Life of Pi
Posted 15 June 2012 - 08:12 AM
And I'm curious to see what Ang Lee will do. He's made some failures, but he's nothing if not a director who will give it his all.
Posted 15 June 2012 - 11:16 AM
You guys have to be kidding at me.
This looks horrible. And this is from someone who thinks highly of the book.
Everything about the clip is wrong. The CG tiger is horrible. The flying fish are terrible and unbelievable and facile and have none of the importance they have in the book.
They honestly couldn't have made it any worse.
Edit: To be specific here. Yartel's great accomplishment with the first part of the book is making us believe that a boy could survive in a lifeboat with a tiger.
In less than two minutes, that feeling is totally stripped away by Ang's film. We don't believe it. We can't. All we are given is a cartoon Indian and a cartoon tiger and sentimentality.
Did you see it in 3D?
I read the book years ago and also loved it. I didn't view the trailer as being cartoonish as much as a little surreal and otherwordly..... like the book. For me the tiger had a bit of this surreal feel but still seemed real enough. As to the flying fishes importance, we've only seen a part of the scene and don't know everything that the films going to do with it.
Edited by Attica, 15 June 2012 - 03:20 PM.
Posted 15 June 2012 - 06:49 PM
I'll give the film to be chance, but I honestly expect a failure of The Last Airbender proportions here, and I can't imagine the 'we're only going to show scenes' marketing thing will be very successful. It's certainly tempting to think it's the studio's way of hiding how much of a failure the film looks like (at least on a commercial level).
And I can't really ever sanction the integration of human actors with 3D characters in this sort of context . . . it ends up being as stupid as Alvin and the Chipmunks or any such projects.
If they wanted surreal they should have made an animated film . . . if they wanted realism they should have found a way to either work with actual tigers, or used puppets, etc. Something tangible, though.
On a non-CG (although related level), the actor playing Pi here looks pretty bad. His reaction to the tiger was stereotypical.
I can only pray the scene works better within the context of the film than it does here.
Posted 15 June 2012 - 11:35 PM
:I'll give the film to be chance, but I honestly expect a failure of The Last Airbender proportions here,
Could very well be. It seems like a hard book to put to film, and I expect the book's fans would be pretty demanding, wanting a well made sophisticated film.
:and I can't imagine the 'we're only going to show scenes' marketing thing will be very successful. It's certainly tempting to think it's the studio's way of hiding how much of a failure the film looks like (at least on a commercial level).
Like mentioned above, the marketing might not reach out past the book's fans. I might be wrong on this but I'd wonder if showing a particular scene like that shows a certain confidence in the film. I guess that remains to be seen though.
Edited by Attica, 15 June 2012 - 11:38 PM.
Posted 26 July 2012 - 03:03 AM
The whole movie looks like a video game.
It really makes you wish someone would have had the guts to do this as an animated film . . . why bother with live-action when the tiger is only going to look like a really bad CG model anyway?
Really it's too bad. Bits of it look magical, but I think I'll just have hard time getting past how fake everything looks.
Posted 26 July 2012 - 07:53 AM
Posted 22 August 2012 - 04:23 PM
The film is visually "beautiful, absolutely beautiful", he said, but it felt to him, he said, like "Ang Lee directing Castaway as written by Kirk Cameron or Deepak Chopra.
"It's definitely not mindless entertainment," he said, and yet "it feels like such a proselytizer for religion...it felt like it was pushing religion."
On the back of the fill-out form there was a question that asked "how spiritual are you as an individual and how often do you attend church?"
I have not read the book, so I have no idea how any of those comments would square with that. It's always possible the adaptation has skewed things in some sort of direction like that, though.
Posted 22 August 2012 - 04:36 PM
So, I guess it could be fair to say it pushes the overall concept of religion, but not any specific religious tradition.
Posted 28 September 2012 - 02:13 PM
Posted 28 September 2012 - 03:34 PM
I'm listening to Anne Thompson gush about this film, and in so doing identify herself as someone who was raised by atheists, found Christianity on her own, but who now considers herself a "humanist." I've cited her on this board before as a self-identified Christian, but based on this podcast, I'd say she no longer identifies with the faith.
