Lion: "His Name Was Sheru, Meaning Lion"

Director: Garth Davis
Writer:     Luke Davies
Starring: Dev Patel
                Nicole Kidman
                Rooney Mara
                David Wenham
                Sunny Pawar
                Abhishek Bharate
                Divian Ladwa
                Priyanka Bose
Rating:    *****

Release Date: Out Now 

As award season rolls around, there is suddenly a treasure trove of phenomenal films that are released, that are sad, funny, moving and uplifting. Lion is a beautiful mix of moving and uplifting, and is handled in a positive and artistic manner. Rather than wallowing in the sadness that is indeed involved, director Garth Davis has tried to focus on the gorgeously happy story that flows through. 

Sunny Pawar
Saroo (Pawar), a young boy in India, one day finds himself lost on a train that take shim thousands f miles away from his family and home. Escaping the many dangers that he faces on the streets of Kolkata, he ends up in an orphanage where he is quickly adopted by a loving australian couple. Sue and John Brierley (Kidman & Wenham) are a happy married couple who have lots of love to give, and they want to give the to Saroo. 20 years later and Saroo (Patel) soon finds himself longing for answers and wanting to find the place that he once called home. Lion is a story of self-discovery and returning to a place that Saroo once knew.

Young Sunny Pawar, who portrays Saroo in the first third of the film, is a wonderfully talented little boy that is full of light and life. His personality is infectious and the way he handles the beginnings of this challenging story really needs to be commended. Escaping danger, losing your family and moving to a whole new world with strangers are massive events for a boy to deal with, and Pawar performs this with an innocence and naivety.

When Saroo grows up he is portrayed by the extremely talented Dev Patel. Patel is no stranger to an uplifting drama, with Slumdog Millionaire being the film that catapulted him into the worlds eye. Lion proves to be an absolute dream film for Patel to star in, as he gives one of the finest and most nuanced performances in cinema this past year. Subtle, heartfelt and pure, Patel gives Saroo the strength and vulnerability he needs to go on this epic search, whilst fighting his inner conscience.

David Wenham, Dev Patel
& Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman and David Wenham portray Saroo's adoptive parents, and both give tremendously to the film and their fellow actors. However, it is Kidman who truly gets to shine, knocking out some powerful scenes with Dev Patel about their other child and the reasons behind why they adopted. Kidman loses herself in the script, and fully embodies the character of Sue, the first time she bathes Saroo is an especially lovely one. Watching Dev and Nicole in their scenes together is emotional and brilliant. 

Director Garth Davis, has used the true story of Saroo Brierley, and created a gorgeous cinematic masterpiece. The blend of worlds, India and Australia, and the script by Luke Davies help to set the tone for what the film is. Vast shots, and true close ups help to fit the puzzle pieces together and move the story along with grace. The final scenes, as Saroo is finally reunited with his mother, are beautifully shot and Davis lingers on their embrace for the perfect amount of time. Lion is a film that will have you feeling warm on the inside, and beaming on the outside. It truly is a perfectly emotional film, for all the right reasons.

Lion - Trailer