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Basmati Blues is a English-language
in the vein of Bollywood films. The film is from executive producers
Gerber (Girl in Flight) and Randy Paul. It stars the Academy
winning actress Brie Larson in the lead role.
Linda (Brie Larson) is a
scientist with a passion for invention who creates a special rice which
modified to be a superior type of rice. Eric (Scott Bakula) also works
in the lab and he just so happens to be her dad. Eric is proud of her
advancement in the rice code. The two have a special connection over
shared interest in scientific discovery and creation.
The company's dastardly corporate
CEO Gurgon (Donald Sutherland), on the other hand, only sees the rice
of its potential to make him boatloads of money. With big dollar signs
in his eyes, Gurgon sends the earnest Linda overseas to India to sell
farmers on upgrading their bags of rice to the new genetically modified
corporate contracts which will leave the farmers poor and desolate.
doesn't realize this and is there to sell them on the benefits of her
While staying in India to sell
the modified rice, Linda meets the spirited and kindred soul Rajit
Ambudkar). A romance slowly begins to brew between the pair while Linda
to become invested in the country and the culture of India. While
beautiful land of India, Linda learns more about herself and her dreams
falling in love.
Will Gurgon succeed in getting
the farmers to sign up for unfair contracts or will Linda find true
recognizing the nefarious plans of her CEO boss? Will Linda ultimately
day and deflate Gurgon's diabolical scheme?
If this storyline sounds kind of
it's because it really is a farfetched storyline. This is just a
film at its core which doesn't actually take itself too seriously. It's
even remotely trying to be a serious drama. This is a light, fluffy,
comedic musical in the same style of Bollywood films. It consistently
lot of singing, dancing, and goofy comedic hijinks. If that sounds like
something that would be a bad cinematic experience, you won't enjoy it.
For those who enjoy laughing,
smiling, and watching fun song and dance numbers, no matter how
the storyline might become, Basmati Blues is actually a
great delight. Sure, it's basically just a live-action cartoon on some
But is it a fun cartoon? Absolutely.
Brie Larson is radiant in the
lead role and brings the film a great energy that certainly can't be
ignored. She's a terrific actress and her song and dance routines
lot to the film's entertaining craft. I couldn't help but smile while
her charisma leap off of the screen.
Simply put, the music is also a lot of fun. The
by Steven Argila (The Thing About My Folks) zips along with
jazz. The original songs in the film include tracks as written by the
Pearl Jam and featuring performances by the cast. They do great
and the music feels airy and fun. This won't rank as a brilliant
certainly the songs are entertaining and effective.
The cinematography by Himman Dhamija (Roy, I,
aur Main) is consistently beautiful with a rich color scheme. This
photography is also aided by the vibrant, colorful costumes designed by
Wagner (The Green Mile, The Notebook) with additional
by Urmilla Lal Motwani (Ultraviolet, The Fall) and
by Kama K. Royz (Experimenter, Marjorie Prime). The cast
get to wear
some fantastic costumes in this film (most especially Brie Larson).
The screenplay was written by Dan Baron (See
and Jeff Dorchen from a story by Dan Baron, Jeff Dorchen, and Danny
I can't help but somewhat critique the story because of how outlandish
it is at
times, I still enjoyed it. This is a fun script with a lot of great
an energy which carries on throughout the film. It's not exactly high
I'm pretty sure that was never even the intent. The aim is to
does that in spades.
Dan Baron makes his directorial debut with the
film. This is
one area in which Basmati Blues shines. The film has a
vibe to it and for this kind of musical production, that's actually not
thing. It gives the film an energy and vibrancy that I enjoyed. This is
entertainment through-and-through and while the film might not win any
it's a joyous experience that left me smiling.
Basmati Blues is presented on Blu-ray with
an impressive 1080p
MPEG-4 AVC encoded high definition presentation in the original
aspect ratio of 2.35:1 widescreen. This is a colorful presentation with
array of colors with crisp cinematography. The color on the
presentation is a
big aspect as to why this is a pleasant image. While it's not a total
HD presentation, it's a strong one which will satisfy most viewers.
The audio is presented on Blu-ray with a quality
Master Audio 5.1 and DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 stereo presentation. The
is fun with good surround usage for all musical numbers. Though the
much in the way of bass, the film does sound crisp, which is important
dialogue reproduction and for the music. It's a pleasant mix which
Audio Commentary with writer/director Dan
actor Utkarsh ambudkar, co-writer Jeff Dorchen, and producers Monique
& Jeffrey Soros
Behind the Scenes Featurette (HD, 14 min.)
cast and crew, including the director and stars discussing the
Deleted Scenes (HD, 12 min.) features the
deleted sequences: Execs Singing and Goodbye, Newt Clone, William's
Calls Linda, Chai Wallah, Linda Sings, Mannequin, Spice Boat, Local
Yokel, Evilyn and Gurgon Goodbye
Photo Gallery (HD, 9 min.) features a
behind the scenes production photographs
Theatrical Trailer (HD, 3 min.)
Basmati Blues is a entertaining musical in
style of Bollywood films. While the storyline is silly the film is a
lot of fun
and is greatly improved by the performances, especially from lead Brie
Dan Baron has made a commendable directorial debut. I look forward to
other films from Baron in the future.
Neil Lumbard is a lifelong fan of cinema. He aspires to make movies and has written two screenplays on spec. He loves writing, and currently does in Texas.