Violence and Corruption Analysis: Slumdog Millionaire

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Violence and Corruption – Distinctive Images in the Opening Scene
The opening sequence of Slumdog Millionaire creates distinctive images that overwhelm the audience and foregrounds the concept of violence and entrapment.
The film confronts the viewer from the first frame where an extreme close up of Jamal’s restrained torso is presented. The camera then pans to again focus on an extreme close up of his frightened face to emphasise the brutality and helplessness of his situation

The juxtaposition of this image with the close up of his torturer creates intensity and positions the audience to empathise with Jamal. The inhumanity of the situation is highlighted by the use of the unnatural yellow of the colour palette which creates a
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Boyle then cuts to an overhead shot of the set to suggest an image of Jamal at the center of a cage created by the lights and rigging of the set which further establishes Jamal’s vulnerability and powerlessness.

Boyle continues to cross cut between the Millionaire set, and the interrogation throughout the opening sequence, occasionally using physical violence (slap) to transition between the two. Continuing the close up from one set into the other also increases the audience’s empathy for Jamal. In the seedy yellow of the interrogation room, Boyle uses close ups to confront the audience with Jamal’s suffering at the hands of those who have power over him, however, in the Millionaire set, with the calmer blue palette, the continued use of close ups forces the audience to not only contrast these images of Jamal which draws the conclusion that the glitz and glamour of the game show is an illusion, but also that Jamal is trapped and powerless in both

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