Movie Review: Blinded By the Light (2019)

Synopsis: In 1987, teenager Javed Khan, the son of Pakistani immigrants living in Luton, England, is introduced to the music of Bruce Springsteen. Inspired by the lyrics, he begins taking steps to achieve his dream of being a writer. However, this eventually puts him at odds with his conservative father.

Who's in it? The movie stars Viveik Kalra, Kulvinder Ghir, Nell Williams, Aaron Phagura and Dean-Charles Chapman.


Review: I ended up getting this movie on DVD through Netflix after my wife (who is a big Bruce Springsteen fan) saw a preview for it on another movie. We finally had an opportunity to watch it yesterday afternoon and, after seeing it, I have to say I enjoyed it.

To be honest, I wasn't really sure if that would be the case because, based on what I saw in the previews, it looked a lot more like a movie she would enjoy than one I would like. But, there was actually quite a bit about this film that got me interested.

I think the part of this that really stood out for me was the amount of racism. Given the time period (before 9/11) and the fact it was in England (which I always thought was more progressive), seeing the hatred displayed toward Javed (Kalra), his family and other Pakistani immigrants was a real eye opener, especially toward the end of the movie, when the racism collides with a wedding.

And, it wasn't just racism toward his family either. His dad (Ghir) seemed to be equally as bad, especially when referring to Jewish people.

I was also surprise by just how inspiring this movie turned out to be. I loved how the film showed the lyrics he was listening to and put them in a perspective that made it easy to see why he thought they were speaking directly to him. To be fair, him constantly reciting the lyrics was getting a little old after a while, to the point I started wonder if maybe his girlfriend (Williams) was regretting being with him (I actually wondered if she was lying about liking Springsteen just to humor him and was actually a country music fan or something). But, even with that, I didn't lose interest.

The ending of this movie was also a bit of a surprise as well, with him finding a way to reconcile his Springsteen obsession with every other part of his life. It was actually a bit out of the blue considering, up until that point, it looked like he had pretty much decided to break away from everything else.

Final Opinion: This is a unique and inspiring movie that I wound up enjoying more than I expected. I'd recommend it.

My Grade: A

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