Note: The current article has been written more than 8 years ago!
(spolier alert!) I’ve had quite a few insights while watching Life of Pi (2012):
- People and nature: Olivian Breda
- “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” (Helen Keller): Olivian Breda
- Richard Parker’s lesson: Olivian Breda
- Beauty: Olivian Breda
- Abundance and scarcity: Olivian Breda
- Caring for the other: Olivian Breda
Still, why don’t I like the movie?
- Because, to me, the movie doesn’t offer the solution with the right way. Sure, it presents a lot of solutions, it’s a good solution-to-be-seen movie. But the way in which the message is sent is not mine. In both “Le notti di Cabiria” and “The grey“, the main characters go through pain & sufference and learn a lesson out of this. They suffer for their ideas.
- In “Life of Pi”, the main character, while under a lot of stress, while under a lot of pain, is doing rather well.
- I am not there. I am not in his fights. I am not in his position. It’s a bit hard for me to resonate with him. I don’t admire the stars. I don’t put the life of a tiger on the same level (or higher) to mine. I don’t fight God that badly.
We don’t connect much. A better option would be to present things, for me, with my own kind of lens. Still, a very nice movie. I just don’t like it. Good script, nice characters, great imagery, nice insights. Not enough. Later edit: what I do like about the movie is the life-and-death scenario. You always wonder who will die next. This is nice, to me. It remembers me, partially, of the two movies I like (see above). But “Life of Pi” takes all these away with its structure – you know, from the way the movie is presented to you, that Pi will live. You know this. Thus, the dilemma is solved.
Later edit: There is a rather successful Romanian movie – The death of Mr. Lăzărescu (2005). I read this about the movie – the title says it all. You know, right from the title, how it’s going to end. Kaput.
In antithesis, the life goes on for ever and ever. But I don’t think that this is the answer – infinity. Or, if it is, it is only part of it. In my opinion, the trick to look at the Pi number is not to consider it as “infinite” – “an infinite set of digits”, but to see it as in the movie – Pi writes Pi number on the blackboard, and has some success with this. In my opinion, the way the movie looks at life is this: Birth – some life (long or short) – death – life after death. Some observations:
- Life can be short or long. This is irrelevant. The main character wants to live, but wants other things also. It’s a continuous paradox. “I must live, but I can die in the same time”.
- Success is important, he wants to live. But not with any cost. He puts some conditions. He wants to live, within some criteria.
- Success, at times, is irrelevant. To some point, it just doesn’t matter if he succeeds or not. He doesn’t care that much if he lives or not.
- There is an after-life. He sees even this as a success – regathering with his family.
- Although very passionate and intense at times, he can also be careless and frugal at times. In paradox.
- “The life of Pi” can mean:
- His writing on the wall, long, but ending, at times. He will stop, sometime.
- The never-ending sequence of numbers after the digit. The life can be 3, but what comes after life is never-ending.
- His life on Earth, or in the Heavens.
- The contradiction between logic (pi) and emotions (life of).