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Blinded By The Light (Movie)

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Jezus its screening in the pitiful country village i used to work in 

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(Spoiler content warning for those who have not seen it yet)

 

For those that don't know, It’s the story of a teenage Pakistani boy growing up in England. His parents immigrated there to “make a better life”.  Layoffs, urban decay, racism and unrealistic parental expectations make it hard on the main character. Compounding the matter is that awkward stage where he feels like an outcast from all sides and he find it impossible to live up to anyone’s standards because he is unsure of his own. He is caught between wanting to be noticed & appreciated and wanting to be invisible. He meets a friend, also a Pakistani, who profoundly gives him a couple of Bruce cassettes as if he was giving him the “Key to the Universe”. Shockingly, it WAS the key and spoke to him and was all he needed to hear. So basically a coming of age story as the character finds himself and his purpose while trying to hold on to all the good in his life be it family, traditions, friends and community. It’s not a very deep premise, but was told in an unusual and intense way.

 

First , the downside…..a little hokey, predictable and mellow dramatic. I am generally not a fan of “movie musicals”. It’s kind of why I didn’t love “Rocket Man”. I have a tough time immersing myself in intense dialogue and story line where the characters suddenly break into a song. I like my musicals on stage. That’s just me. Also, the scene near the end, when he’s spilling his guts out at the awards banquet, and his dad shows up? I mean who could see THAT coming.  Whew!

 

Having said that.....I loved everything else about this movie but especially the creative way they used the Bruce’s music as the main part of the story line. How could I not? It’s literally the soundtrack of my life, a roadmap of my adolescence into adulthood. It was a near perfect photograph of my life shown to me in the most relatable way possible. I was absolutely blown away. They used the music and weaved it’s meaning into the production perfectly. It was the exact same music that gave me inspiration and redemption in my most formative years. There were times when I welled up a bit as the storyline took me back to the times when I felt such despair and hopelessness.

 

“Everybody's got a hunger, a hunger they can't resist,

There's so much that you want, you deserve much more than this,

Well if dreams came true, oh, wouldn't that be nice,

But this ain't no dream we're living off through tonight,

Ah girl, you want it, you take it, you pay the price,”.

 

This is why Springsteen’s songs were so important to me. His songs told me that I was not alone, that Bruce knew everything I was going through. Bruce gets it… Bruce gets me…

 

Springsteen’s music came into my life in 1975 when I was almost 16 (Born to Run had just come out). My father and I had a good relationship overall, but age 15-20 was the low point for sure. My dad worked his ass off to give us a good home, nice things, education, security and stability. He wanted us to follow suit; get an education, get to work, find a wife, raise a family, find a place in the world, stay there & be thankful.  What he couldn’t understand is at the time, I wanted different things. I saw that there was a part of him that wanted something different too. I could see that the life he choose only headed in one direction and I wanted to go in all directions. I wasn’t going to “settle” for anything because I wanted everything. The life he chose didn’t have to be for both of us, I wanted different things. I moved out when I was 18, dove headfirst into drug and alcohol abuse, drove fast and reckless, abandoned relationships much too quickly, hitchhiked around the country and tried anything I could to put my hometown in the rearview mirror.

 

At 21, I found the love of my life and that changed everything. More life lessons in Bruce’s music and how if you have that one person riding shotgun and taking the wheel when your weary, then that’s the exactly where you belong. “Oh-oh come take my hand, We're riding out tonight to case the promised land”.

 

“The River” came out just as Sue and I began our journey together. While songs like “Independence Day” reflected on the turmoil of our parents houses, this record was loaded with songs telling us that even if all you have is that one person falling asleep and waking up by your side....you’re doing way better than most anybody. Enjoy it now because while it can be fleeting, it’s worth doing anything to save it.

 

So in the end….in the movie…. and in my life… father and son both actually wanted many of the same things & just chose a different vehicle to get there. My Dad drove a Chevy, I drove a convertible.

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmmHvnS0IKM&t=15s

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I've just got in after seeing the film in Hull with my wife (who's not a huge Springsteen fan). 

Obviously I really enjoyed it & so did my wife .

