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Movie review: ‘Lion’

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We have all experienced that panic you feel when you turn around in the grocery store and your mother or father is not standing there anymore. You run around the store frantically trying to find them, accidentally calling every woman with the same color hair, “mom.” The word mom becomes so universal it no longer holds the sentiment it did when you called for her.

Lion takes that panic and visualizes it on screen. A little boy, Soroo, is lost in a train station, unable to articulate who his mother is, where his mother is located or where he himself has come from. We may not have been lost for 25 years of our lives, but that panic and feeling of loss is something so terribly universal and beautifully presented in this film.

The emotional connection that brings viewers closer to Soroo’s story is what makes this film worthy of its Oscar nod. It capitalizes on loss, separation and how those two can bind together to make something so much more worthwhile and stronger.

The first half of the film takes a look at Soroo, played by Sunny Pawar, and his life as a young boy. The beautiful scenery and classic Indian iconography set the stage for the young boy and his situation. His mother labors by carrying rocks to make money for her boys, who spend their time scavenging for scraps and lost money.

Although Soroo lives a minimal lifestyle and receives very little from anyone but himself, he and his siblings live a full life, filled with love and devotion. After having been living on his own, lost for two months, young Soroo is adopted by an Australian family. The second half of the movie takes a look at Soroo 20 years later, played by Dev Patel.

Although his new family loves him very much, Soroo still feels very lost without his home. This film encapsulates that yearning for the past, family and love in a way that most other films have only attempted. Patel captures the heartache one would feel yearning for a life that was stolen from him by mistake.

Director Garth Davis was able to take a broken family and mend them in this lump-in-the-throat film. The film is able to act as a beacon of hope for separated families, no matter how that separation came about. This film is a representation of love and devotion.

The beautiful cinematography captured the intimacy of Soroo’s situation, and the fact that the film was based on a true story made it even more important to capture that emotion. Davis decided then to include real footage at the end of the film, which added to the emotional roller coaster.

This is a must-see movie. Not only has it been nominated for an Oscar, but it is strikingly beautiful as a film all on its own. It stands out among the other Oscar films and provides audiences with that hopeful happy ending that a lot of the others don’t include.

Love has no walls. Love has no borders. Love crosses technology. Love crosses the world.

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The news site of UNC Wilmington
Movie review: ‘Lion’