`Story of Pi`: Definitely a life time Film experience.

 Rakesh Manchanda

On the recent occasion of hundred years of Indian Cinema, it is a perfect treat to recommend a new adventure film where India grabs the global window called `Life of Pi`. Global theatres have been promoting the trailer of this eagerly awaited film from some time in the past.

Back in India on festival holidays, it is very difficult for any speechless audience to search new words to describe the new compelling excellence this craft succeeds in delivering. For the global audience and cinema lovers it is definitely a holistic feel good treat that knocks your eyes and compels them to meditation. It enters as a new unique visual once a life time experience via eyes first without allowing them to shut and close during the entire two hours 8 minutes entertainment. It sucks inside therapeutically to announce a Wow !. A feel to the body organs that shall wake up and say let swim once more. All the past cast away and shipwrecked rescue films appear old and outsmarted in many ways for the new 3D TV monitor and users enjoying this film.

Pi grows up into a liberal Hindu Business household that runs a Zoo in the French colony and Pondicherry culture of India during recession after World War. As a learner Pi finds himself being taken over by the three religions –Hinduism, Islam and Christianity. He adopts the three faiths in his wish to love God and see the sole creator from the point of each of the said religions. Much to Pi’s disappointment, his family decides to leave India due to better business venture, and decide to go to Canada to settle after selling their Zoo animals. With a twist of events that puts new challenge of experience before education, Pi’s ship gets sunk in the Pacific Ocean, leaving him behind on a small raft with a Bengal Tiger named Richard Parker.

What may impress the audience most is the unique benchmark in shape of story telling experiment with unique multi-choice in the menu of the climax thrown by Oscar awarded winner Director Ang Lee. The film released in several languages has a universal appeal for any 8 years to 80 years old. Craft provokes self interpretation of God, fear, ecology and destiny.

Film zooms around the 16 year old teenager who is shipwrecked and crawls against all odds for self discovery in his destiny. During 227 day rescue journey in a life boat and a raft on the stormy sea and at times a calm Ocean is a masterpiece of modern cinema. Survival relationship between the angry ocean, a Bengal tiger and the unknown new Indian star who does not know how to swim but is eager to discover self awareness adds a new deeper meaning of survival and life.

“You don’t know the strength of your faith until it’s tested”-This dialogue weaves the entire plot from the point when Pi fights for survival in Pacific Ocean. Aim and compulsion of the victim Pi is to train and to tame the ferocious tiger and finally sleep with the enemy in the lifeboat. Be it the time when Pi has to deal with the ferocious big cat and train it to obey his orders, or the time when he has to eat raw fish to kill hunger while violating his faith of a strict vegetarian. Pi’s faith although never inherited from his strict father is tested in every sense of the word which helps in developing his code of conduct. Pi finds him encouraged by his mother to test his faith instead of blindly embracing rational thinking. Hunger, says the desperate shipwrecked lone survivor hero in Life of Pi, “can change everything you think you knew about yourself.” This is a milestone dialogue that shall be remembered by cinema loves for many reasons.

He overcomes the challenges against all odds with minimum survival kit and resources. Overcoming his initial fear against the royal big cat ready to grab him as his supper is commendable. Departing emotions on loosing the trained tiger in the jungle does tease the pet animal lovers. Tiger finally chooses freedom in the jungle and this depicts the brilliance in the climax of the film which may annoy few pet lovers of the animals. Richard Parker the tiger decides to have independence with his own code of conduct then being an assistant and a slave to the superior skills of his young master who had trained him to obey the orders and has saved his life by feeding him with fish each day.

The plot questions about life and death, religion and science while delivering messages put simple. Film provokes the business of spiritual management and splits open the investigating terms and conditions of the insurance companies. after the shipwreck. Holistic business tag gives a hug to life and its survival with another legendary leaf to the old story of the award winning novel with new 3D vehicle of delivery. The 3-D presentation in theatres adds value to the memorable craft and supports the audience to joyfully invest each and every cent during the 128 minutes show which is definitely a life time experience.