Salaam Bombay! - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Salaam Bombay! Reviews

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March 30, 2016
Rarely has been captured the emotions of a child so real on film and for that Mira Nair, hats off!
October 24, 2015
another tale of a street kid in the slums od Bombay (Mumbai)
August 9, 2015
Transcend yourself into one of the rare and most bitter cinematic experiences of all time.
½ December 13, 2014
A fabulous insight into lives of street children in Mumbai. Great to watch even so many years after release. Amazing acting with great direction and editing. A must watch and one of the gems of Indian cinema.
November 12, 2014
Wow. That's some good shit. I can't decide what I like most about this movie. The writing probably, a never-ending cavalcade of engaging and believable characters and stories.
July 11, 2014
[Interested: cannot find.]
October 10, 2013
Mira Nair 's best work- She could not create anything better than this after.
June 18, 2013
While it can be considered a documentary disguised as drama with probably a cause coated around with sugar, I would primarily like to see it as just another piece of storytelling on the screen. A fictional drama, because that is what it is, and that is how it should be considered. The sheer brilliance of the visual storytelling of Salaam Bombay! strikes you, as does the brilliant performances of its otherwise amateur actors, with the exception of the professional mastery of Raghubir Yadav, Anita Kanwar and Nana Patekar. Truly capturing the life on the streets and the darkness of life, this film can deliver the ultimate push of inspiration into the wilderness that an aspiring film would need. Mira Nayar truly creates a majestic impression and I would be delightfully surprised if she can ever raise the bar of her work than what she has achieved with Salaam Bombay. With the passionate and well chosen score by L. Subramaniam, cinema doesn't get better than this. One of the best films you would ever watch.
My logline: Circumstances forsake an abandoned child to the city of Bombay, where he finds and loses love, his innocence and himself.
My tagline: Hell is a place on earth.
½ April 30, 2013
From thieves to drug peddlers, the film chronicles the life of children living on Mumbai streets. Directed by Mira Nair, this Hindi film went on to win many awards at global film festivals.
½ April 2, 2013
A heart wrenching and brutally honest depiction of the life of children living(dying) in the streets of Bombay. 'Haunting' is the word that best describes this film. One of the best films about India, from India..
'Salaam Bombay!' was only the second Indian film to be nominated for an Oscar.

When on the way to a jail cum institution in the police van, an older riding companion reaches over and touches Krishna's hair(the main child character) and says, "It'll be all right. One day... in our India, things will be all right." Twenty-five years since this movie was made, one hopes and senses that things in India are moving in the direction of proving the old man's prophecy correct.

At the end of the film we see a desperate, hopeless and desolated Chaipau(Krishna) crying his heart out at his lost of innocence and at all the misery he has endured after being abandoned by his parents. One can only hope that Chaipau triumphs in the end(of his life). This is not a quirky-forgetful film, but a film that plays in the mind beyond the running time. A movie that haunts long after and captivates the mind.
An absolute must-see.

But it doesn't seem that many people have seen it. I sure hope more people do.. These children don't have much of a voice to speak out in our country, but movies like this give them one and it should be heard by everyone.
March 25, 2013
Still mind blowing after all these years and one of the most influential cinema verite films ever made. Mira Nair, much like orson Welles , peaked too early. Her legacy will be this film. One of the most important films on india ever. Watch it.
November 11, 2012
a BreathTaking Masterpiece >
July 29, 2012
Similar to Pixote about the slums of Bombay
½ March 16, 2012
Mira Nair gives a good lead character to follow, but Salaam Bombay! is overlong and loses focus. We start out following Krishna, a boy who lives on the streets in Bombay because his mother told him he can only come back home if he makes 500 rupees to pay back his brother's bike. Krishna decides to do odd jobs around the city, as well as work for a guy selling tea. He also makes connections with other boys that live on the streets. This could have worked if we wouldn't have left Krishna for a second. Nair sets it up from the beginning that we are going to be following Krishna by showing us his journey before he gets to Bombay. So really, when we leave him we are disconnecting from the story. I understand why she wanted to tell the story of Baba and Rekha, but I'm not so sure she went about it in the right way. It was an interesting side plot though. Someone last night (I'm not going to say who out of respect) was flat out wrong about the characters. This person typically wants everything spoon fed to him and doesn't want subtlety or a back story before the film starts. This is what The 400 Blows does much better than this film. Here, the characters are too much in your face. Nair doesn't show us how the characters are, rather she mostly tells us. We get that his friend turns into a junky. We see that quite enough. Also, I always got the feeling that Baba was powerful and dangerous because no one seems to mess with him. But why? I haven't seen him actually do something dangerous. There were undertones for a while, but without him actually doing anything we start to think our assumptions are wrong and these people are afraid for no reason. Again, the story behind Rekha wanting to stop being a prostitute is well done, if only it was outside of this film. Seeing her be with Manju in prison and get denied to take her out because of her job is pretty great. They are tough emotions. On one hand we are angry because she can't get her daughter back, but then we look back on the way she treated her while having sex with other guys. There is no black and white there, and I like it. But this really didn't have much to do with Krishna's story. Nair captures the life of the kids living on the streets in Bombay well, but if it was more concentrated and shorter it could have been as good as the films she was influenced by.
½ February 19, 2012
Revisiting Salaam Bombay, one of my favourite Indian movies. Remarkable for its realism and non-actors all from the streets of Mumbai. Beautiful photography, bitter-sweet plot and closer to a documentary than to a movie.
February 15, 2012
A moving depiction of the lowest of the low in the slum of Bombay. This films feels like a down-to-earth documentary, but is moving like a great drama. The fact that it was shot on location, using non-actors in many of the roles makes it even more touching.
February 13, 2012
One other movie that tries to capture the ugly side of India and wins solely because of the perspective it provides.
½ November 24, 2011
I saw Salaam Bombay again after almost 15 years - but for the Bombay little has changed, how much endures, still!
I had also forgotten how rich yet stark Mira Nair's language is... in the tradition of films like 400 Blows, it takes its time in the midst of the hectic pace of the city.
November 18, 2011
if you liked slumdog millionaire ... check this out ... a brutally honest depiction of the life of the children of the streets of the Mumbai ... made way back in 1988, this is Indian Cinema at its best !
October 4, 2011
Looks amazing. Gotta see it.
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