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Slumdog millionaire Essay

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    Brainstorm in class.
    1. What do you know about India? This includes geographical data (population, cities, climate, economic and social conditions), and other aspects like culture, language and Western impressions of the country. Write down a list of what you think India is like, you will return to this list at the end of the exercises below.

    In my life I learn a little about India:
    About population, I know that India is the second most populous in the world. Its president is Pranab Mukherjee. India has 28 cities and its principal city is Bombay, it is localized in the State of Maharashtra. India has four seasons such as: winter, summer, monsoon and fall. India is one of the countries that has a fast growth, the agricultural sector and the industry sector represents the economy of India. India is an overcrowded country.

    A key data about India’s culture is the marriage, this is planned by the boss of the family, the women can be married since 18 age but they can’t be separated. India has four the most important religions in the world, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. India suffers problems with a high level of poverty, illiteracy, disease and malnutrition. India has 30 languages and 2000 dialects.

    The Hindi and the English are the official language in the India.

    2. Find out about the television show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Discuss in class:

    What is your opinion of the show?
    My personal opinion about the show, Who wants to be a millionaire, is that you don’t need many years of study in an expensive university or school, We think that the life teaches you through the experience.

    What values do you think this show promotes?
    Who wants to be a millionaire, teaches you many things but I think that the
    most important is that you have to fight to get your things it means if you want something you have to do the right to achieve.

    What do you think about the global reach of this show?

    Task 1 – The first ten minutes
    Watch the first ten minutes of the film in two segments of about five minutes each. [The first segment ends when the tortured Jamal says “I knew the answers” and the second segment then begins with young boys (one of them the young Jamal) playing cricket on an airfield and ends when the policeman starts to play the video of the television show.] After watching these two segments, sit in groups of four and discuss the following points. One of you writes down your conclusions, and then the whole class discusses the same points.

    Segment 1 – Comprehension

    1) The film opens with Jamal in an interrogation room. How does the policeman try to irritate him? How does Jamal react? The police tries to irritate Jamal give him an electro beat with the propose that he confess the true, the police thinks that Jamal cheated because nobody can answer the question neither teachers nor doctors or lawyers know the answers.

    Segment 1 – Interpretation

    1) What do you think “It is written” might suggest?
    We think that all refers to Jamal it means that he knows all the answers; it’s written that he knows all because the majority of the questions are about his experience of life.

    2) When Jamal tells Prem (the host of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?) what he does for a living, Prem encourages a reaction from the audience by laughingly calling Jamal a chai-wallah (tea-maker; a wallah is one who performs a specific task). Would you expect a host to encourage such a reaction from the audience in a Western culture’s version of the show? What
    might this suggest about Indian culture?

    3) What effect is created by the tight editing of the contrasts between Jamal’s face on the show and in the police interrogation? All the time Jamal had a worried face, when he knew the answers he only did a gesture of laughter, in the police interrogation he didn’t know why the officer was blaming him. But he had clear that he didn’t cheat.

    Segment 2 – Comprehension

    1) How are we shown the title of the film?
    In our personal opinion, We think that the tittle of the film refers to a low class boy that can win a big award only knowing and living a little about the real world, he had to fight to achieve him dreams and he teaches our that is doesn’t necessary be a doctor, a professor the only thing that teaches you about the life is the experience.

    2) What are the boys (Salim and Jamal) doing at the start of this segment? They are playing baseball with a big number of children in a restricted area.

    3) Why are they being chased?
    Because they are playing in a restricted area and they don’t pay attention to the guards, they have to escape because the guards want to catch them.

    4) Where do they end up?
    They run to find them mother.

    5) What is the policeman’s reaction when he has to let the mother take hold of the boys? He has an impulsive reaction because he wants to catch the kids and he can´t.
    6) Where do the boys end up at the end of this segment?
    They end at school.

    7) What two character names from a book does the teacher call Salim and Jamal? The teacher calls them “athos and porthos”.

    Segment 2 – Interpretation

    1) What does the high-five shared by the two brothers as they run away suggest? Jamal and Salim more than brother, they are friends, when they have the high-five it´s means a gesture of complicity.

    2) What is the effect of all the quick shots of the setting as the boys run away? We think that one of the purposes of the movie is show us is the real life and the real world, how do they live? Where do they live? How many people live there?

    3) What is the effect of showing the lazy dog while the boys are running? We think that in India and the people who live there, is normal that all days happen something, is normal that the police fight against the society.

    4) What effect does the music add to this segment?
    We think that the only purpose of the music in all the movies is added some of weft and mystery of the scenes.

