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Slumdog Millionaire

Slumdog Millionaire

Date: Feb 25 2009

Themes: Romance

Grammar: Count and Noncount Nouns


1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

Wouldn’t you love to suddenly become rich and famous? Wouldn’t most people love that? Rags to riches stories tend to be incredibly popular, because so many of us fantasize about our lives changing overnight. From classic fairy tales like Cinderella to modern films like Pretty Woman and Pursuit of Happyness, tales of people who rise from poverty to wealth have been inspiring audiences for centuries.

The new movie Slumdog Millionaire is no exception. It tells the story of a young man from the slums of Mumbai who becomes a contestant on an Indian game show and wins the top prize. Nobody expected him to win because he isn’t well-educated, so he gets arrested for cheating. As the police question him, he shares the story of his life with them and reveals how it’s possible that he knew all the right answers.

Marni thinks Slumdog Millionaire is an inspiring and beautiful film, but Amanda doesn’t want to see it. Listen to them talk about it.


1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

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2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.





Marni:  Have you seen Slumdog Millionaire?

Amanda:  I have not.

Marni:  Oh! You’ve got to go. It’s fantastic.

Amanda:  I’m not really into those independent films, I don’t know…

Marni:  Oh please!

Amanda:  Thinking, little action…

Marni:  There’s a lot of action, actually.

Amanda:  Really?

Marni:  I’d heard about this film ‘cause I’m a fan of the director, Danny Boyle.

Amanda:  Never heard of him.

Marni:  Really?

Amanda:  Yeah.

Marni:  Trainspotting? 28 Days Later?

Amanda:  OK, OK, yes. I’ve seen both of those.

Marni:  Anyhow, I was intrigued, but then I heard the

premise was like, guy who goes on the Indian version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, and I was like, how do they make a film about that?

Amanda:  So it’s about a game show?

Marni:  It is, but it’s about so much more. It’s really a portrayal of these children growing up in the slums of India, and what their lives are like, and like how certain things come to be, where he ends up being on this game show. And how life-changing that could be. It’s a total rags-to-riches story.

Amanda:  OK, so it follows the life of the contestant, right?

Marni:  Follows the life of the contestant and his brother and their friend… And it’s just tragic throughout, but it’s also interspersed with all these beautiful shots of India. And it’s very…

Amanda:  I’m assuming happy ending, wins the game show?

Marni:  Against the odds, yeah.

Amanda:  Nice. I’ll check it out.

Marni:  You definitely should.


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Marni recently saw the movie Slumdog Millionaire. She strongly recommends that Amanda go see it. But Amanda is skeptical at first because she usually doesn’t like independent films. Indie films are often thought to be slower, more intelligent, but less exciting than major Hollywood films.

Yet even though Slumdog Millionaire is considered an independent film, Marni says it has a lot of action in it and is very exciting to watch. At first she wasn’t sure she would be interested in the plot about a young man who goes on an Indian game show. But she soon found out that the movie is actually about kids growing up in the slums of India. When one of the kids gets to be a contestant on a game show, his life changes and he goes from rags to riches. Marni thinks the film is sad, beautiful and inspiring. Amanda decides to go see it.

Do you think rags to riches stories are inspiring or unrealistic? If you won a lot of money on a game show, how would it change your life?



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Ngubo Sixtus

South Africa


07:13 PM Apr 06 2013 |



Hong Kong



02:16 PM Sep 16 2012 |



Syrian Arab Republic

Rags to riches stories are inspiring but unfortunately unrealisitc, as well !!
cause nowadays ppl without abilities such as money can’t  try their luck  in a gameshow or in anything else like applying for sth for the study!!
Cause everything depends on money. :(
But i believe in destiny and if someone was fated to be a millionaire someday,it can happen regardless his situation !!!:)

09:42 PM Aug 21 2011 |




First, its not really an independent movie because Warner Bros. is one of the production companies behind that movie.
Rags to rich stories are really unrealistic in the 21th centuries. We also have that game show in germany there was never people without a job or poor people. So, because you have to apply for it and you will be chosen to be a contestant.
This movie is insiring because it not just tells us about the “who wants to be a millionare”, it shows us the life in India, the slums, mendicant organization and prostitution and with there you see the big differences in this contry. And in contries like India, i think it is still possible to become a millionare from the rags.
Yes it would change my life i think, money dont make you happy but if you do something good with the money it can make you happy, for example to found an organisation to help people in slums how you will see in this movie.

12:45 PM Aug 21 2011 |





02:38 PM Apr 15 2010 |



i've seen that film..so nice

02:01 PM Feb 18 2010 |




11:33 AM Jan 18 2010 |




really great movie

02:29 PM Oct 08 2009 |



its very good ,i need some conversations,which it likes indian traditions

01:23 PM Jun 17 2009 |



Saudi Arabia

I havn't seen it yet but I like this kind of stories Smile

02:54 PM Jun 08 2009 |




i have seen it,i think it is great.and i tell my mum watch it,she did.she is agreed with my opinion.

i know this film in india is not  accepted by some people

it has some shortcoming:

actor can't exprience all the questions,it is not true

it introduct the bad part of  slums


02:41 PM Jun 04 2009 |




i have seen it,i think it is great.and i tell my mum watch it,she did.she is agreed with my opinion.

i know this film in india is not  accepted by some people

it has some shortcoming:

actor can't exprience all the questions,it is not true

it introduct the bad part of  slums


02:41 PM Jun 04 2009 |



the rags to riches stories are not inspiring at all in life, i think it is realistic though but it is something you even don't when it will come true..

02:01 AM Jun 04 2009 |



United Kingdom

film was really good, everyone should see. i think rags to riches stories are unrealistic but on the other hand everything is possible if you are lucky so much :D. money makes life-changing from "0" to "10". you could do anything what you want or buy what you need. if i won, ... :)

09:28 PM Mar 17 2009 |



I think some rags to riches stories are good for inspiring us,such as this one ,but not all. As me, the last quesition is difficult to answer.

02:09 PM Mar 05 2009 |




I think these stories are a bit unreal…But the idea is great! If I become reach in a game show,I’d have everything what I ever wanted ;)

01:03 PM Mar 04 2009 |




I not yet see it,but I'll :)

Here in Brazil there is a game show of the guy called Silvio Santos…He gives a lot of money to the people in your programs tv,he is very very reach! So,he becomes many people riches too :)

12:55 PM Mar 04 2009 |




Super film! But it was very had at the beginning. I even cried.( But then…happy ending) Great! I watched it thanks to this lesson.

12:25 PM Mar 04 2009 |



I haven't seen before this movie so , I can't say anything about it, but I saw the oscar awards and I believe that'll be a good movie, because its awards were a lot and it demostrate not only in the US make a good movies

11:50 PM Mar 03 2009 |




Of course.. From rags to riches stories are interesting because they resemble real life where people want to become rich over nights. I have not seen that movie but i have seen a lot of games show in which people get millionaire in one night but their dreams for life and they already planned where they have to spend their money.

08:06 PM Mar 03 2009 |

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