Ang Lee‘s Life of Pi (20th Century Fox, 11.21) will be the opening night attraction at the New York Film Festival. Now, I think, there’s a reason to seriously consider shelling out $1500 or so I can stay in Manhattan after Toronto and attend the New York Film Festival press screenings.

Not an easy decision, but I suppose it’s worth it. Sorta kinda. So I can be one of the first movie journalists to watch this kid Pi (played by Suraj Sharma) take a magical 3D sea journey with a Bengal Tiger, an orangutan and a zebra.

Except a little voice is whispering in my ear, “Don’t be a sucker…don’t do it…never trust movies about wide-eyed boys and animals and adventure.”

I don’t know what to do with this seething resentment I’m feeling about Manhattan hotel rates and apartment sublet deals. They used to be steep. Now they’re somewhere between ludicrous and brutal. I’ve come to seriously despise the way all New Yorkers — East Side, West Side, top to bottom, Hoboken to Astoria to Howard Beach — are determined to rape, pillage and gouge all visitors. With random exceptions they’re all pretty much on the same ethical level as Blackbeard or Long John Silver or Bob Diamond of Barclays. But if I want to see Life of Pi seven or eight weeks before it opens, I’ll have to agree to some kind of loathsome economic submission. Terrific.