It seems that more and more people are trying to have a social conscience these days. The message has finally gotten across to us: AIDS isn’t just for gay people, Africans need fresh water, your lifestyle is ruining the environment, etc. The younger generations, scorning their parents debt and divorce ridden lives, are less concerned with amassing stuff, and more concerned with relationships, experiences and making a difference. At the same time, we live in a flat and tolerant society, where it’s normal to have relationships with people of other beliefs and co-workers in another hemisphere.
The success of Slumdog Millionaire comes from its awareness of the social trends and the trendy conscience. It’s a powerful call to arms, but in a way that could not have been possible in past generations. Slumdog depicts the worst of India and the global economy. The majority of the movie revolves around kids living in a trash dump. But instead of showing a starving child with a fly on his face, it instead tells a story of redemption and hope. Though Jamal and Latika are a world away, their underdog love story is one we all want to identify with.
I believe that Slumdog will bring attention to the growing crises in the world’s megacities, and I believe that this younger generation will respond. We love Slumdog because it gives an unfiltered view of the worst this world has to offer, and its spirit of hope inspires us to make a difference.