Justin Chang of Variety reviews "Life of Pi," which opens the New York Film Festival tonight. Here's how it begins:

A literal crouching tiger is merely one of many visual wonders in Ang
Lee's "Life of Pi," a gently transporting work of all-ages entertainment
that melds a harrowing high-seas adventure with a dreamy meditation on
the very nature of storytelling. Summoning the most advanced
digital-filmmaking technology to deliver the most old-fashioned kind of
audience satisfaction, this exquisitely beautiful adaptation of Yann
Martel's castaway saga has a sui generis quality that's never less than
beguiling, even if its fable-like construction and impeccable artistry
come up a bit short in terms of truly gripping, elemental drama. …

Read the full piece here.

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