The Gist: Pi Patel is recounting his life story for a curious writer. The most fascinating tale of all concerns the time when his family's zoo was forced to close and Pi's father decided to move family and zoo animals to Canada. They boarded a ship for the long trip, but a storm sank it and Pi ended up on a lifeboat with a zebra, an orangutan, a hyena, and a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. Stranded at sea for weeks, fighting for survival, he had plenty of time to think back on his life, his beliefs, his hopes, and his dreams.
Life of Pi was hailed as one of the best movies of the year primarily because of the eye popping, incredibly realistic visual effects it showcases, among which the tiger's is the crown achievement.
The visual effects are so amazing, they won the Oscar, along with cinematography, score, and director Ang Lee, who took home his second Best Director Oscar after his win for Brokeback Mountain.
The Bottom Line: Life of Pi is a well made, entertaining movie that is worth watching, even though it didn't particularly impress me much, other than for its production values. The story per se was a bit too tinged with religious overtones, although it's understandable that one would look to God for help if stranded at sea with little hope of salvation.