This drama, based on a true story, certainly does have an emotional ending. After a slowish start, the pace did pick up in the middle section. But I found the narrative a little dis-jointed towards the end. I knew the entire story prior to seeing this film, so the element of surprise was removed for me. There some several scenes which were perhaps too drawn out, and one scene which was supposed to be emotional, somehow wasn't. I think that the narrative could have even been stronger and deeper. But overall it is both an entertaining and important story. D & B
AAN GGND AACTAW
For me, this was always an under the radar movie. The trailer, the posters and promotional materials that I barely consumed pointed me to believe this was just "one more drama". What brought this movie to my attention were its collection of four Golden Globes nominations. As an award season enthusiast, predictor and, may I say, connoisseur, i jumped at the first opportunity to go see this acclaimed movie. And actually, it kind of blew me away! The first half of it is queerly insightful as it depicts the world through the eyes of young Saroo. In this kind of movies with a very strong biopic component, I'm always afraid the filmmaker will just scrape the childhood part and jump right to the money-making star power but newcomer Garth Davis takes his sweet time in it, keeping for a whole hour his shots close to the child, gracefully detailing his wonder and his watchful, hypersensitive view of the world. And, the actor who plays young Saroo, Sunny Pawar, gives a standout performance (best one in the movie), carrying the whole half. Rooney Mara is unsurprisingly flawless and the score is splendorous which should translate to an Oscar nom. Despite all this, when we pass the half-way mark, the movie becomes standard, as it resorts to Americanized filmmaking devices which is absent from the previous almost "European indie" kind of vibe. The performances are all very solid though I don't feel that neither Dev nor Nicole should have been nominated for a Golden Globe (and I adore Nicole!), and, though it's based on real life, the way the hero resolves his conflict feels too convenient and the reveal is conventional. Ultimately, we spend too little time with grown Saroo, so in the end we don't feel the emotional journey as much as we should. Also, a fade to black should be regarded as something special, only to be used when it's strictly necessary.This film uses and abuses them, and they become annoying. A fade to black, unless necesis lazy editing and directing so they are to be avoided. Still, the movie has something deep to say about unconventional families and coming back to our rooots!