News: Alternative:

Life of Pi

Drama . Adventure . Action

The story of an Indian boy named Pi, a zookeeper's son who finds himself in the company of a hyena, zebra, orangutan, and a Bengal tiger after a shipwreck sets them adrift in the Pacific Ocean.

Actors: Jun Naito , James Saito , Gérard Depardieu , Rafe Spall , Tabu , Adil Hussain , Gautam Belur , Ayush Tandon , Irrfan Khan , Suraj Sharma
Directors: Ang Lee
Country: USA
Add a Review

Olly Richards

To produce a coherent film from Martel's tricky novel would be achievement enough, but Ang Lee has extracted something beautiful, wise and, at times, miraculous.

Matt Mueller
Total Film

A riot of saturated colour and delirious imagination, Ang Lee's adap radiates spirituality. But it's also a simple, thrilling and gently uplifting tale of a boy, a boat and a tiger. Take the plunge.

Rick Groen
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

Every once in a long while, the right director comes across the right project at just the right moment, and things so often discordant fall into perfect harmony.

Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

Is it real? Is this whole story real? I refuse to ask that question. Life of Pi is all real, second by second and minute by minute, and what it finally amounts to is left for every viewer to decide. I have decided it is one of the best films of the year.

Betsy Sharkey
Los Angeles Times

There are always moral crosscurrents in Lee's most provocative work, but so magical and mystical is this parable, it's as if the filmmaker has found the philosopher's stone.

David Edelstein
New York Magazine (Vulture)

Pi has designed his own terrarium to keep from staring directly into the abyss. It's not denial. It's faith in something else: the transformative power of storytelling. The film is transcendent.

Richard Corliss

Pi is a giant leap forward, outward and upward in expanding the resources of the evolving medium of movies. Magical realism was rarely so magical and never before so real.

Todd McCarthy
The Hollywood Reporter

Meticulous care is evident in every aspect of the film. All three actors playing Pi are outstanding.

Steve Persall
Tampa Bay Times

Never has 3-D illusion been used to such pure storytelling effect.

Tasha Robinson
The A.V. Club

The larger messages about spirituality often seem forced, and it's more compelling to focus on Lee's visceral cinematic experience than on the larger, fuzzier messages Martel's story conveys about humanity's connection with God.

Rodrigo Perez
The Playlist

Deeply resonant and soulful, Life Of Pi, is a harrowing journey of survival, self-discovery and connection that both inspires and awes in equal measure.

Justin Chang

This exquisitely beautiful adaptation of Yann Martel's castaway saga has a sui generis quality that's never less than beguiling, even if its fable-like construction and impeccable artistry come up a bit short in terms of truly gripping, elemental drama.

Connie Ogle
Miami Herald

Life of Pi works seamlessly on two levels. With grace, imagination and stunning visual acuity, it explores Martel's twin themes of faith and the power of storytelling. It's also a thrilling action adventure.

Claudia Puig
USA Today

A spectacular high-seas epic that employs technology brilliantly and underscores the power of a vividly told story.

Lawrence Toppman
Charlotte Observer

A character in Yann Martel's novel "Life of Pi" tells us this will be a story to make us believe in God. The film version written by David Magee and directed by Ang Lee may do that – you'll decide for yourself – but it will definitely make you believe in the power of cinema.

Calvin Wilson
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

As enchanting as it is ambitious.

Peter Travers
Rolling Stone

Lee uses 3D with the delicacy and lyricism of a poet. You don't just watch this movie, you live it.

Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly

Lee's bigger theme isn't God or survival, but the awesome adventure of making the imaginary visible, the adventure of making movies.

Eric Kohn

In its finer moments, however, Lee translates the book's wondrous prose into grand visual conceits meant for the big screen. Posited as a story that "will make you believe in god," instead it has the power to confirm one's faith in the cinematic experience.

Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal

Mr. Lee's film is stronger as a visual experience - especially in 3-D - than an emotional one, but it has a final plot twist that may also change what you thought you knew about the ancient art of storytelling.

Bob Mondello

The script I did question; it takes awhile to get going, and it feels strangely flat at the very end. But in between, Lee is very skillfully employing cinema's most advanced digital techniques in the service of an adventure yarn that is gloriously old-fashioned - and often just glorious.

Mike Scott
New Orleans Times-Picayune

The result is a movie built upon big ideas -- and timely ones, too, delivering a message of understanding in this frustrating age of great intolerance -- but also a great story and, thanks to Lee, a wonderfully satisfying cinematic journey.

Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News

Though the film's setup trudges and its closing is too pat, that hour or so on the raft is something special, and few would dive into the story's soul as Lee does.

Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic

The look of the film is jaw-dropping at times, beautiful to behold. If the story... can't quite keep pace with the look of the film (and, alas, it can't) it will take you awhile to notice.

Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out New York

The movie works on a bedrock level that many ostensible action films forget. Let New Age viewers in your crowd get misty-eyed - there's plenty here for anyone.

Tom Shone
The Guardian

Hollywood has been waiting for this movie. Get ready for the year of the Tiger.

