By Laxmi Parmeswar, MA MS LPC
Lion, an unexpected title, is a poignant true story about one lost child in India and his long life journey into adulthood. Without giving too much away, it's about anchoring childhood memories, and coming to terms with one's roots.
This story of survival and destiny teaches us that human connections are far too complex for environmental science where reduce, reuse and recycle are the norm; and laws of mathematics fall short as far as love & compassion are concerned, because ONLY addition and multiplication work, subtraction and division are actually toxic!
Lots of messages are implicit in this movie; emotional health and grounding have little to do with financial stability, there is a uniqueness to western kindness and generosity, one can choose not to believe that blood is thicker than water, and that there may be a burden of privilege when wealth follows financial hardship in childhood.
Incredible performance by the new child actor, Sunny Pawar and memorable acting of Dev Patel, Rooney Mara, and Nicole Kidman elevate this feature debut from Garth Davis to a "must-see" movie in the US- am not sure if it has been released in India.
I saw this film with my two adult sons and found it particularly heartwarming- it appeared that they enjoyed this bittersweet tale of bonding between two brothers as well. We were all struck by the amazing reach and impact of technology, and how small our world is today. I think this movie will particularly resonate with millennials who seem to be a generation struggling with "global" identities and multiple cultural realities...
Don't forget to take a box of Kleenex and wait for the information about the real family in the end!