This is the most recent film i watched, and I ABSOLUTELY FUCKING LOVED......... the first half.
Like, okay, sure, the whole thing was pretty great. It's a good story that's been executed really, really well. But the part where the main character is an adult is just kind of slow, and half the characters (namely the adopted brother and the girlfriend) seem completely pointless — but, of course, they had to be in there because it's based on a true story. The girlfriend in particular was just kind of... there. They met and were suddenly together, they had a couple of conversations, they broke up, and then they were suddenly back together again. End of story. There was no real character development. She was just meh. Same with the brother, who, apart from being The Problem Child™, had no real impact. At a stretch, I could say he highlighted the contrast between Saroo's two brothers and his relationship with each of them as well as being a representation of the long-term effects of the fucked-up life of street kids in India, but really the only reason he was there is because the real-life version of him exists. This half of the movie had its moments, of course, and it wasn't bad by any means — even if the whole movie was like that, it would still be pretty good — but just compared to the first half, which was spectacular, it wasn't that great. To be honest, most of the time I was more interested in how incredibly good-looking Dev Patel was. I was honestly drooling all over my computer screen like a muppet. Oh, and the Australian accent, which wasn't too bad. Every time I've seen him in a movie, he's had a different accent. I'm not entirely sure what his actual voice sounds like. I think British???? He was in Skins, wasn't he? But anyway. Back to the movie.
Okay, with the less-good half aside, oh my gooood, the first half was incredible. The cinematography was beautiful. The pacing was pretty much spot-on. The score was great. The child actor who played young Saroo was fucking amazing. And he was only 8 years old when it was filmed!! wtf??? Child actors are notoriously good at being fucking terrible and ruining their characters or the scenes they're in, but this kid was just awesome, honestly. I also loved the whole Slumdog Millionaire / A Series of Unfortunate Events vibe — where it's a collection of shitty events that happen to him along the road throughout his journey. I'm not going to spoil anything, but the parts where adults were being dicks were especially heartbreaking. It presented some really dark themes with just enough low-key creep to make you feel super unsettled but not enough to blatantly throw it in your face for shock value. I really appreciate that. As much as I love a good healthy dose of unnecessary shock, it just would have been tasteless in this film.
The ending was half happy and heartwarming and half sad and heartbreaking. I did cry lol. I don't really know what to say without spoiling it, though. It was just a nice, tidy resolution. It wasn't too drawn-out, and it wasn't too rushed. It wasn't too tragic, and it wasn't too cheesy. It was just... nice. idk.
I feel like I've mostly bitched about the bad parts in this post, but I do really like and recommend this film. It's a beautiful story and very well made.