Movie Review: “Lion”


Courtesy of Media Super

“Lion” is a movie whose themes of loss, love, and family are universal even though its settings may not be. Based on a real story, and spanning two decades, the film tells the story of Saroo (Sunny Pawar), a young Indian boy who gets separated from his brother at a train station and is eventually adopted by an Australian couple, Sue and John Brierley (Nicole Kidman and David Wenham).

As an adult Saroo Brierley (Dev Patel) finds himself struggling with the desire to use the memories of his past to find his way back to his family in India while wanting to stay “loyal” to his adoptive parents.

The movie takes the audience on a heavily emotional journey, with beautiful and poignant cinematography providing its actors the perfect canvas. Whether it’s the cutting portrayal of the conditions abandoned children in India live in, on the streets or in orphanages, or the sweeping landscapes of Saroo’s homes in both India and Australia.

The story is based on the real Saroo Brierley’s memoirs “A Long Way Home” written about his journey in using Google Maps to trace his way back to his original home. Although an important part of Saroo’s journey is in his use of Google Maps, the movie doesn’t focus on it as much. A balance is found between showing Brierley using his laptop and mapping his way back and showing the effect is has on his personal relationships, particularly his relationship with his adoptive mother.

“Lion” is a movie that will leave its audience in tears as they join a young boy through two decades of his life, experiencing his loss, fear, and joy with him.