What does the title of the movie mean? How does the title and the contrasts within it provide symbolic summary of the film? The title of the movie, ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ holds notable different meanings between these two words, ‘slumdog’ and ‘millionaire’ and can be expressed into a variety of meanings, depending on the different views from different kind of thoughts. Basically, the word slumdog itself are actually separated to slums and dog, whereby in the movie, Jamal Malik is referred as the slumdog by the police officer in the earlier part of the movie.
This is because in my opinion, the police officer assumes that Jamal is just a poor and uneducated kid, living in the slums of India and won 10 million rupees, so the word ‘dog’ portrays the uneducated and poor condition of Jamal. And based on the Oxford Dictionaries Online, slum means a squalid and overcrowded urban street or district inhabited by very poor people. Hence, this movie focuses on the life of Jamal living in the slums and of course, the life of the poor in India.
On the other hand, the word ‘millionaire’ describe the idea of a person who is wealthy and owns a lot of money, which in this case, referred to Jamal as he successfully won 20 million rupees in the show ‘Who Wants To Be A Millionaire’, by answering all the questions given by only using all the experience he had since he was a kid. Based on the Oxford Dictionaries Online, millionaire defines a person whose assets are worth one million pounds or dollars or more.
Therefore, the title ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ truly reflects the life of Jamal Malik fraught with hardship and how he sought to obtain a more meaningful life in order not to continue living in poverty besides his determination in pursuing his love for Latika. With the meaning of the title of the movie, it also brings the summary that can be conclude and learned throughout the movie. In my opinion, things that can be learn throughout the movie and henceforth relate with the title of the movie can be diversified, depending on the individual himself.
From the general view, this movie highlights the realism of society in India, which focused to the lower class residents. In this movie, the upper class, the elite, and the rich discriminates by assuming that the lower class people like Jamal does not possess the sufficient level of intelligence to win the tough competition and become a millionaire. To them, to be a millionaire they need to have brain meaning having high level of intelligence. In the movie itself the police officer stated that even doctors, professors, and lawyers can never reach beyond winning more than 60000 rupees.
So this explains why the police officer and Prem Kumar, the TV show host would not believe in Jamal’s ability to reach 20 million rupees. But somehow Jamal managed to answer the entire questions just by using his life knowledge and experience he is been through since he was a kid. All of the hardship starting from the death of his mother, to the time when he got separated from Latika when they were running away from Maman, to the time when Jamal and Salim make a living travelling on top of trains.
Some parts of the movie proves that society nowadays taught me that, to be a millionaire, we need to have good and stable background of life, especially from the aspect of wealth and standard of living. When Jamal reached the winnings of 10 million rupees, most people form the city such as the police officer and the host of the show began to assume that he was cheating and making a fraud, just because he is from the slum and have low level of education, making him impossible to answer all of the question in the show.
Moreover, the movie also gives me the idea to interpret that the poor and people living in slums are willing to do anything as long as they survive without much to say. This can be seen from Latika, Jamal’s childhood friend and love interest, working as a prostitute for Maman and later as wife to the head gangster and the main antagonist of the movie, Javed Khan.
Last but not least, besides those as stated above, what I can relate the word ‘millionaire’ with the content of the movie is that it portrays the success of Jamal winning the game show and becoming a millionaire. This also show that Jamal managed to escape living in poverty and to find a more meaningful life ahead. Jamal also managed to achieved the dream of living with his love, Latika. Figuratively, Jamal does not only becomes a man rich with wealth, but also rich with love.