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Salaam Bombay!
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Reviews & Ratings for
Salaam Bombay! More at IMDbPro »

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Real cinema, poetic and symbolic.

9/10
Author: jayleshd from United Kingdom
17 April 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is your gritty, eye opening, edge of your seat film. If you want to know what the life of the slum is about, then watch this movie.

Danny Boyle's commercialisation take on this issue took away the real hardship faced everyday by the people in the slums.

The grainy, in your face approach of this film is what makes it genuine to its purpose. This is the real deal and there isn't a big budget in sight.

I have always enjoyed Mira Nair's work, having watched Mississippi Masala, The Namesake, Monsoon Wedding and this, her work is poetic in execution and flow. The objective set out to be explained is true to its soul and always believable plots are used.

It is not a quirky, forgetful film, but a film that is different and yet can hold your attention.

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Mira Nair began her career working on documentaries, and she has put that experience to excellent use in all of her narrative work, beginning with her debut feature.

8/10
Author: G K from Mars
1 February 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Salaam Bombay! was only the second Indian film to be nominated for an Oscar. The story is about an 11-year old country boy's adventures among thieves, prostitutes and drug addicts in a large city.

The film is a dazzling feature debut for director Mira Nair, who immediately joined the ranks of world-class film-makers with this affecting, documentary-style dissection of a teeming, often dangerous city. A brilliant study of street life, acted by a cast of mainly homeless children, it is moving and harrowing, and has genuine poignancy. Salaam Bombay! was the film showing in the theatre during the film Scenes From A Mall, starring Woody Allen and Bette Midler.

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The earlier, better Slumdog Millionaire

9/10
Author: E Canuck from Vancouver, Canada
9 January 2010

The hype around Slumdog Millionaire--which I found only okay, made me want to see Salaam Bombay, again and see if it was the superior film about a similar milieu in India I remembered from decades ago. It isn't--it's better than I remember. I must have grown a higher tolerance for cinema verite and the heartaches of poor children than I had when I first saw this.

Part of this might have been fostered by my recent enjoyment of a documentary of notable similarity to Salaam Bombay--Born into Brothels (also excellent.) What's more enjoyable than I had remembered is the rich colour and cinematography, the depth of character -- no throw-away stereotypes -- and the masterful depiction of place.

DVD extras we watched so far were poignant, especially the one about the actor who played the main character, Shafiq Sayed, who didn't have an easy life even after the success of the film.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

The movie that can change a person

10/10
Author: bollywoodplusplus from United States
14 January 2009

I just finished watching Salaam Bombay - for some reason, this movie always skipped my radar, and never had a chance to watch this gem! Almost 20 yrs later, today I saw it.

Wow, what a movie - there is so much power in movie-making, and Salaam Bombay is perfect example. It can change the way you think, it can change a society. It can bring 'change'! As a matter of fact, the DVD I watched was made probably 15 yrs after the movie release, so they had a special coverage on all the social activities and organizations that has emerged after the movie. Salaam Baalak, SalaamStreetKids.org, and so many. I was quite thrilled to see some kids were adopted from the movie and they have made their life.

I myself feel like doing something some day to uplift that strata of the society. If I can make at least a couple of kids' life - and if so many of us do their part, we can bring in such a change! This movie is immense, my sincere thanks to Mira Nair to have made such a special movie. And all the other people who are associated directly or indirectly with the making of this masterpiece - it doesn't matter if this movie mattered cinematically and how many awards it got, I think you must have received blessings from millions of people who saw the movie. That is way higher than any awards you can think of.

Needless to say, it has made me a different person! Awesome.

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3 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

The "feel bad" movie of the year

7/10
Author: planktonrules from Bradenton, Florida
9 March 2006

This is a very well-made film--I certainly can't quibble about the direction or acting. In fact, I guess there really isn't anything WRONG with it. It's a very realistic look at life in the slums of Bombay--complete with child abuse, lots and lots of drug abuse, prostitution and absolute destitution--far more than western audiences could imagine. So from this standpoint, it's a great film. However, the film didn't engage me like some other similar films (such as CITY OF GOD--a film about the Brazilian slums and drug lords). Yes, it was very sad and awful and horrific, but that was about it. It was almost like watching a documentary on misery. I did appreciate it how through most of the film, the child who is the star maintains some of his humanity, but by the end this was vanishing and so was my attention. It's like there was just SOMETHING missing from the film,...what, I am a little at a loss to say. Maybe it's because the movie offers no hope, suggestions for change or future.

