’Pi:’ Numerical Delusions

Stephen Pizzello

July 19, 2021

Cinematographer Matthew Libatique and director Darren Aronofsky on shooting their sci-fi fever dream.
An artful paean to mathematics and the Meaning of Life, Pi draws viewers into a paranoid and hallucinatory world that could make Kafka himself check the locks on his doors. Shot on 16mm black-and-white reversal film at a cost of just $60,000, this mind-blowing entry offered Sundance audiences a truly cinematic blend of expressionistic lighting, blinding white highlights and exhilarating subjective camerawork.

Cinematographer Matthew Libatique and director Darren Aronofsky on shooting their sci-fi fever dream.
An artful paean to mathematics and the Meaning of Life, Pi draws viewers into a paranoid and hallucinatory world that could make Kafka himself check the locks on his doors. Shot on 16mm black-and-white reversal film at a cost of just $60,000, this mind-blowing entry offered Sundance audiences a truly cinematic blend of expressionistic lighting, blinding white highlights and exhilarating subjective camerawork.