I was next to Sarfraz for 15 hours in the queue outside Wembley arena in 2002 for the Rising tour . He seemed a nice bloke to talk to 

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4 hours ago, Balloon Man said:

(Spoiler content warning for those who have not seen it yet)

 

For those that don't know, It’s the story of a teenage Pakistani boy growing up in England. His parents immigrated there to “make a better life”.  Layoffs, urban decay, racism and unrealistic parental expectations make it hard on the main character. Compounding the matter is that awkward stage where he feels like an outcast from all sides and he find it impossible to live up to anyone’s standards because he is unsure of his own. He is caught between wanting to be noticed & appreciated and wanting to be invisible. He meets a friend, also a Pakistani, who profoundly gives him a couple of Bruce cassettes as if he was giving him the “Key to the Universe”. Shockingly, it WAS the key and spoke to him and was all he needed to hear. So basically a coming of age story as the character finds himself and his purpose while trying to hold on to all the good in his life be it family, traditions, friends and community. It’s not a very deep premise, but was told in an unusual and intense way.

 

First , the downside…..a little hokey, predictable and mellow dramatic. I am generally not a fan of “movie musicals”. It’s kind of why I didn’t love “Rocket Man”. I have a tough time immersing myself in intense dialogue and story line where the characters suddenly break into a song. I like my musicals on stage. That’s just me. Also, the scene near the end, when he’s spilling his guts out at the awards banquet, and his dad shows up? I mean who could see THAT coming.  Whew!

 

Having said that.....I loved everything else about this movie but especially the creative way they used the Bruce’s music as the main part of the story line. How could I not? It’s literally the soundtrack of my life, a roadmap of my adolescence into adulthood. It was a near perfect photograph of my life shown to me in the most relatable way possible. I was absolutely blown away. They used the music and weaved it’s meaning into the production perfectly. It was the exact same music that gave me inspiration and redemption in my most formative years. There were times when I welled up a bit as the storyline took me back to the times when I felt such despair and hopelessness.

 

“Everybody's got a hunger, a hunger they can't resist,

There's so much that you want, you deserve much more than this,

Well if dreams came true, oh, wouldn't that be nice,

But this ain't no dream we're living off through tonight,

Ah girl, you want it, you take it, you pay the price,”.

 

This is why Springsteen’s songs were so important to me. His songs told me that I was not alone, that Bruce knew everything I was going through. Bruce gets it… Bruce gets me…

 

Springsteen’s music came into my life in 1975 when I was almost 16 (Born to Run had just come out). My father and I had a good relationship overall, but age 15-20 was the low point for sure. My dad worked his ass off to give us a good home, nice things, education, security and stability. He wanted us to follow suit; get an education, get to work, find a wife, raise a family, find a place in the world, stay there & be thankful.  What he couldn’t understand is at the time, I wanted different things. I saw that there was a part of him that wanted something different too. I could see that the life he choose only headed in one direction and I wanted to go in all directions. I wasn’t going to “settle” for anything because I wanted everything. The life he chose didn’t have to be for both of us, I wanted different things. I moved out when I was 18, dove headfirst into drug and alcohol abuse, drove fast and reckless, abandoned relationships much too quickly, hitchhiked around the country and tried anything I could to put my hometown in the rearview mirror.

 

At 21, I found the love of my life and that changed everything. More life lessons in Bruce’s music and how if you have that one person riding shotgun and taking the wheel when your weary, then that’s the exactly where you belong. “Oh-oh come take my hand, We're riding out tonight to case the promised land”.

 

“The River” came out just as Sue and I began our journey together. While songs like “Independence Day” reflected on the turmoil of our parents houses, this record was loaded with songs telling us that even if all you have is that one person falling asleep and waking up by your side....you’re doing way better than most anybody. Enjoy it now because while it can be fleeting, it’s worth doing anything to save it.

 

So in the end….in the movie…. and in my life… father and son both actually wanted many of the same things & just chose a different vehicle to get there. My Dad drove a Chevy, I drove a convertible.

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmmHvnS0IKM&t=15s

the video is unavailable in my country

but Ballon Man im a bit confussed

is the writting in your post your own ?

i mean is that your Bruce journey?

because if it is that's awsome 

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Is this THE balloon man? The legendary GL balloon man? 

I did not read your post as I’m not going to see BBTL until Friday.

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6 minutes ago, MadamMarie said:

Is this THE balloon man? The legendary GL balloon man? 

I did not read your post as I’m not going to see BBTL until Friday.

his post is pretty awsome

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i saw a trailer through the news 

quite a descent length

i would think advertising through the 6pm news would be quite expensive 

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finally Wanganui is ready for Bruce Springsteen music ! 

 

Screenshot_20190815-191111.png

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19 hours ago, Daisey Jeep said:

bloody hell Levin snd Hawara are both getting screenings 

they are small hellish little rural towns up the road and down the road from here - but too far away for me 

this is getting redicoulss 

When I visited NZ I stayed in Levin with my friend at her brothers house,very rural. 