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1 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Please read a touch of brightness

10/10
Author: lukemendes-1 from India
31 July 2008

Please read a touch of brightness by Mr. Partap Sharma. Ms Nair has taken a lot from this 60's stage play. Ask her about it. She's stolen the core of the play and not crediting him. Its pretty common the cannibalistic nature of non creative people who cant come up with original ideas. She's not doing that well now is she? Now there will be a film which will hit her i her head. Cudos to Mera Nair.

Please read a touch of brightness by Mr. Partap Sharma. Ms Nair has taken a lot from this 60's stage play. Ask her about it. She's stolen the core of the play and not crediting him. Its pretty common the cannibalistic nature of non creative people who cant come up with original ideas. She's not doing that well now is she? Now there will be a film which will hit her i her head. Cudos to Mera Nair.

Please read a touch of brightness by Mr. Partap Sharma. Ms Nair has taken a lot from this 60's stage play. Ask her about it. She's stolen the core of the play and not crediting him. Its pretty common the cannibalistic nature of non creative people who cant come up with original ideas. She's not doing that well now is she? Now there will be a film which will hit her i her head. Cudos to Mera Nair.

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3 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

More interesting than entertaining

6/10
Author: rlange-3 from United States
21 December 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Certainly the subject matter is compelling, i.e. the street children of Bombay. Or at least ought to be, for a variety of reasons.

But I guess that if I want to be informed about them I would prefer a straight up documentary. Or at least a movie that was sufficiently interesting to hold my attention.

Personally I found my interest waning repeatedly as the story line lagged. There was little that was really compelling other than the subject material. And the acting was acceptable but hardly riveting. The plot line was predictable -- POSSIBLE SPOILER HERE -- who did not know shortly after the brick was shown that the boy would be ripped off? And who did not know early on that the addict would die in some drug related manner? Any twists or turns at all to hold our interest in this movie? I don't recall being even mildly intrigued by one.

Still, the redeeming feature was in fact the subject material. It is a rare glimpse into the life of the street children of Bombay, and probably a dozen or more other large metropolitan areas. It's just too bad it wasn't a little more than that.

I gave it a six.

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1 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Most boring film of Nana Patekar ever

3/10
Author: varghesejunior from India
24 April 2013

Maybe this film was meant to be different and award winning, but I found it to be a real Bore.

The film basically focuses on the lives of street children in Bombay-how they come up, how they survive. That is all.

The screenplay is good, story is different, there are no songs, film is kid of explicit...but real real boring....I barely withstood it for the entire length. Even the end was somewhat confusing for me. I could not understand it.

Nana is generally great actor but in this film, his acting is not so remarkable. Would not recommend.

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7 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

A Grim Subject

5/10
Author: ccthemovieman-1 from United States
20 July 2006

This is a movie made in India about a young boy who is forced out into the streets of Bombay, where he sells tea, associates with drug dealers, has his money stolen, on and on, good and bad - mostly bad.

It's a depressing story with little to offer on the bright side. The video box said there is no sex, no violence and no objectionable language. Well, two-of-three ain't bad. I would consider the f-word perhaps "objectionable" to a few people. Amazing how out of touch movie producers and critics are. Speaking of critics, this film always gets high marks from them, so you know it's overrated.

However, it is an interesting study of a depressing subject. That's the best I can describe it.

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1 out of 28 people found the following review useful:

go to hell

2/10
Author: murali83 from United States
28 September 2005

Why do people have to drool over a movie that shows life in Bombay slums 20 years ago with a camera man going all round the place. The film is touching, screw you guys, every day in our life (say 10 years back) we came across slums like this and saw characters like that, how many times did you feel like stopping and thinking about life of such people. By all means the movie is a bore, I have seen hazaar art movies better than this one.

Now lets get to the movie, the movie is all about a small kid who comes from a village to make a living in Bombay and the movie highlights the ways in which he is exploited. Nana Patekar is as usual irksome, oh my god, I cant review this drivel any more.

for god sake, don't see this, and yes shows how stupid people at Oscars are to nominate this movie and thank god, this did not win one.

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