Movie Review of Life of Pi

Life of Pi   

Starring: Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Rafe Spall, Adil Hussain, Tabu, Shravanthi Sainath


Directed by Ang Lee


Rated: PG

Run Time: 125 mins

Genre: Drama/ Adventure/ 3D Film


Opens November 21st


By Lisa Minzey of The Reel



Opening this week, among many other new releases, is Academy Award winning Director Ang Lee’s new film Life of Pi. Based on the best selling book by Yann Martel, Life of Pi has won the Audience Award at the 2012 Mill Valley Film Festival.


When a freelance writer heard that he should meet am man named Pi (Irfamn Khan) because he has an unbelievable story, he was intrigued.  The writer had been searching for his next project and was at an impasse. As he sits down to hear the wild tale of Pi Patel (Suraj Sharma) the 16 year old boy who spend 227 days at sea, stuck in a life boat with aBengaltiger.


When he was a boy, Piscine Molitor Patel, a.k.a. Pi, grew up in a small coastal town ofIndia, living on a piece of land that was once a botanical garden converted into a zoo.  When he was still a small boy aBengaltiger arrived named Richard Parker. Pi felt a connection with this animal as he had been on a spiritual quest to find meaning in his young life. He studied 3 main religions, including hi native religion, Hinduism against the wishes of his father, demanding he approach life from a rational view of thinking.


About the time Pi was in high school, his father decided to sell the zoo and move the family toCanada. They would use the animals from the zoo as collateral for their move; placing them in zoos inNorth Americafor purchase. The news deeply disturbed Pi as he just starting dating a beautiful young girl from a dance troop he played drums for.   Somewhere along the way, the Chinese freight ship sinks during a fierce storm, killing all aboard except for Pi, a zebra, hyena, orangutang andBengaltiger.


The first few days were challenging as natural selection took over until all that was left were Richard Parker and Pi. Pi was able to survive with the supplies in the life raft, but taking care of Richard Parker would be a challenge. When they were in India, Richard Parker would be fed several times a day, so Pi needs to learn to co-exist with Richard Parker so they would not both be claimed by the grandest danger of all; the Ocean.  Exposed to the elements, Pi’s faith, courage and character are placed to the ultimate test, and what he finds is the ultimate spiritual journey, finding proof of God.


When there have been so many movies that utilize the 3D technology, very few can make it look authentic and believable. The only genre so far where it had been worth watching is the animated films, and a handful of live action films such as "Avatar" and "Hugo". "Life of Pi" is one of those films whose cinematography is stunning to watch in 3D and is one that must be experienced in that format. The colors are vibrant, and the world comes alive, surrounding the viewer with such intense imagery that it’s impossible not to get swept up in the film. Although most of the story takes pace at sea and the only dialogue are really that of Pi talking to himself, God or the tiger Richard Parker, it lacks the finesse of previously other survivor films like Cast Away or 127 Hours. This is the most visually ambitious project Ang Lee has taken on since “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” but is an astonishing feat of visual imagery. Check out "Life of Pi" when it opens in theaters starting Wednesday November 21, 2012.