Scrolling Headlines:

Three weeks in, and two UMass fraternities under suspension -

September 23, 2017

UMPD crime alert informs campus of motor vehicle theft near Rudd Field Sept. 17 -

September 22, 2017

‘It’ has revitalized the modern monster movie -

September 21, 2017

UMass Republicans feel ostracized in political climate -

September 21, 2017

Irma hits Cuba, putting rain cloud over students’ study abroad plans -

September 21, 2017

UMass football travels to Tennessee for its first Power Five game of 2017 -

September 21, 2017

UMass women’s soccer looks ahead to Thursday matchup with Davidson -

September 21, 2017

Perussault and the Minutewomen are ready for the start of A-10 play -

September 21, 2017

Behind the “Hate has no home at UMass” campaign -

September 21, 2017

A-10 field hockey notebook: VCU, St. Joseph’s, and Lock Haven dominate -

September 21, 2017

Video games as art -

September 21, 2017

A-10 men’s soccer notebook: Davidson falls to Virginia Tech in Blacksburg -

September 21, 2017

Glazed and confused: what youth should know about vaping -

September 21, 2017

Trust the professors, and trust the system -

September 21, 2017

Beauty that exists all around you and how to notice it -

September 21, 2017

Student death reported to the University Sept. 19 -

September 20, 2017

Domestic violence and experience of Muslim women lecture kicks off seminar series -

September 20, 2017

Students demand bathroom accountability -

September 20, 2017

Small trashcan fire broke out in Kennedy Hall -

September 20, 2017

Immigration policy discussed in public teach-in -

September 20, 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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