Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Film Review: Life of Pi

Its always worrisome to come into viewing a film after having read a book that it is based upon.  Life of Pi is not a book one needs to be concerned about being disappointed with.

About as "true" to is source material as any novel derived film I have seen, Life of Pi is beautiful, thought provoking and moving.  Director Ang Lee knows his pacing and story setup, spending sufficient time going into the titular character's Hindu, Christian, Muslim and Rationalist upbringing.  Other directors might have even just cut this background and focused on the more "exciting" portion of the story--the shipwreck and subsequent drifting aboard a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger.  That would have completely changed the point of the novel and cheapened the work entirely.

The film itself is beautifully shot and colored--likely one of the crispest, cleanest and vivid films in existence.  I did not view it in 3D nor would I want to.  The computer imagery--of which the film is chock full with much of the ocean scenery and creatures existing only with the memory of a computer and yet as lifelike and any I've seen.  The animals have more emotion and depth than most human actors.

The Life of Pi novel is still worth reading and if I had a choice of only consuming one or the other, I would still take the written word over the flickering screen as it allows the mind to dig into the questions author Yann Martel poses to the reader about God and existence whereas the film leaves the questioning for only after you have finished the work.  Regardless the film is worth watching as you don't find many films this deep that are so beautiful and so much fun.

No comments: