[image from Google Images]
I had to do a post about Life of Pi. I hadn't read the book and didn't even know much about the film when I saw it - other than there was a tiger, and I'd vaguely heard that the book was amazing.
Well, I just have to commend both the author Yann Martell and the film produced for bringing me this masterpiece that had me laughing, in hysterical tears, and feeling thoroughly enlightened at the end. I'm an atheist but I loved that this little boy was so adventurous and sought knowledge of all these religions as a way of explaining his reality.
The end of the story made perfect sense to my beliefs. The two stories of his shipwreck survival was that the phatasmagorical tale which included lands he'd never seen, and a mercurial relationship with this tiger was the story he preferred, the story many preferred over the distressing version where he saw his mother die. The way I interpreted it was that god was his survival in the ocean - and he brought him this magical world to explore and this tiger that somehow kept him company, as well as alive. He prefers this story, as he prefers to believe in god because this belief is what got him through it. But he realises that perhaps reality doesn't exactly work that way.
As an atheist, this is pretty much my belief. God exists to those who believe in him, and I am glad he does, I know many people to whom god is an unrelenting power of strength. To me, god does not exist, I find my beliefs in other places like nature, science and love.
On another note, after I saw the film, I learnt from my usual googling of how well the film industry treats its animal actors, that surprisingly, many of the animal scenes were computer rendered. No endangered Bengal Tiger needed to be on set for this film - a few photographs were sufficient to computer generate the animal scenes in the entire movie. And frankly I couldn't tell, the animal scenes were so real, there wasn't a moment I thought through my tears "this poor dying tiger looks a little photoshopped". Now, I can be a master of photoshop when I need to be, but the idea of "photoshopping" for filmscreen seems like an unfathomable amount of great technology coupled with great talent.
I know The Hobbit too used some computer generated animal scenes. But I am still disappointed for those 27 animals that died due to lack of sufficient care, on a budget that could have easily guaranteed their safety and comfort.
And here is a movie all about animals with far fewer dollars to spend who managed to get it right - and still win its prizes and accolades. Very well deserved. I'm now reading the book.