LIFE OF PI [2012] movie review

January 25, 2013 · Print This Article

I am not sure if any director paints as vivid a canvas as Ang Lee does, and LIFE OF PI [2012] only strengthens that argument. A castaway Indian boy floating on the great Pacific in a lifeboat, with a tiger and every color ever imagined, that would be my one sentence summary of LIFE OF PI.

I did not know what to expect with LIFE OF PI as is normally my custom to know as little about a movie as possible going in. I knew from the one sheet that there would be a boy on a boat with a tiger, but none of the circumstances of how that came about, of if the tiger was a magical companion, etc.

In a lazy way I could describe PI as a combination of Forrest Gump with the Old Man & The Sea. The audience is told the tale of Pi’s life by the adult Pi, so we know of course that no matter what happens, he survives, and ends up for some reason in Canada.

The movie quickly establishes what it really wants to explore, but I cannot seem to say what that is. It wants to I would say explore a dream of faith and perseverance and challenge, and what it means to be animal, and to be human, and how the two still must mix.

Since the movie stays in the fantastic and a dream like world so much, the emotional impact is somewhat muted until the very end. Then the end itself becomes abrupt and made me think the movie is going to end on a fail, only to reveal I guess what could be called a twist in the story interpretation. It worked, but I also think a more powerful ending would have been to fade the screen to black much earlier, at the real emotional highpoint of the movie happens on a Mexican beach.


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