burr’s Review. Here is a Q & A with the star Dev Patel. And another with Mr. Boyle himself.

4 Responses to “I must disagree with Shayna, it happens”
  1. Shayna_Murphy says:

    ouch. burned in the title and everything.


  2. Kevin Koczwara says:

    I’m sorry Shayna.
    It works best to do it that way.
    You burn me all the time.
    But it is my opinion, this still needs editing, I wrote it before our section meeting.

  3. Shayna_Murphy says:

    i think it’s good, though. you make mention of some things i totally spaced on, like the way boyle used the camera, letting it dart around and follow the action naturally.

  4. newenglandnoir says:

    Can’t wait to see this.

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