Lion is based on the book – A Long Way Home written by Saroo Brierley. Saroo became lost when he was five years old in his birth country India. Unable to get back to his family he finds himself in an orphanage in Calcutta. After being adopted by a loving couple from Hobart, Australia. Saroo excels in his new world, moving to Melbourne as a young adult. Tortured by thoughts of his family searching for him, he obsesses over the need to go and find his Mother to tell her he is fine.
The premise of the story is quite basic, but it is the way that it is told that makes this film so good. Garth Davis does a great job directing and visually it is stunning. The immense camera framing gets the very most from the landscapes and magnifies the horrors experienced by the small boy. The screenplay won a BAFTA for Luke Davies and it is fair to say that the collaboration with the Director resulted in a fantastic cinematic experience.
Davis seems to get the very best out of the cast too. Nicole Kidman pulls off an extraordinary performance as the adoptive Mother, with some crushing scenes involved. David Wenham gives another strong performance. But all credit goes to Dev Patel (adult Saroo) and Rooney Mara (Lucy, Saroos's Girlfriend), both of whom are electric on screen. However, the visual shots of Sunny Pawar (the young Saroo) standing alone will haunt you for a long time.
Lion went on to receive over a hundred award nominations, including six Oscars. Making it one of the most successful Australian movies ever to be made.
Personally, I have watched this film three times and it manages to stir the same responses each time. If you are looking for a real quality film to watch on Netflix. You really should look no further than Lion – just have the tissues at hand.