Friday, February 13, 2009

Slumdog, scumdogs, underdogs, top dogs and hot dogs in Malaysia dog-eat-dog politics

I have to admit that I love this Slumdog Millionaire movie and this ‘fluke’ movie continues to rock. It is amazing that unlike most movies in this genre and class, it has had a dream run at the box office as well as managed to capture the imagination of stuffy critics. After winning five Critics’ Choice Awards and four Golden Globes, the movie has bagged seven out of 11 Bafta awards. 

Along the way, this young composer, AR Rahman has become the first Indian to win both Golden Globe and Bafta. And there’s more than a reasonable chance that the whiz kid will cap his rhapsody with the Oscars. So will the other men and women behind the phenomenon of Slumdog Millionaire. 
The movie has landed itself 10 Oscar nominations, another feat for an Indian movie.

This is a rare moment of pride for the world’s largest democracy and all that it celebrates and epitomises. 
A billion plus Indians are justifiably proud of this historic success of their own. Even cynics amongst those Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) here in the UAE cannot resist joining 
in the celebrations. 
Me too feel good about this underdog phenomenon as I love to see the real heroes come out to beat those evil doers

As in reality, the rags to riches story of a Muslim boy growing up in Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, could be a metaphor for modern India. Like Jamal the young protagonist, the country dreams big and thinks king size despite its myriad limitations and issues. It’s a land where anything is possible, just as Jamal’s 
impossible windfall on a television game show inspired by Who Wants to be a Millionaire?

I would say in India or anywhere else, including our beloved tanahair, open, honest and often ruthless competition can ensure only the best, la crème de la crème, survive in the race. Muslims do well in the Bollywood because it’s still a fair and even field out there. They do not have to battle impossible quotas based on caste or inherent biases and prejudices of a system that barely tolerates them.

As a Muslim from one of the poorest and most squalid neighbourhoods in the country, Jamal is the ultimate underdog. Yet he takes on and beats the system. The Indian Muslims or Malaysian Muslims will have to learn from Jamal and the never-say-die-spirit of resilience that his character embodies if they really want to change their lot. It’s not enough for them to be good. They will have to be better than the best to win.

Therefore, Slumdog Millionaire reminds me of those scumdogs, underdogs, top dogs, old dogs and hot dogs in Malaysia dog-eat-dog politics especially in the United Malays National Organisation ‘circus’, as the most corrupt political party, if not in the world, it is in Malaysia.

The situation is not different from George Orwell’s Animal Farm that ALL ANIMALS ARE EQUAL, BUT SOME ANIMALS ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS!

1 comment:

hady said...

semalam baru tengok film ni kat Mercato

love the film very much as i think the film is very honest, truly.

dan walau india government bang the movie, i still think the movie captured the truth of india.

5 star!