Google+

Life of Pi (DVD REVIEW)

Life of Pi51gEPkvLh+L
DVD Review by Kam Williams

Headline: Oscar-Winning Seafaring Tale of Survival Available on DVD

Pi Patel (Suraj Sharma) was raised Hindu before converting to Catholicism and Islam all on his own. The spiritually-promiscuous, 16 year-old’s parents reacted differently to the changes in the boy’s unorthodox behavior which included going to church and praying facing east five times a day.

His frustrated father (Adil Hussain) warned, “You cannot follow three religions at the same time,” while his more tolerant mother (Tabu) conceded that “Science cannot teach what is in here,” touching her heart. Both shrug it off as probably just a passing phase, since they’re busy planning the big move of the family household and zoo from India to Canada.

Then, tragedy strikes en route, when their cargo ship capsizes and sinks in the middle of the Pacific, leaving sole human survivor Pi in a lifeboat with a zebra, an orangutan, a hyena and a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. Will the precocious believer remain true to his lofty ideals while having to play the faith-testing hand he’s suddenly been dealt?

That’s the pressing question posed in Life of Pi, a visually-captivating tale of spirituality and survival from this year’s Oscar-winning director Ang Lee. Garnering a quartet of Academy Awards, the majestic masterpiece unfolds against a backdrop of exquisite seascapes that look like glorious, hand-painted, pastel panoramas.

From the point of the shipwreck forward the picture is basically a one-man show, ala Tom Hanks in Cast Away (2000). But instead of talking to a soccer ball, the protagonist here has to figure out how to coexist peacefully in very close quarters with a tiger that would just as soon make him its next meal.

The burden of carrying the film falls on the shoulders of first-time actor Suraj Sharma, who does a magnificent job of conveying the existential angst of the beleaguered, ever-exasperated title character. But given the oceanic endurance theme, the picture still feels more like the Hitchcock classic, Lifeboat (1944), than Cast Away.

This remarkably richly-textured adaptation will undoubtedly be a hit with fans of the Yann Martel best-seller upon which it’s based, as well as with anyone merely looking for an entertaining movie. It might be more important to note that during an opening sequence of this flashback flick, we’re essentially informed that what is about to unfold is a story that will make you believe in God.

For all its religious pretensions, however, the thrust of the production revolves less around any overt attempt to convert disbelievers than around Ang Lee’s brilliant use of the screen as a cinematic canvas to narrate a compelling yarn for the ages. Crouching tiger, hidden Siegfried! (sans Roy)

Excellent (4 stars)
Rated PG for mature themes and scary action sequences
In English, French and Japanese with subtitles
Running time: 123 minutes
Distributor: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
DVD Extras: None.

To see a trailer for Life of Pi, visit:
http://www.youtube.com/user/thelifeofpimovie?v=mX2HBsHbNZM

To order a copy of Life of Pi on DVD, visit:  http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B005LAIIHG/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

Entertainment

For movies opening August 18, 2017

  OPENING THIS WEEK Kam's Kapsules Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun by Kam Williams For movies opening August 18, 2017 BIG BUDGET FILMS The Hitman's Bodyguard (R for graphic violence and pervasive profanity) Unlikely-buddies comedy about an ace bodyguard (Ryan Reynolds) who grudgingly helps a notorious assassin (Samuel … [Read More its Good for You...]

Books

Book of Black Heroes

  Book of Black Heroes Political Leaders Past and Present by Gil L. Robertson, IV Foreword by Myrlie Evers-Williams Just Us Books Paperback, $12.95 80 pages ISBN: 978-1-933491-21-9 Book Review by Kam Williams “The first African-American political leaders began to serve following the Civil War...Known as Reconstruction, this period … [Read More its Good For You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the … [Read More its Good for You...]

Real Estate

Real Estate: Refinancing Rates on the Rise in 2017

  Real Estate: Refinancing Rates on the Rise in 2017 by Amy Lignor   The term ‘meteoric rise’ usually applies to something fun. Think: A Hollywood actor who has been ‘discovered.’) Unfortunately, when it comes to this article, ‘meteoric rise’ is something that will not bring a smile to one’s face. To put it simply, if you wish to refinance … [Read More its Good for You...]

Lifestyle

The “King” Will Take Center Stage at the 2017 Wildlife Conservation Expo

  The “King” Will Take Center Stage at the 2017 Wildlife Conservation Expo by Amy Lignor   Each and every year the Wildlife Conservation Expo is held to address situations out there that are harming our world and its animal inhabitants. This time around, WCN’s annual Fall Wildlife Conservation Expo in October, will be focusing on … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

How Bassmaster Pro Edwin Evers Adjusts the Auto Settings on His Sonar

  How Bassmaster Pro Edwin Evers Adjusts the Auto Settings on His Sonar  by Edwin Evers When it comes to electronics, a question I get asked a lot is, “How do you customize your fish finder settings at the beginning of a day on the water?” The short answer is, “I don’t.”   You might think that a guy who makes his living with a … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

College Football Arriving Soon!

  College Football Arriving Soon! by Amy Lignor   Ask any college football fan and they will tell you that it seems like an eternity waiting for the season to begin. But, have no fear, the kick-off to the college season is almost here, with Colorado State and Oregon State hitting the field on Saturday, August 26th at 2:30 p.m. ET. On … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Book of Black Heroes

  Book of Black Heroes Political Leaders Past and Present by Gil L. Robertson, IV Foreword by Myrlie Evers-Williams Just Us Books Paperback, $12.95 80 pages ISBN: 978-1-933491-21-9 Book Review by Kam Williams “The first African-American political leaders began to serve following the Civil War...Known as Reconstruction, this period … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Going Back in Time on the Ultimate Steamboat Vacation

  Going Back in Time on the Ultimate Steamboat Vacation by Amy Lignor   Many people love taking a cruise. But it is the river cruise on that glorious steamboat that not only offers all the benefits a big ocean liner offers, but also creates a more personalized, intimate vacation experience. It is a unique recipe: being able to witness … [Read More its Good for You...]