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Lion (2016)

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A five-year-old Indian boy gets lost on the streets of Calcutta, thousands of kilometers from home. He survives many challenges before being adopted by a couple in Australia. 25 years later, he sets out to find his lost family.

Director:

Garth Davis

Writers:

Saroo Brierley (adapted from the book "A Long Way Home" by), Luke Davies (screenplay by)
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Popularity
1,104 ( 22)
Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 58 wins & 96 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sunny Pawar ... Young Saroo
Abhishek Bharate ... Guddu
Priyanka Bose ... Kamla
Khushi Solanki Khushi Solanki ... Young Shekila
Shankar Nisode Shankar Nisode ... Shankar
Tannishtha Chatterjee ... Noor
Nawazuddin Siddiqui ... Rama
Riddhi Sen ... Café Man
Koushik Sen ... Police Official
Rita Boy ... Amita
Udayshankar Pal Udayshankar Pal ... Liluah Teacher (as Uday Shankar Paul)
Surojit Das Surojit Das ... Shonedeep / Haunted Boy
Deepti Naval ... Mrs. Sood
Menik Gooneratne ... Swarmina
David Wenham ... John Brierley
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Storyline

In 1986, Saroo was a five-year-old child in India of a poor but happy rural family. On a trip with his brother, Saroo soon finds himself alone and trapped in a moving decommissioned passenger train that takes him to Calcutta, 1500 miles away from home. Now totally lost in an alien urban environment and too young to identify either himself or his home to the authorities, Saroo struggles to survive as a street child until he is sent to an orphanage. Soon, Saroo is selected to be adopted by the Brierley family in Tasmania, where he grows up in a loving, prosperous home. However, for all his material good fortune, Saroo finds himself plagued by his memories of his lost family in his adulthood and tries to search for them even as his guilt drives him to hide this quest from his adoptive parents and his girlfriend. Only when he has an epiphany does he realize not only the answers he needs, but also the steadfast love that he has always had with all his loved ones in both worlds. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Australian true story of a life lost and found See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic material and some sensuality. | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Site | Official Site [Japan] | See more »

Country:

UK | Australia | USA

Language:

English | Hindi | Bengali

Release Date:

6 January 2017 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Long Way Home See more »

Filming Locations:

Hobart, Tasmania, Australia See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$123,360, 25 November 2016, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$51,694,854, 28 April 2017

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$123,723,779, 20 March 2017
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Atmos

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The real-life Brierley family was invited on set and visited the production that took place in Tasmania. See more »

Goofs

Most trains shown in this movie are liveried in blue. However, around 1986, Indian passenger trains were predominantly painted maroon. The switch to blue only started in the late 90s. See more »

Quotes

[discussing how to find Saroo's family]
Dinner Guests: What paper trail?
Saroo Brierley: My mum could not read or write.
Dinner Guests: What did she do?
Saroo Brierley: A labourer... she carried rocks.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the final credits, there's an earlier shot with the boys on the train tunnel and the credits "In loving memory of Guddu". See more »

Connections

Featured in Honest Trailers: The Oscars (2017) (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Parade
Written & Performed by Will and James Ragar
Published by Shakra
(P) Yoga Records
Licensed courtesy of Midnight Choir
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not just another Oscar bait movie
19 October 2016 | by moviewizguySee all my reviews

Do you know the feeling you get when you go into a film with no expectations at all or thinking it might be decent, and the film turns out to not only be good, but blows you away by how amazing it ends up being? That's LION, and if you've been watching films for several years like me thinking you've seen everything committed to cinema, it's a fantastic feeling to be proved wrong.

Let me explain to you exactly what I experienced while watching LION: Almost half of the film is in Hindi, which lends incredible authenticity to the story, not that BS where they have actors in which English is their second language speak English for the sake of sparing the American audience from reading subtitles (I'm looking at you, MEMOIRS OF A GEISHA, and every other Hollywood movie ever made). In fact, the entire first act takes place in India, where about 40 minutes of the film rides on the shoulders of a first time child actor – played by the wonderful Sunny Pawar – and it's one of the best first acts I've seen in years. Think of it like the silent first act of Wall-E; it feels like it can be its own film, yet the filmmakers do a great job connecting the story once Dev Patel comes on screen.

On top of that, the filmmaking is impressive. The script is fantastic, the cinematography is lush, the soundtrack complements the film really nicely, and the pacing is on point where it rarely feels like it's dragging, despite the story taking place over the course of 25 years. Every actor in here is also terrific in their roles. As stated earlier, Sunny Pawar makes a compelling lead for the first third of the film. If Oscars were given to kid actors, he would have a damn good chance at winning one. For the last two thirds, Dev Patel more than carries the rest of the film, giving an emotionally naked performance worthy enough to top his role in SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE. Finally, Rooney Mara, Nicole Kidman, and David Wenham are ace, despite all of them having limited screen time.

In a time where diversity is being talked about more in the film industry, LION makes a compelling case for having diversity in storytelling. It's not about a guy meeting his girlfriend's parents for the first time. It's not about a group of friends going in a cabin in the woods. It's not even about a guy/girl struggling with the death of his/her father/mother/son/daughter/dog. No, LION is a personal story unique to South Asians growing up in India, and it's refreshing and easily one of the best films the year has to offer. Don't dismiss this as yet another Oscar bait movie put out by the Weinstein Company – it probably is one. But the film is much more than that. With a distinct vision from director Garth Davis, LION offers an enthralling story that deserves to be seen by everyone.


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