Monday, January 5, 2009

Slumdog Millionaire - A Million Dollar Love Story

What is it about good love stories that make you feel oh so warm and fuzzy inside? I don't really like the cliched Hollywood romance movies - they are so predictable, packed with lame jokes and cheesy lines. I don't like cheesy lines. Romance, for me, is not about what you say, it's about what you do. Anyone can produce a cheesy line. All those 'your eyes are like the sparkling starts on the sky' and the 'Oh Romeo, Romeo' crap doesn't make me melt, they make me irk. But when you do something, something unmistakeable not cheesy yet has the word 'love' stamped all over it, now that, ladies and gentlemen, now that is what I am looking for.

I watched Slumdog Millionaire because Rotten Tomatoes movie review said that it was a 'modern fairytale' and 'surprisingly refreshing'. And I love movies. I watch all kinds of movies from action to drama to indie to cross-culutural ones. Movies have this power of transporting your mind into a completely different world. And for Slumdog Millionaire, my oh my. I did not think any of the boys were cute or any of the girls are pretty, which are usually the reasons most people would want to see a movie, but the film just sucks you in, into this world where the hero does not look like an underwear model and the heroine does not wear designer shoes and sips cofee in the mornings.

It's not your typical movie, and what I wouldn't give to watch something original for a change. It's basically about a Muslim Indian boy who went through poverty and the begging industry, and participated in 'Who wants to be a Millionaire' in India just because he knew the girl he loved would be watching him. I mean, the way he was always looking out for her and trying to save her even though he couldn't - I WANT A BOYFRIEND LIKE THAT!! And the best thing was they were seperated for years because of the whole poverty thing, but he never stopped looking for her. A big fat W-O-W.

In the beginning, when they showed his living environment as a slumdog, it actually made me feel like I could not wait to adopt a kid from India. The director did not design the film to be sad and sympethatic, he directed it in a matter-of-fact manner, which is good becuase it reminds us that stories doesn't just happen in New York City, it happens anywhere in the world where humans live.

There was one distinct moment in the middle of the movie when the boy was waiting for the girl at the crowded train station, and when she looked up to see him on the upper floor. Sigh. They did not say a word to each other and only smiled, and that is an exact example of what I meant when I say that it's not about what you say, it's about what you do. They said nothing but you know right there that this is one hell of a beautiful scene. And the ending was just purr-fect.

So kudos to the guy who made this movie. I love it. It's different and authentic, and believe you me, since the 21 November until today I have watched no less than 60 movies, and this is one ranks real high.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year - Time to Shut Up and Stop Complaining. Hip Hip Hooray.

Today is 2009. This year I'll start working, and I'll be waving those years and lifetime attending classes goodbye. I remembered an earlier time when my father was teaching me how to use the toilet properly. I remembered the few times my mother would come home from the hospital with a new baby - my younger sister and my two brothers. I remembered my old school bag with a picture of a cartoon swan at the front zipper. I remembered the little things, the familiar scent of my nanny when I was younger, those junk food i bought after school, that lifetime when the world is a happy place, when I have a mother and a father and a family and friends and school.

I also remembered a vital portion of my life - my complaints. I complain about everything. I wished my handbags are more expensive. I wished my life is more adventurous. I wished I was richer. I wished I didnt have to go to school and spend more time doing anything I want to do. Most of all I liked to complain that my life is not satisfactory enough, like there are so many things waiting for me to do.

Humans are designed to be ungrateful. That is why older men face mid-life crisis and teenagers rebel, why girls want to be skinnier and chidlren think parents are getting in their ways. We are designed to always want more and keep complaining. I am a true example of these people. So to have a resolution to stop complaining would probably be utterly impossible, for me or for anyone else. It's like defying how we were made.

Sometimes when I think about it, I honestly, and I'm not just saying this - loathe myself. I get scared that one day, maybe, God will be tired of listening to my complaints that He would stop giving me anything anymore. Last night was the new year's eve and all I ever did was complain that I did not have a proper celebration, like going out with friends and watching fireworks and screaming and yelling for no reason in excitement in the Perth city. I complained that my life was boring. After midnight I was reading 'Yahoo News' and it said that children died in Palestine during the bombing. Adults too. So as I was complaining about my boring New Year's Eve, simultaneously as I was speaking, a mother had lost her child, a girl had lost a brother, someone was not able to say a proper goodye to her father, and a boy could not even find the pieces of his dead mother.

As I thought about this I wondered why God did not send someone, or something, to come and slap me right across my face and to tell me to SHUT UP AND STOP COMPLAINING. Because God understands that men reap what they sew, that men are selfish, self-centered and have no appreciation on how lucky they are. I'd bet that while I was complaining that my clothes were out of season and my laptop is too old, someone on the darker side of the world, Palestine, say, would give anything to have my life.

So this year, I am going to make a new resolution. The old ones would still be affective of course, those same old resolutions that I've always had, like losing a few pounds, working out more, sleep less etc. But besides that, I will add one more thing to my resolution.

I want to do something that has nothing to do with myself and my benefits.

I'm not sure exactly what it is. Maybe I'll volunteer for a charity, maybe in a few years I will adopt an orphan, maybe I will spend my Christmas holidays helping out refugees in some other countries. I have not figured out exactly what it is that I want to do, but I will definitely do it. My father always told me that when we die, one of the things that will stop us from going to heaven would be those people who I could've helped in this world but I did nothing to help them, because I was busy being too self-absorbed. Why wouldn't they anyway? The life after this holds so much more justice that this world will ever have. And I don't want that to happen to me.

So once I've started working this year and I am more financially stable to support myself I would give it a better plan. And I am definitely going to ask my girlfriends (that'll be you guys, Hana, Odd, Zaza, etc) if they want to do something too. I mean, I'm sure it'll be a lot better if I have friends to do it with. And I am definitely sure that my girlfriends with their lucky lives would look forward to do something bigger than themselves too, right? Wink wink ;)

So, year 2009. Here's hoping for a life better lived, time well spent, and friends and family well loved. Peace out~