November 27, 2008

Slumdog Millionaire = The Dark Knight

"Slumdog Millionaire" and "The Dark Knight" are two shining examples of movie magic at it's finest. "Slumdog Millionaire", the new film from Danny Boyle, is a brilliant and touching study of what effect hope and optimism can have on people's lives. "The Dark Knight" on the other hand is a masterful and terrifying study on what fear can do to a society and an individual's character. Yet while "The Dark Knight" is the product of eight years of the Bush Administration, "Slumdog" is a product of the hope that begin to seep into the world with the emergence of Barrack Obama.

Both films show the physical and cultural effects a society can have a person. Just as the Bruce Wayne story could not exist with the massive skyscrapers and colorful citizens of Gotham, Jamal from "Slumdog" would not be succeeding on the show if it wasn't for the slums. However, beyond the physical is the cultural. Batman exists because he thrives off the fear of the criminals of the city. Jamal answers questions on the show based off cultural experience, a hodge podge of almost every cultural aspect of India, from cricket to celebrity figures to mantras on it's flag.

And finally, both films are very traditional stories at heart. Jamal is noble "knight" driven by never ending love for his princess. He undergoes many trials on his quest, including a climax with the King (the millionaire host (why is he the king, cause he's got the loot ). Batman is a knight driven to save his kingdom, at great personal cost to himself. However, where one film shows the toils of being a hero and believing in good, the other film soars on the power of hope.


  1. You know, I was really discouraged when I read the "eight years of Bush, but a new era with Obama" stuff at the beginning of the blog. I am not sure how it relates to these movies, and wonder if it was necessary. No offense, I understand people are excited, but there is a time and a place for political talk; and it shouldn't be when reviewing movies... but enough about that. You should consider putting your own two cents (on the movies) on this review of The Dark Knight... it is interesting to see these things go back and forth (refreshing step away from politics)

  2. While comparing Slumdog to Obama may be a slight stretch (Although it works) the comparison to Bush is anything but. After watching the Dark Knight for the first time I came away thinking, among many things, about Bush and what his happened to the US. It's not hard to arrive at this line of thought after watching such a movie. A big reason why TDK did so amazingly well is because of its harsh look at our world today. Relevance and depth wrapped around entertainment is incredibly effective. It should be discussed and analyzed and that's exactly what this post is doing. It's not a review.