Marc Mohan
Portland Oregonian

It proves the power of a good story, both to entertain us and to allow us to process unpleasant truths.

Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer

Much as I was moved by the film, I have one reservation and one warning. The framing device of the older Pi recounting his story to the author (which worked so well in Martel's novel) is intrusive and significantly detracts from the story.

Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor

Lee may, in the end, be too balanced a filmmaker to give Life of Pi the extra spin of lyric delirium it sorely needs. It's a sane movie about an essentially deranged situation.

Lou Lumenick
New York Post

Even at his best, Sharma doesn't have sufficient acting chops - or enough Hanks-like charisma - to hold the screen alone for more than 70 minutes with the CGI Richard Parker (as well as a zebra, a hyena, an orangutan and a rat who quickly become food for the ravenous tiger).

James Berardinelli

Life of Pi is a curious juxtaposition of the mundane and the majestic; a film that strives for something grander than what it perhaps achieves.

Ann Hornaday
Washington Post

Life of Pi is spellbinding while it lasts. Lee's film can be appreciated as many things -- a post-Darwinian meditation on coexistence as the key to survival, a reflection on the spiritual nature of suffering and transcendence, a beguiling bait-and-switch on the vagaries of belief itself.

Ty Burr
Boston Globe

Reducing Life of Pi to a homily does it a disservice. Lee gives the framing story short shrift and concentrates on visualizing the inner tale with as much detail and power as possible.

Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune

Life of Pi, Yann Martel's beautiful little book about a young man and the sea and a tiger, has transformed into a big, imposing and often lovely 3-D experience.

R. Kurt Osenlund
Slant Magazine

The second act shifts the film from a lazy and comfy litany of introductions to a riveting fantasia of pure cinema, wherein Lee paints an oft-wordless picture of nature's harshness and grace, the perfect arena for Pi to have a Christ-like coming of age.

Marjorie Baumgarten
Austin Chronicle

Life of Pi, ironically, soars when it confines itself to land and sea; when it grasps for the celestial, the film goes beyond its reach.

Alison Willmore

The story of Pi and Richard Parker already has the clean simplicity of a myth and really doesn't require significant elaboration, but following in the footsteps of the source material, the film provides elaboration anyway, demonstrating a condescension to the audience that dulls the spectacle it punctuates.

Vadim Rizov
Boxoffice Magazine

Ang Lee's adaptation of Yann Martel's mega-selling novel Life Of Pi is technically adept, mildly engaging and thematically pedantic.

Dana Stevens

The movie's energy peters out in a series of book-club conversations about divine will, the power of storytelling, and the resilience of the human spirit. The ending's pious dullness is enough to make you wish you were back on that lifeboat, where the most pressing questions weren't spiritual but gastronomic: What's on the menu for lunch, and what can I do to make sure it isn't me?

Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle

It's a slow-moving fable, with enough story and substance to make for one amazing Imax short. Instead the material is stretched beyond its limits into a long, repetitive and often stagnant 127-minute feature film.

A.O. Scott
The New York Times

The movie invites you to believe in all kinds of marvelous things, but it also may cause you to doubt what you see with your own eyes - or even to wonder if, in the end, you have seen anything at all.

Andrew O'Hehir

I felt like I'd been invited to a seven-course dinner, and all seven turned out to be cake – and then the host insisted on delivering a lecture about how cake would bring me closer to God.

Nick Schager
Village Voice

Life of Pi manages occasional spiritual wonder through its 3-D visuals but otherwise sinks like a stone.

Add Soundtrack

1. Pi's Lullaby ( Performer: Bombay Jayashri )

2. Sous Le Ciel De Paris ( Writer: Yann Martel )

3. Raga Ahir Bhairav ( Writer: Yann Martel )

4. Anandi's Dance ( Writer: Yann Martel )

5. Tum Aa Gaye Ho Noor Aa ( Performer: Lata Mangeshkar, Rahul Dev Burman, and Kishore Kumar )

6. Tiruppukal ( Writer: Yann Martel )

7. Tsimtsum ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

8. First Night, First Day ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

9. Back to the World ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

10. Pi and Richard Parker ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

11. Piscine Molitor Patel / Sous le Ciel de Paris ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

12. The Island ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

13. Christ in the Mountains ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

14. Orphans ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

15. The Whale ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

16. Appa's Lesson ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

17. Which Story Do You Prefer? ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

18. Set Your House in Order ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

19. Meeting Krishna ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

20. Tiger Training ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

21. Tiger Vision ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

22. The Second Story ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

23. The Deepest Spot On Earth ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

24. I'm Ready Now ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

25. Thank You Vishnu for Introducing Me to Christ / Raga Ahir Bhairav ( Performer: Mychael Danna & Pandit Jasray Itunes )

26. Anandi ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

27. Death of the Zebra ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

28. Pondicherry ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

29. Richard Parker ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

30. Leaving India ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

31. God Storm ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

32. Skinny Vegetarian Boy ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

33. Flying Fish ( Performer: Mychael Danna Itunes )

To Top