Life of Pi Seeks Fox Green Light with Ang Lee Directing in 3-D
Gabler and the filmmakers are lining up a big budget well north of $70 million for a 3-D magical fantasy adventure crammed with visual effects. There’s a shipwreck, the ship sinks, and a teenage boy is launched overboard and climbs into a life raft with a zebra, hyena and a tiger. There are many CG animals (whales, fish, meercats) plus ocean and atmosphere. “It has a gigantic visual effects component,” says Gabler. “You can’t put a live tiger in a boat with a child. It has elements of Castaway, when the kid is alone in the boat. You don’t need language to convey what’s on the screen. We need to make the movie for the whole world.”
Anne Thompson, April 28
Edited by Christian, 28 September 2012 - 03:34 PM.
Posted 19 November 2012 - 06:17 PM
Lee has filmed it with such moment-by-moment physical detail and so bounteous a celebration of the natural world that "Life of Pi" becomes one of the great adventure films.
Yup. The story is, at heart, a lie, I believe. But the filmmaking and the storytelling are marvelous. I tried to capture both of these thoughts in my review, but I think it comes off as negative. Still, if you're not prone to having your religious beliefs undone by a movie, this is one to see. It's really something!
Posted 20 November 2012 - 05:47 AM
:Yup. The story is, at heart, a lie, I believe. But the filmmaking and the storytelling are marvelous. I tried to capture both of these thoughts in my review, but I think it comes off as negative. Still, if you're not prone to having your religious beliefs undone by a movie, this is one to see. It's really something!
Christian have you read the book? I ask this because I'm wondering how close the movie is to the book in its themes. The strange thing for me was that even though the book could be considered to have pluralistic religious themes that weren't consistent with Christianity, I didn't find that it was quite saying that. The theme seemed to be more that all humanity was on a spiritual quest a shown in their religion, then that all religions were a way to God. If that makes sense.
Edited by Attica, 28 November 2012 - 04:20 AM.
Posted 20 November 2012 - 09:58 AM
I agree that the film is more about spritual questing than it is about whether orthodox Christianity is wrong, but Pi's choices aren't those of a Christian. I expect people to take what they want to take from the film in terms of the message.
My point in this thread is that, as a film, it's pretty wondrous stuff. I want to take my older kids to see it, just to experience it, although I worry that they might be troubled by some of the message.
Posted 20 November 2012 - 12:02 PM
Posted 20 November 2012 - 12:56 PM
Pi himself is infused with a godliness that knows no doctrinal limits.
The Hindu deities “were like superheroes to me,” he recalls, and at a tender age he began collecting heroes from other faiths, an all-around holiness fan reluctant to declare a rooting interest in any particular team. He likes them all. After receiving a quick précis of the Gospels from a kindly priest, Pi offers up a prayer that summarizes his amiable, inclusive approach to the notoriously divisive subject of theology: “Thank you, Vishnu, for introducing me to Christ.”
No problem! He will go on to embrace Islam and study kabbalah. Thousands of years of sectarian conflict, it seems, can be resolved with a smile and a hushed, reverent tone of voice.
“If you believe in everything, you will end up not believing in anything at all,” warns Pi’s dad, who is committed to the supremacy of reason and who is, as rationalists often are in the imaginations of the devout, a bit of a grouch about it. But this piece of skeptical paternal wisdom identifies a serious flaw in “Life of Pi,” which embraces religion without quite taking it seriously, and is simultaneously about everything and very little indeed. Instead of awe, it gives us “awww, how sweet.” ...
What is and isn’t real — what stories can be believed and why — turns out to be an important theme of “Life of Pi,” albeit one that is explored with the same glibness that characterizes the film’s pursuit of spiritual questions.
I believe that David Magee's screenplay is the best possible adaptation of Yann Martel's novel, but the problems I have begin with the book, and they've been carried over to the movie, completely intact and just as problematic. This is one of the most striking cases I've ever seen of the craftsmanship of a film being at total odds with the text itself. I love how the film tells the story, but I don't like the story. ... For much of the running time, it is an overwhelming visceral experience. Lee's use of 3D in the film is remarkable, and as a theatrical experience, it's hard to argue with the impact. But it is also hard to argue that the film isn't also frustrating and flawed on a fundamental level, one that bothers me far more than the visuals dazzle me.
Edited by Christian, 20 November 2012 - 12:59 PM.
Posted 20 November 2012 - 01:05 PM
: I expect people to take what they want to take from the film in terms of the message.
Having not seen the film and so at this point judging only from the book I think this is a fairly accurate statement. I found some value in the book and yet I can also see that a person with a more pluralistic view could read the book through this lense and run with that view.