Monday, March 09, 2009

Slumdog Millionare

I have posted in awhile, not because I've been particularly ill, mostly because I've been trying to get out more and do some things.  One of those things was to go see Slumdog Millionaire on Saturday.  I don't want to write a review or anything, it won awards and you can read any amount of reviews online.

I did want to write about my thoughts since seeing the movie.  It's been over a year since I visited India, and obviously the movie brought back a lot of memories and emotions.  As soon as the film began and I saw the children of India, I began to cry.  When I encountered children in India, they were some of the most life affirming moments for me.
They were excited to meet Americans and practice their English on us.  They were also incredibly eager to have their pictures taken and were always flirting.  Several children actually told me I was beautiful, no doubt they were looking for a couple rupees in return, but I will never forget the experience.

So these children in the film, playing cricket in the opening scene made me weep.  It made me recall the lives of the children we met in India, in all the different villages and cities that we visited.  And throughout the movie, I had one thought.  

Now that we've caught a glimpse of India, what children's lives can sometimes be like, what do we do with it?  What do we do with Slumdog Millionaire?  We can give it awards, and sing it's praises, but does that contribute anything to the people it's about, ultimately the children in India.  At the end of the movie Jamal, the newly minted millionaire, is only 18.  This is still a child by American standards. 

India has gotten a lot of attention since this film, and the Indian government has taken some steps to better the lives of the child stars of the movie.  But does this ultimately help.

We can take a mission trip to India, play with the children, build them a better home, but does this prevent it from being torn down.  Can we prevent violence in the street, can we prevent sickness that overcomes those in poverty?  

What do we do with this film??  It's more than just a movie, but what is it?

It's been nagging at me since I returned from India, what can I do, if anything to return the favor of what the people of India gave me when I visited?  I'm not sure there is an answer.


Pastor Jim said...


You ask some excellent questions which, for me, reminds me of the primary question of Holy Week, what do we do with this Jesus? Perhaps the answer to your questions and mine are the same.

Chrissy Joy said...

They certainly can't be put in a box, I know that.

Penny Reid said...

In answer to what you can do, you can share your wonderful photos of the children of India. In this way it becomes real to us and not some vague concept of starving children in some far off land. Thank you for what you are doing. hugs

Renee said...

This post is helpful in reminding us of poverty and the millions of children in need of being fed and clothed and prayed for.

Dhiroj said...

I'm not familiar with the movie, but I just got back from a spring break mission trip to a childrens home in El Salvador. (Look for pictures posted on Facebook.) Your questions are good. I plan to make a difference by applying to return again next year or looking for away for my whole family to go. Our team's help at the home and interaction with the children was very much appreciated.