Daily Archives: January 13, 2015

Life of Pi by Yann Martel – So, What About That Ending?


One could argue that Yann Martel’s Life of Pi has a choose-your-own ending.

Did Pi really travel across the ocean, learning to peacefully coexist with a ravenous man-eating tiger along the way, a clever allegory that opposites don’t necessarily have to cancel one each other out and people can learn to live their lives without destroying each other?

Did Pi lie to the authorities who questioned him because it was easier than it would have been to insist that his incredible story was true?

Was Pi’s claim of sailing with Richard Parker the Tiger a lie?  Did he, in fact, suffer a terrible fate in which his mother was killed and he made up the story about the animals to avoid thinking about it?

Personally, I thought the Richard Parker version of the story was very uplifting, and then to add in the possibility that it never happened was a little disappointing.  But the dual ending possibilities could be a litmus test.  Positive people probably gravitate to the Richard Parker version.  Negative people say “a boy and a tiger never could have survived on a raft together, the boy would have been eaten in 2 seconds.  The version where Pi’s mother is killed must be the true version.”

All I can say is the novel is a good read, very original, and the movie really brings it to life.

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