Carlos López Estrada’s Blindspotting, one of 2018’s film festival hits, arrives on DVD and Blu-ray on February 4 after a Digital release in January.
Carlos López Estrada’s Blindspotting, which follows a parolee with three days left on his sentence, only to have him witness a police shooting that threatens to ruin a lifelong friendship, was a big festival hit in 2018, winning plaudits from critics as well earning a nomination for Best Male Lead at the 34th Independent Spirit Awards for Daveed Diggs.
A “compelling” take on friendship and tension on the streets, this refreshing film has “much to say about subjects like gentrification and race – things it approaches with a mix of wit and seriousness” says James Berardinelli in his ReelViews review.
Parolee Collin (Daveed Diggs) needs to stay clear of trouble. Miles (Rafael Casal), Collin’s hot-tempered best friend, can’t stay out of it. Working as movers, when Collin witnesses a police shooting, the pair’s friendship is tested as they grapple with identity and the changing realities of the rapidly-gentrifying neighborhood they thought they knew so well.
Blindspotting stars childhood friends in real life who write and act in a film inspired by their own experiences. The screenplay was completed in the mid-2000s with an ambition to present Oakland in a way that was more authentic, at least to them, when compared to typical views of the city in film. After years of delays, the pair’s schedules finally allowed them to make it, with principal photography beginning in June 2017.
Also starring Janina Gavankar, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Ethan Embry, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Utkarsh Ambudkar and Wayne Knight, the film draws attention to gentrification, police violence and racism in the contemporary San Francisco Bay Area. It also includes aspects of “start-up culture, corporate branding, social media, [and] the justice system” says Barry Hertz in his Globe and Mail review. He adds that “Blindspotting is eager to take them all on with style and wit, and it succeeds more often than not.”
Diggs and Casal have said that most of what audiences see was in their first draft with a number of rewrites completed as filming took place to reflect topical themes. Because Diggs was constantly busy performing in Hamilton, the pair had to delay production, which is one of Empire magazine’s “stand out” movies of the year, for an extended period of time.
Blindspotting is released in the UK on Digital on January 28 and on DVD/Blu-ray on February 4.