After moving film critics and bringing whole theaters to tears at the premieres in London, Mill Valley, and Rome, Lion will come to the Czech Republic on February 23, 2017.
The suffocating panic we all once felt as children as we lost sight of our parents by accident allows us to empathize with little Saroo, lost on a train that will take him across India, and forever away from anything familiar. This sweet little boy, who only yesterday was playing around the train station and following around his big brother Godoo, is now forced to grow up in the span of a night, and learn to survive in the urban jungle of Kolkata, amongst its poor and lost children. Accompanying Saroo’s desperate cries for familiar faces in an unfamiliar world is a pulse-pounding soundtrack incorporating anguished notes of piano and violin. Director Garth Davis’ creation is extremely powerful in its soundtrack. The music brings us right into the suddenly tumultuous experiences Saroo finds himself in where the most familiar and reassuring sounds instead now accompany danger and desperation. As an audience, we experience an extreme where the screeching sound of railroads are the only familiar thing and where the choir of children at the orphanage sings a lullaby with the aim of covering up the cries of one of their roommates, who is dragged away to an unknown destiny in the heart of the night. Finally the warmth of family comes to
Finally the warmth of family comes to Saroo in a language, he isn’t able to understand when he is finally adopted by an Australian couple (Nicole Kidman and David Venham).
25 years later, Saroo’s childhood curiosity still is a trait he retains as a determined adult, and he sets upon the road to find his original family and the his first home in India, aided by the technology of Google Earth, to search for a nameless village.
In a Bildungsoman parabola Saroo feels the need to go back in order to define himself as a person and be able to go on with his life as an adult.
While the trip represents one act of courage, it will require true bravery to embrace the solemn joy of meeting his biological mother again, despite the fact she speaks a language he has long since forgotten.
In nearly 30 years of time, Saroo has lost many memories, his native language, and a brother, but at the end of the film, we are left with an overwhelming sensation of familial love, overcoming linguistic, cultural and even temporal barriers. As an audience we are led to feel deep emotion for a mother who never desisted in waiting for her lost child to come home, another mother that was brave enough to let her adopted son choose to look for his mother on a faraway trip, and a brave young man who faced his insecurities and questioned his certainties in order to walk in confidence and love toward adulthood.
FACT: The movie is based on the non-fictional book: A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley.
QUOTES: “One day you’ll tell me everything.” (Adoptive mother Mrs. Brierley to Saroo who does not yet speak English).
“There are no more dead ends.” (Saroo after finding his biological mother in India).
Cover photo: film Lion, MarkRogers