Rushdie criticises Slumdog

British-Indian author Salman Rushdie has attacked the plot of multiple Oscar-winning film Slumdog Millionaire as a ‘patently ridiculous conceit’. Rushdie wrote in Britain’s Guardian newspaper that the central feature of the film that a boy from the Mumbai slums manages to succeed on the Indian TV version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire — ‘beggars belief.’

“This is a patently ridiculous conceit, the kind of fantasy writing that gives fantasy writing a bad name,” said the author.

Rushdie said the central weakness of the film, which won eight Oscars was that it was adapted from a book by Indian diplomat-novelist Vikas Swarup called Q&A which is itself “a corny potboiler, with a plot that defies belief.”

“It is a plot device faithfully preserved by the film-makers and lies at the heart of the weirdly renamed Slumdog Millionaire. As a result the film, too, beggars belief,” wrote Rushdie, who was born in Mumbai.

Rushdie signed off a long lament about the quality of film adaptations of books by saying, “We can only hope that the worst is over and that better movies, better musicals and better times lie ahead.”