Life of Pi

One of my favorite things about reading a book is being able to create a visualization with all of the characters and settings in the story in my own mind, which has limitless ability to create and imagine. It’s really cool to see some books adapted to the big screen and get to see someone else’s ideas of what each character and place looks like in grand scale, but in the past there have been technical limitations, or a lack of advancements that we have available today. Well, that has definitely changed today.

A young man who survives a disaster at sea is hurtled into an epic journey of adventure and discovery. While cast away, he forms an unexpected connection with another survivor. . . a fearsome Bengal tiger.

It has not taken very long for 3D to find it’s place in the world after Avatar, but never in history has a movie in 3D looked this good. It’s not the 3D that makes this movie so unbelievably gorgeous, but the its compliment to the stunning CGI and choreography. At least four times throughout the film I found myself saying “This is the most beautiful shot I have ever seen in film”. The vision created here by the masterful Ang Lee is something unprecedented. The colors, the scenery, the animated tiger, the contrasts, all just incredible. There are dozens of shots that will stay in your mind for a long time after you see this film. This is the visual spectacle of the decade.

Lee has found a lot of success with scenic, out-doorsy films like Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and his Oscar winning direction of Brokeback Mountain. Lee is actually the only winner of that award that hasn’t been Caucasian [how’s that for the possibly elites and snobby awards?].

The film stars first time actor Suraj Sharma, who actually never even intended to try out for the part, only going with his brother to the auditions and eventually landing the role. He was pretty good, getting the chance to show some real potential and range. The acting, along with the story, is not meant to lead the film, though, and they don’t. Don’t get me wrong, the story is fun and exciting, but its nothing that you take home with you and and think about or treasure. The whole product certainly is, however.

My Rating

4/4 – In the book [and the film], Pi says that his story will make you believe in God. Ang Lee and his visual team might have done just that in Life of Pi, which is the visual spectacle of the decade.


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