Grade • A-
DVD • “Which story do you prefer?” asks the adult Pi (Irrfan Khan) at the end of “Life of Pi.” It’s a philosophical question worth pondering after seeing director Ang Lee’s wondrous adaptation of Yann Martel’s supposedly unfilmable novel.
The story, ostensibly, follows teen Pi (played winningly by newcomer Suraj Sharma) as he, his zookeeper father (Adil Hussein) and their family leave India for Canada.
But the cargo ship carrying the family and their zoo animals is hit by storms and sinks, taking the family, crew and many animals with it. Pi survives on a lifeboat, his only company a ferocious Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.
With Claudio Miranda’s sumptuous cinematography and Mychael Danna’s evocative score (both Oscar winners, along with Lee’s direction and the stunning visual effects), “Life of Pi” paints a beautiful portrait of survival, while raising intriguing questions about the nature of God and the power of storytelling.