Blu-ray Review: BASMATI BLUES

BASMATI BLUES was directed by Dan Baron and stars Brie Larson, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Saahil Sehgal, Donald Sutherland, Tyne Daly and Scott Bakula. Pulsing with the vibrant colors and rhythms of India, this captivating film features original songs written by global artists Pearl Jam, Kristian Bush of Sugarland, Sid Khosla of Goldspot, Dave Baerwald and Sonu Nigam. Boasting a fantastic ensemble cast, Basmati Blues is a love letter to multiple eras of thrilling Bollywood cinema, heart-stirring musicals, and indelible classic Hollywood romantic comedies!

This enchanting musical romantic comedy stars Brie Larson as Dr. Linda Watt, a sheltered young scientist whose company CEO (Donald Sutherland) orders her to India to sell farmers the GMO rice that she created. There Linda meets Rajit (Utkarsh Ambudkar), a rebellious college student forced to drop out for lack of funds. Through his playful and often infuriating antagonism, Linda learns she has unwittingly aided a destructive plan against the farmers she was supposedly sent to help. A passionate battle erupts and the future rests on whether Linda and Rajit can quit arguing long enough to admit they love each other and save the day.

Basmati Blues follows Linda, this young scientist who has invented a modified strain of rice (Rice 9) and she ends up getting sent to India to personally introduce her creation to the local farmers but she doesn’t realize there’s a sinister agenda at play by her boss at Mogil. Once she arrives and begins to meet some of the locals, she begins to learn some of their rich customs and traditions where she catches the attention of Rajit who doesn’t want a big corporation coming in to dictate how the local farmers do their jobs.

There’s also William (Saahil Sehgal), the rich young businessman who is working closely with the big corporation and the two men end up competing for the young scientist’s heart while she slowly discovers what’s actually going on here. It’s a fun back and forth between the trio as the agenda is eventually exposed for what it really is. A small spark between the trio ignites a rebellion and in the end the local farmers find a way out of this unfair predicament and the big corporation is forced out. Linda also finds love with Rajit and the two end up getting married. Crazy how things work, huh?

The packaging comes with a slipcover/o-card. The front features the artwork you see at the top of the page and the back includes movie details, some images and list of special features. The reverse sleeve features an image from the movie. The Blu-ray disc also features some artwork that matches the front cover. Inserting the disc, the menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for the high-definition disc were crisp and clear. I didn’t have any issues with the video and audio for this release.

Bottom line is, I’m not that big into musicals or rom-coms but I have to admit that Basmati Blues ended up being kind of a charming watch full of international flavor. We’ve seen similar stories like this in dozens of other movies over the years where a naive and energetic young person who works for a big corporation wants to help people who run smaller businesses but once they get to know them they realize there’s an ulterior motive behind it all so they end up jumping ship to help the people. This is pretty much the story for Basmati Blues but this movie inserts several catchy musical numbers that are all sung by the cast. This musical Bollywood-style rom-com isn’t going to be for everyone but I think it’d make a good date movie because it’s fun and the cast does a great job with their likeable and not-so likable characters. Brie Larson is wonderful as this cute young scientist and Donald Sutherland once again delivers as a sinister antagonist. Utkarsh Ambudkar also does a really good job as the young man who opens up the visiting doctor’s eyes and heart so she can see what’s really going on in his homeland. Basmati Blues will be available on Blu-ray on April 3rd.

Distributor: Shout! Factory

Run Time: 106 Minutes

Rated: Not Rated

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen (2.35:1)

Blu-ray Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

Subtitles: English

Special Features: The extras include some audio commentary, a featurette that takes the viewer behind-the-scenes of the movie, thirteen deleted scenes, a photo gallery and theatrical trailer.

  • Audio Commentary With Writer/Director Dan Baron, Actor Utkarsh Ambudkar, Writer Jeff Dorchen, Producers Monique Caulfield And Jeffrey Soros
  • Behind-The-Scenes Featurette (14:12)
  • Deleted Scenes (12:03)
  • Photo Gallery (09:24)
  • Theatrical Trailer (02:39)


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