The imperfect, but moving film, "BRICK LANE," is now available on dvd from SONY. The plot revolves around a young Indian girl, Nazneen, living on "Brick Lane" in London. Having moved to this street, comprised of mostly fellow Indians, after marrying into an arranged marriage. Her isolation, due to lack of fluency in English and a repressive environment of traditional, culturally imposed segregation from the social world, is poignant and makes her attraction to a younger, radical Muslim, more believable, What could've easily transgressed into soap-opera, manages to stay a level above, due to the tight direction of Sarah Gavron. The film's only real flaw relates to the "9/11" theme that pops up, feeling a bit contrived, in relation to the rest of the the film's script, which feels authentic and original. While some may find the ending is a bit contrived, most should find it acceptable and cautiously refreshing, after the journey the audience has embarked on with the main character.
SONY has provided the correct 2.35:1 aspect ratio, with 16:9 enhancement. Although colors aren't typically rich, the level of detail and deep blacks and grays, provide a visual tapestry that veers between gritty and colorful, depending on the given scene. Grain, while sporadic, is never intrusive. Detail is generally impressive.
SONY has provided a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix. Although never aggressive, ambient and discrete effects provide the necessary atmosphere to enhance the intensity to some important moments. The score is well complimented through all speakers. Dialogue is always intelligible and free from distortion.
Two commentaries are provided, but only the one with the director and main actress, is really worth listening to. They provide enough engaging retrospective analysis of the film's production and various themes to make it worth a listen to any fan of the film. The other commentary just feels sluggish throughout, without adding anything of importance to the other commentary.
Deleted scenes are included, but they don't add to the film's narrative, and were rightfully cut.
Other extras included a "behind-the-scenes" featurette and lengthy interviews with the director and cast.