    Writing and Discussion

    1) Make a plot line (like a time line) to summarise what you have learnt about the story so far and the scenes you have been shown in these two segments.

    2) Using your plot line, discuss the following with a partner: Are you confused by anything? Has the director succeeded in capturing your interest? Do you want to see more?

    Now watch the whole film and work on the tasks below. Tasks 2–5 and 8 should be done in small groups. Task 2 – Discussion (adjectives)

    1) Choose three adjectives from the list below that you feel best describe your impressions of the film and explain to the rest of the group why you
    have chosen them.

    colorful – depressing – uplifting – disjointed – up-tempo – shocking – confusing – harsh – negative – heart-warming simplistic – realistic – unrealistic – sentimental – stark – exhilarating – romantic – stereotypical – feel-good – overwhelming – revealing – heartbreaking

    We are going to explain each one:
    1. REALISTIC: We have to see beyond of that surround us, we have to be realistic because the world is changing and we have to take advantage of each day. 2. STARK: We understand stark like a something rude, we refer to the rude life that Jamal has to live. 3. Heartbreaking: We feel that when Jamal has to answers the questions.

    Task 3 – Discussion (contrasts)

    One critic described the film as a series of contrasts. At the start of the film we saw, for example, the contrast between Jamal being asked questions by the host of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire and the officer brutally interrogating him at the police station. Other contrasts may be found between the two brothers Salim and Jamal. Find some of these as well as other examples of contrasts in the film and discuss their effect on the development of the film. One of the most important contrasts that you can see in the movie is obviously when Jamal is brutally interrogating but we think that other important factor about the movie is his love by Latika, he has to fight by his love and it contrast is one of the most interesting because Jamal and Salim have to do many things by salve their life.

    Discuss the following:
    1) What, in your opinion, is the main message of the film? Does the film make a strong statement? Slumdog Millionaire is about poverty and low class people in India who live in colonies called, “Slums”. The movie shows how poverty affects certain groups of people and how a person came from complete poverty and prejudice to the top of his social class. The central theme of
    the movie is a mix of discrimination, racism, and poverty. In the other hand, it is a rather rare film, which mixes touches of humor with reality and tragedy. The film makes a strong statement because it reflex about the lives of millions of children in countries of the third world, people who want to take advantage of them and the desire to get out of that life and live a dignified Street, although it is so complicated that it can only happen if you get the lottery or similar or if you are appropriate for some rich. In conclusion, the movie was very good, because it showed India’s dark but unfortunately real side, and how people move on to get out of this side. 2) After your discussions, jot down key words that summarize your opinion of the film. KEY WORDS!


    The young Jamal, Latika and Salim start out as “outsiders” in society. Talk about what makes them outsiders. What perils do they face because of their outsider status? What are the life choices each of them makes to escape their “outsider” roles? Do they have to make any difficult decisions? The story of Jamal is the modern India. Raised in the suburbs of Bombay, when a child was murdered his mother in a religious revolt. Jamal was in complete solitude, surviving as he could by the streets next to Salim, his older brother, and Latika, an orphan whom Jamal ends up caring for and, over the years, loving. The childhood of picaresque of Jamal, in the poorest areas of the city, will not impair their natural goodness. However, his brother Salim is thirsty of wealth and power. Tensions and rivalries between them
    intensified as they grew up and became young adults, until a betrayal just forcing the separation of the three friends, and Jamal loses Latika, just at the time in that he realizes that is really in love with her. Their lives as outsiders was difficult, they survived looking for things in the trash, asking for alms; . Some time later, 2 kids were earned life cheating tourists, and also stole them all this to survive. Jamal, Salim and Latika survive as best they can to situations in which are involved, one of the situations hard for them is the adults that they kidnap them to force them to borrow money, in addition to the difficulties to get accommodation or food, and own rivalry between Jamal and salim as brothers later, 2 children were gained life deceiving tourists, and also stole them all this to survive faced with a mobster who used children to ask for alms, and so cause greater impact, often incapacitating leaving them blind, here Salim makes a difficult decision in which his brother’s life is in danger, and fortunately the chooses to save his brother and so the two manage to escape but Latika could not achieve it, for this girl the mobster had other plans, one of them was to use it for prostitution, selling her virginity to very good price. These are some situations and decisions that had to face to get ahead and achieve their goals. TASK 6 – WRITING A CHARACTER ANALYSIS

    Write a character analysis of one of the main characters in the film: Jamal, Malik, Latika or Salim. A flat or static character usually represents one human characteristic and has little or no development, while a round character is more fully developed and changes due to conflicts he or she deals with in the film. Decide whether you think your chosen character is round or flat and give reasons for your answer. CHARACTER ANALYSIS OF SALIM FROM SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE

