Sunday, 2 December 2012
Life of Pi 
Adapted by Ang Lee from Yann Martel’s Booker-winning novel, Life of Pi is about the triumph of human courage, persistence and the indomitable will to survive over all odds and adversities. But, more than that, this is an allegorical and spiritual tale championing the saying, “Faith is what makes life bearable, with all its tragedies and ambiguities.” Told in flashbacks by its now wizened protagonist (Irfan Khan), the plot tells the tale of the eponymous Pi (Suraj Sharma), the 16-year old son of a zoo-owner, who is stranded on a boat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, along with a mighty Royal Bengal Tiger, when the ship he was travelling in from India to Canada along with his family capsizes. Over the next 227 days at sea, he experiences a gamut of emotions – from wild elation to heartbreaking grief, and he doesn’t just slowly master the art of survival, but also manages to strike a profound kinship with his regal but ferocious mate. Though, in essence, a message-driven movie with a simplistic, fable-like storyline, its spirituality is never in-your-face, nor its tone overtly preachy. Rather, Lee laid greater emphasis on Pi’s fantastical journey, and the myriad life-changing things he experiences, by infusing the tale with magic realism and a constant sense of high adventure. The movie boasts of one of the finest usages of 3D in my experience – the CGI (particularly the creation of the tiger) was exquisite, and the visual design was enthralling. In short, it was an audio-visual feast, and consequently, reason enough to watch the film even for those largely uninterested in spirituality or matters of faith.
Director: Ang Lee
Genre: Fantasy Drama/Adventure/Coming-of-Age