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31 minutes ago, High As Hope said:

When I visited NZ I stayed in Levin with my friend at her brothers house,very rural. 

no offence to your friend's family but Levin was on our 'no way when hell freezes over  never ever'  list  when we were house shopping

it looks pretty in parts but its also a dump ! 

as its  within a drivable commute of Wellington its got quite expensive 

and who knew they even had s picture theatre !!

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2 hours ago, Daisey Jeep said:

finally Wanganui is ready for Bruce Springsteen music ! 

 

Screenshot_20190815-191111.png

Will thee be a special showing just for daisey

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23 minutes ago, AMIW said:

Will thee be a special showing just for daisey

well there is a theatre there that only seats 20 ! 

i did ask the Bruce hating other half if he'd like to go with me which provoked an outpouring of rude words but  followed by a very cordial but thank anyway :lol:

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1 hour ago, Daisey Jeep said:

a bit long winded 

and i sure as hell don't listen to Bruce Springsteen for nostelga 

from Queen to Speingsteen, why are there so many music films.bbc

It explains the PSB choice:

"The first thing that really unlocked it was the Pet Shop Boys' It's a Sin. If you listen to the lyrics it's basically about someone who is not able to do what they want and that's exactly what Javid is like! I thought, we've got to try and start the film with it because it would first get everyone into 1987 and also tell them what the theme of the film is."

Although the protagonist in It's A Sin has been able to do what he wants, but he's been conditioned to feel guilty about it. 
And it's not all about nostalgia:

"The key to explaining why we see a lot of younger listeners showing an interest in artists such as Queen, The Beatles and The Boss is their continued cultural relevance."

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https://www.theneweuropean.co.uk/top-stories/blinded-by-the-light-inspired-by-brexit-1-6206128

 

'Blinded by the Light is one of the best films of the summer. A big, bright British musical movie hit, it is ostensibly about a teenage British Pakistani boy in Luton in 1987 who, inspired by the music and lyrics of Bruce Springsteen, finds his own voice as a writer. But for the film's writer and director Gurinder Chadha, it's actually about Brexit'

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Saw it this morning with youngest ( 16, non Bruce fan). She loved it.

Corny as hell, but great use of the music. Loved that slow piano version of The Promised Land. Enjoyable couple of hours.

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31 minutes ago, Growin' Up said:

https://www.theneweuropean.co.uk/top-stories/blinded-by-the-light-inspired-by-brexit-1-6206128

 

'Blinded by the Light is one of the best films of the summer. A big, bright British musical movie hit, it is ostensibly about a teenage British Pakistani boy in Luton in 1987 who, inspired by the music and lyrics of Bruce Springsteen, finds his own voice as a writer. But for the film's writer and director Gurinder Chadha, it's actually about Brexit'

Manzoor, a Springsteen super-fan on whose book Greetings from Bury Park the film is based and who wrote the first draft of the film's script, reflects passionately on the journey his story took from page to screen, and on its ultimate power and purpose.

"What strikes me most is that audiences now know my family, my father, my mother, what my house was like growing up," he told me. "And the hope is that the next time they see someone who looks like me, who is Pakistani or Muslim, they will see beyond the skin and not see them as different but see a human being with struggles and dreams and realise how much they have in common with them. "That journey of empathy that was the most important thing for me, with my book and now with getting this film out there. How amazing for audiences to see beyond gender, beyond race, beyond nation, beyond time to connect with the story of a boy."

That's the film I went to see. The film about what I heard Sarfraz telling us about in Edinburgh a few years ago.

I almost walked out when the schoolteacher transferred her opinions on to her young students … but wanted to hear the music.

I'm glad I didn't read that a couple of weeks ago.

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Went last night with my "Roops" - he loved it (or as he put it afterwards "what's not to like") - and I have to say I've been enjoying it more with each viewing in a strange way as (now that I'm more familiar with the story / what's coming) I'm appreciating more the craft that went in to the telling of the story.

I was of course (as mentioned earlier in this thread) out to pay particular close attention to the lady (on the phone) in the Athena store (shaking her head as in "no jobs") that my wife reckoned to her was a cameo by the director and yes, she was (eagle eyed) spot on!...…..it was Gurinder - so both she and Sarfraz had small cameos in the movie.

Saw it 3 times in 8 days in 3 different venues and can confirm that for sound the winner was the Odeon. 

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I wish my English teachers at school had been like the one Javed had in the film.

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