“Slumdog millionaire distorts Indian reality, conceals India’s prosperity” screams a front-paged headline in the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) mouthpiece Organiser.
With this, the movie now has a new detractor who, surprisingly, has also slammed Indian music director A.R. Rahman for his “bad” music score.
“The whole build-up of hype around the movie reminds one of the new-found appreciation of Miss World and Miss Universe organisers towards Indian beauty after our economy was liberalized to allow international cosmetic giants to sell their wares in India,” says the report in Organiser. The idea is that Indian squalor sells in the western world, and spins money.
“The story… encapsulates almost all the dirt and squalor that one could conjure up in the slums of Mumbai. Eyes being gouged out of young children who are introduced into beggary, children dipping into sewage tanks and garrulous prostitutes in dingy rooms lining both sides of narrow lanes all make up for picture postcards of Mumbai slums,” the RSS mouthpiece says.
Interestingly, the criticism is not directed at Danny Boyle alone. Even India’s own star music director A.R. Rahman has not been spared. “Needless to say, Allah Rakha Rahman’s music is as bad as it gets,” says the story. While agreeing that Rahman has done a better job in the past, it adds sarcastically that he seemed to be in a hurry to pander to his “white” team this time. “This time the pressure of churning out a quickie for a white production team took an obvious toll on the music director’s delivery.”
The article says the movie gets everything wrong. “The direction and the story narration is as melodramatic as the breast-beating in Tamil movies of the 80s”. This statement, however, may anger many in South India.
To show just how “bad” Slumdog Millionaire is, the report compares it unfavorably with Changeling, a Clint Eastwood release, stating that the latter is the best Hollywood movie of the year, and “people in the Third World would certainly identify with it much more than (with) Slumdog Millionaire”.