    One of the main characters is Salim. He is a slumdog who originally comes from the slum in India. He is the brother of Jamal who is a contestant on a game show called: “Who wants to be a millionaire”. In the first round of the game show, Jamal wins 10 million rupees, and only lacks one question from winning 20 million rupees. Since he is a slumdog, and could not possibly know all these answers, they accuse him of cheating. The whole movie shows why he actually know all of the answers, not because he is particularly
    smart, but because of happenings in his life. I would say that Salim is a round character. When we first see him, he is a little boy in the slum who watches his mother getting brutally killed right in front of his eyes. Salim and his brother Jamal is now on their own. In the start both of the brothers is kind of similar and equal. But after they meet Latika and end up in the house with all the future beggars, we can see that the Salim is developing. He is a much more rough character than Jamal, and is quickly given a “leader” position in the house. He is loud and is not afraid of saying what he thinks. When he finds out that they is going to make Jamal blind, he shows a good side of himself and rescues them. When they find Latika again after many years separated from her, Salim changes and throws Jamal out of an empty apartment they find. Again we see that he is a “bad” boy. And whole through the film we see different sides of him, mean, nice, loving, sad. In the end of the movie Salim saves Latika because he knows that she loves Jamal, and that they belong together. He shows compassion, a side we don’t see in the rest of the movie. I think he is a complex person, who struggles with himself. He has a lot of sides, and is kind of driven between good and bad. Task 7 – Writing a review or an analytical essay

    Task 8 – Discussion: summarizing the film

    1) Go back to your list about India from the pre-activity. What are your impressions of India after watching this film? Does the film change or confirm your first impressions? What has the film taught you about India?

    2) After watching the film, what is your impression of the show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? now? What does this say about Western Values? Compare to your pre-activity list of impressions.

    3) Why do you think this film has become such a huge success across the globe and has won so many awards?

    4) What does this film say about the English-language media’s role in international society?

    Task 9 – In-depth study: working with the script

    Extract 1

    Discussion – Comprehension

    1) How does Prem react to Jamal getting the right answer?
    2) There are four examples of Indian words in the English dialogue above: yaar, Raja, crore and Computer-ji D lock kiya-jaye. Search the net for the meaning of these words or the contexts in which they are used. 3) How does Prem use language to try to manipulate or persuade Jamal?

    Discussion – Interpretation

    1) Why is it ironic when Prem says to Jamal “From rags to Raja. It’s your destiny.” 2) Why do you think Prem gives Jamal the wrong answer?
    3) Why does Jamal choose D?
    4) Discuss the effect of the mixing of languages that we see in this extract.

    Extract 2


    1) What line does Jamal say that ties back to the on-screen text in Segment 1 of the film and alternative D “It is written”?

    2) What book is the final question based on?
    The Three Musketeers book.

    3) Where in the film have we seen this book before?
    At the beginning, when Salim and Jamal were kids and they were at school.
    4) Who answers the phone when the studio calls?

    5) What is Javed’s reaction when he hears who is on the phone? He is very angry and he starts shouting to Latika and Salim 6) What happens to Salim?
    Salim died.

    7) Where do Jamal and Latika meet?
    In a train station.

    8) What happens right at the end of the film?
    All the actors and actresses dance.


    1) Why does Prem say “I can safely say that tonight is the biggest night of both of our lives”?

    2) What is the significance of Latika saying “I’ve never known”?

    3) What does it say about Jamal’s life when his brother’s mobile number is the only number he knows? That Jamal is alone and his unique family is his brother Salim.

    4) When Jamal answers “A”, do you think he really cares at this point whether he wins or not? At that point, Jamal doesn’t care if he wins or not.
    5) Why do you think Salim chooses to die?
    Because anyway Javed is going to kill him to help Latika. 6) Explain the meaning of “The first real smile of Jamal’s adult life”. Because Jamal’s life was full of tragedy since his mother died, he was forced to live on the streets and he suffered neglect and ill–treatment of society towards an orphan child. 7) What is the symbolic message of Salim dying in the tub with all the money? A bathtub full of money represents all the money that he never had and he always wanted, especially in his childhood 8) What is your opinion of the romantic ending when Jamal says “This is our destiny”? I think that is a good romantic ending becuase even when in all the story Latika and Jamal were separated for different
    reasons, at the end they were together. 9) In earlier exercises you have talked about the message of the film. What effect does the romantic ending have on the message? The romantic ending gives the story a Little of fairy tale that softens brutal realism that it shows.

    What effect is created when the credits are interspersed with the main actors and many extras dancing on the train platform? The dance

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