I saw this movie on the deck of a cruise ship during spring break in the Caribbean. Not exactly the ideal spot to watch a movie about a boat sinking in the ocean! But I loved the movie so much that when I got back from my break, I immediately began reading the book Life of Pi, by Yann Martel.
Watching the movie immediately drew me in to Pi’s world, and I just had to read the book! Let me just give you a taste of what this phenomenon is all about. Life of Pi tells the story of an Indian boy named Pi, who loves animals and God. His family decides to move to Canada, and on the way, their ship sinks leaving Pi on a lifeboat with a hyena, zebra, orangutan, and a giant Bengal tiger. The second half of the book is about Pi’s struggles to survive in the middle of the ocean. Pi learns to abandon his vegetarian ways, train the tiger, and become a master shipman.
The story is dripping with imagery that is so vivid it will make your mouth water. Life of Pi is so powerful that I had dreams about giant whales, tigers, islands, lifeboats, and sunsets for practically a week! I have such an appreciation for Yann Martel because of Life of Pi. He is the most amazing author ever, and definitely deserves all of the awards he received!
In the movie Life of Pi, however, the ending is such a Hollywood ending that I feel bad for Yann Martel. Yann Martel specifically wrote the ending to show the brutal truth of life to the readers, and if you want to find out his lesson, then you’re just going to have to read it yourself! If I personally was directing the movie, I wouldn’t dream of changing the ending, because that is the whole point of the story. However, Ang Lee did do an amazing job because the scenery was beautifully artistic, casting was perfect, and computer graphics were out of this world, though, so I did still really love the movie, just not as much as the novel.
Anyways, I know that this review doesn’t even begin to express how amazing this story is, and it cannot possibly live up to Yann Martel in any shape or form. Life of Pi is the most amazing book I’ve ever read– literally, I found myself bawling my eyes out at some points! I want more than anything for everyone to read this book! You will never see tigers, humans, the ocean, animals, religions, or life the same ever again. Yann Martel strikes you with so much wonder and awe it is unbelievably breathtaking.
Please feel free to comment below as I know there will be many since this is such a renowned book!
-Kelsey H., 9th grade