Film Review: Life of Pi

Ang Lee’s Life of Pi is a sumptuous looking adventure. The director has successfully brought the novel to the big screen.

A writer travels to Canada to meet Pi Patel, who apparently has quite a story to tell. The tale begins when Pi is a young boy in Pondicherry, India. The son of a zoo keeper, Pi is about to embark on an adventure…

Life of Pi seems perfect for a Christmas release. A film suitable for family viewing which mixes fantasy and adventure. It provides perhaps an anecdote to what could be perceived as the overt fantasy offerings of the last decade or so, with Pirates of the Caribbean, Lord of the Rings and the like. Furthermore, given that it is based on Yann Martel’s best-selling novel, it is likely to have even more of an appeal to adults over younger viewers.

Life of Pi excels in its storytelling. The bookend frame set up allows for the narrator to be present throughout. For those who do not know much about the story, this works doubly well as there is a sense of anticipation of what the adventure entails. The film is a bit too long, but that is the only real negative overall.

The theme of faith and belief runs throughout the film. In the earlier section, the views of Pi’s parents balance out, taking opposite ends of the spectrum. Nonetheless, Life of Pi is unequivocal in its promotion of faith. Rather than this being of a organised religion kind, belief in the film takes on a more spiritual edge.

Lee’s use of colour creates some memorable imagery. Visually, Life of Pi is a treat. The effects are good, particularly with the tiger. Suraj Sharma delivers a strong performance as the adult Pi. He is believable as the protagonist, with his performance indispensible to many scenes.

Although it could have been trimmed a little, Life of Pi is a solid adventure film.

Stuff To Look At

New trailers for Iron Man 3 and Playing for Keeps and a live stream from the Royal World Premiere of Skyfall are featured here for your viewing pleasure…


Above is a live stream from the Royal World Premiere of Skyfall, which begins at 5pm (GMT). All the stars of the film are expected to attend, along with a host of other celebrities. Skyfall is released on 26th October 2012.

Iron Man 3

After the enormous success of Avengers Assemble, next up on the Marvel roster is Iron Man 3. Robert Downey Jr. and Gwyneth Paltrow return for the next instalment of the Iron Man series. The film, directed by Shane Black is due for release on 26th April 2013.

Playing for Keeps

Playing for Keeps boasts a stellar cast which includes Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Dennis Quaid and Catherine Zeta-Jones.  The film looks like a standard romantic comedy, but it may hold some surprises. Playing for Keeps is due for release on 1st January 2013, an ideal release for light, non-committal post-Christmas viewing.

Life of Pi

Ang Lee directs Life of Pi, based on Yann Martel’s bestselling novel. Above is a short clip from the film. Due to be released in 3D, Life of Pi‘s visuals are immediately attractive. The film will be released on 20th December 2012.

Rust and Bone

I am disappointed to have missed Rust and Bone at the BFI London Film Festival this year. Rust and Bone won the Best Film Award this past weekend, and has been receiving good reviews. Above is a brief clip from the film. Rust and Bone will be released on 2nd November 2012.

Cloud Atlas

Cloud Atlas is an ensemble piece featuring six different stories. The film stars Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugo Weaving, Susan Sarandon and Hugh Grant. Above is a featurette about the film featuring the cast and crew. Cloud Atlas is due for release on 22nd February 2013.