Spin Control

Crating Slumdog

There seems to be growing consensus that not only will Slumdog Millionaire win the Academy Award for best film, but that it deserves to win it. Dennis Lim at Slate throws some much-needed water on all the hype: “If Slumdog has struck a chord, and it certainly seems to have done so in the West, it is not because the film is some newfangled post-globalization hybrid but precisely because there is nothing new about it. It traffics in some of the oldest stereotypes of the exoticized Other: the streetwise urchin in the teeming Oriental city. (The success of Slumdog has apparently given a boost to the dubious pastime of slum tourism—or "poorism," as it's also known.) And not least for American audiences, it offers the age-old fantasy of class and economic mobility, at a safe remove that for now may be the best way to indulge in it.”