26
Aug
2019
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Blinded by The Light

Blinded By The Light

Javed (Viveik Kalra) and best friend Matt (Dean Charles Atwell) have the future in their eyes. Imagining a life beyond Luton and its dreary prejudices, it is Javed who feels it most. Caught between his writing and a controlling father (Kulvinder Ghir), Javed is stuck on the fast-track to a respectable job and an acceptable wife. However, there’s a voice kicking him inside that is only ever released in the diaries he commits to. However, when new friend Roops (Aaron Phagura) lends him two tapes of Bruce Springsteen, Javed’s feelings of frustration and alienation start to make sense.

... engagingly sweeps you into Javed’s heartfelt dreams.

As the force behind the seismic ‘Bend It Like Beckham’, director Gurinder Chada returns with another pertinent comedy drama in ‘Blinded By The Light’. Swapping football aspirations for writing, Chada’s latest is a return to ‘Bend It Like Beckham’s central arc, albeit framed inside a love letter to the 80’s. With much in common to Dexter’s Fletcher’s ‘Sunshine on Leith’, ‘Blinded By The Light’ is a musical but played-lite. Only ever occasionally veering into full street swinging, carousal dance numbers, the emphasis here is definitely more on the drama than the dancing. 

Realistically soured by racist intolerances and casual indifference, Gurinder Chada keeps the saccharine in check with an applaudable bitter sweetness. Playing off broken friendships, strained relationships and Javed’s learning which sacrifices are the right ones to make, ‘Blinded By The Light’, engagingly sweeps you into his heartfelt dreams.

You may not have been born in the USA, or ever danced in the dark to ‘The Boss’ but it’s hard to resist the charms of this real-life tale of dogged determination. Never resting upon its source material, ‘Blinded By The Light’ is an unassuming tale of adoration that never loses sight of its own characters. Be lifted.

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Christopher Robin
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