Monday, 17 December 2012

LIFE OF PI (2012)

Yann Martel's fantasy novel "Life of Pi", released in 2001, was called as "unfilmable", but Ang Lee has made impossible possible. As i sat in the movie theater wearing my 3D glasses, the movie began and within the very first five minute i had an intuitive feeling that i was going to watch something very profound. And i was not wrong. Life of Pi is based on an Indian boy named Piscine Molitor "Pi" Patel (interesting name with an interesting story) who survived for 227 days in the sea after a shipwreck.

Directed by Ang Lee (won oscar for "Brokeback Mountain") the movie begins when Pi (Irrfan Khan) is around in his 40's living in Canada and is approached by a writer who wants to write a novel on his life and also wishes to "find God" from it. Pi narrates him his story beginning from his childhood when he lived in Pondicherry, India, which used to be under the French when the whole India was under British Raj. Pi was named Piscine Molitor by his father after a famous swimming pool in France, but was constantly made fun of due to his name similar to "pissing". He one day decides to change his name to Pi and from that day he becomes as irrational as the value of Pi. After his father's zoo goes broke, his family decides to move to Canada with all the zoo animals but their ship gets wrecked in the sea and the one that survives is Pi with a Bengal tiger in his lifeboat.

                                                    Irrfan Khan as Pi narrating his story.

                                                                Tabu as Pi's mother.

The 3D use in the movie is completely new unlike any movie i have seen before. The most important part in the movie is 3D itself which is not used in the movie to bring out its special effects, but to actually bring out the story which requires a deep visualization. A 16 year old boy lost in sea, on top of that he is in a boat with a tiger who can eat him any minute. There is a scene in the movie when Pi tells his father 'I saw soul in the tiger's eyes', to which his gets angered and shows him the tiger eat a deer mercilessly, proving his point that a tiger is an animal without a soul. Pi many times disagreed to his fathers morals but now, the only survival skills he has left were taught to him by his father. He never finds himself alone in the sea, he sees the tiger not as his enemy but as his "reason to survive", a reason which keeps him aware of himself. The 16 year old Pi is played by Suraj Sharma, a phenomenal actor whose performance had me astounded. The other fascinating thing was the amazing beauty of the sea that was captured on screen. The sea at night looked like a sheet of stars and in the morning like a velvet blue cloth, and the movie boasts of its astonishing camera work and jaw dropping special effects which made this movie one of a kind experience. I think this is one of the most innovative film of the past few years and sure to grab a whole lot of awards and nominations.

My verdict:
This movie was an astounding experience with a brilliant performance, special effects and story. Close to perfection, this movie is probably the most memorable film of this year.

Who should watch?
The movie is a must watch for everyone in 3D. But you can't enjoy this movie if you don't have any patience. If you go and watch 3D movies expecting them to be like The Avengers, then this is probably not a movie for you.

Movie info.:
Genre - Adventure, Drama
Director - Ang Lee
Stars - Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Tabu, Adil Hussain, Ayush Tandon, Gautam Belur, Rafe Spall
Country - USA
Language - English, Tamil, French
Runtime - 127 minutes

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