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Sunday, March 16, 2014


Novel – Life of Pi- Yann Martel (2001)
Movie – Life of Pi – Ang Lee (2012)
Genre – Fantasy Adventure
Main Characters – A boy (PIscine Patel ), a tiger (Richard Parker) and a life boat.

Piscine Patel (Pi) an Indian presently living in Canada, narrates his story of survival in a ship-wreck at the age of 16 losing his family and being stranded upon in the pacific ocean with a life boat and the Bengal Tiger.

The Plot
Piscine Molitor Patel is named after a swimming pool in France. He was tired of being called “Pissing Patel” and changes his name to Pi (π) Patel. Pi’s father owns a zoo and Pi takes good care of the animals and develops love towards them. He is a Hindu – vegetarian but he is introduced to Islam and Christianity at the age of 12 and he chooses to follow all the three as it is all abt “Loving God”. 

Pi’s father decides to immigrate to Canada so that they can sell the animals at North America. They all board into a cargo ship, bringing the animals also with them. Unfortunately, the ship wrecks. Pi spends 227 days in the Pacific Ocean initially with hyena, zebra, orangutan and finally with the tiger Richard Parker. 

Novel Versus Movie
Here are a few differences which I spotted between the movie and the novel – 
    1. The Opening – 
   Book starts with “This book was born when I was hungry” and some 16 pages of author note.
   Movie starts with “This is a story that will make you believe in God”  (Jumping straight into the story)
    2. Pi in hospital – 
    Book – There is a detailed expression of Pi’s time in hospital after being spotted at the Beach of Mexico. It tells about the love and care, the nurses showed despite language differences.
    Movie – There is a scene where Pi meets only the Japanese Officials who enquire him about the wreck (Climax).
    3. Pi’s girl friend – 
Book- There is no such mention about Pi’s love episodes.
Movie – How on earth will a movie be directed without adding spice of Romance to it? Ha!
    4. Pi’s family – 
Book – Way-through the book, the author hints “The story has a happy ending”
Movie – In the Climax, the writer meets his family when they enter home as Pi introduces his Wife, Children and Pets. (Pleasant Surprise factor) 
    5. Tanker ship at night –
Book – A giant oil tanker comes close to Pi, but doesn’t notice him and quickly disappears
Movie – This never happens.

     This is basically a tale of the survivor, conversing with himself and the Bengal Tiger. It is not so overwhelmingly positive or negative but it is set plainly great. Surviving in the Carnivore island and the Meerkats has a touch of fiction, where in reality it hardly happens.  Pi’s mother narrates him the story of Lord Krishna which is amazingly visualized. 

      An immaculate story of battle between life and death. The narrator through his simple yet clear explanation , attracts the readers/audience. Lessons about Science and Spirituality is worth mentioning. 

      Well, coming next to “This story will make you believe in God” does strike the chord. When pi actually survives from the unknown island, the storm and etc, he prays God and the touch of his body over the sands of Mexico makes one believe, there does exist God, because it is no simple for a man to have survived (227 long days) with an oversized CAT!! 

The sea adventure is very inspiring but it lacks suspense factor, as we all know Pi had survived the wreck and was narrating the story to the author. 

Life of Pi movie is a “Visual Treat”. People who haven’t watched or read the same, I would recommend you to watch the movie first for the better understanding of the story! 

A feast for eyes than a food for thought :)

      Rating 3.5/5


  1. Hey Sounsiee, My first comment on the blog although I give feedback in GTalk. This one made me comment here, such a clean and neat take on the story! Lovely summary and honest review. Way to go! Keep penning!

  2. Srilax!! This is a pleasant start to the day and thanks a lot for encouraging :) Am so happy. .

  3. too good sound, i cant put it in words like u,, u are going pro i must say, u are inspiring me a lot..:) looking forward to more from you :)

  4. Thanks a lot deeps. If not for ur copy of the movie, I would not have landed here reviewing this :)

  5. Life of Pi movie is a “Visual Treat”..

    When I once posted on Facebook "Gravity is a visual treat.." someone commented immediately, "so the movie is crap, and it only looks great?" Honestly, I think Life of Pi(the movie) lacked a lot of things..

  6. "Life of Pi movie is a “Visual Treat”"

    When I once posted on Facebook "Gravity is a visual treat..", one of my friend immediately responded "so you saying the movie is crap, but it looks good?" .. honestly Life of Pi(the movie), lacks a lot of things.!