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Anthony Maras
Dev Patel, Armie Hammer, Nazanin Boniadi
Writing Credits:
John Collee, Anthony Maras

The true story of the Taj Hotel terrorist attack in Mumbai.

Box Office:
$20 million.
Opening Weekend
$3,196,209 on 924 Screens.
Domestic Gross

Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
English DVS
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 123 min.
Price: $34.98
Release Date: 6/18/2019

• “Story and Cast” Featurette
• “Finding the True Story” Featurette
• “Humanity Within Tragedy” Featurette
• “Real-Life Heroes” Featurette
• Previews
• DVD Copy


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Hotel Mumbai [Blu-Ray] (2019)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (June 19, 2019)

Based on true events, 2019’s Hotel Mumbai takes us to India circa 2008. A small group of terrorists arrives in Mumbai and launches a variety of violent, deadly attacks.

These endeavors eventually take them to the enormous Taj Mahal Palace Hotel. As the terrorists execute their assault, staff and guests attempt to remain alive.

Of course, Mumbai focuses on specific characters along the way. On the staff side, we mainly concentrate on Arjun (Dev Patel), a waiter in the hotel’s restaurant.

In terms of guests, the film spends a lot of time with Iranian-British heiress Zahra (Nazanin Boniadi) and her American husband David (Armie Hammer). They visit the Taj Mahal Palace along with their baby Cameron and nanny Sally (Tilda Cobham-Hervey).

Our knowledge that Mumbai derives from real events becomes its biggest selling point, as that side adds impact to the proceedings. While we assume that the film takes liberties with some of the facts, our realization that such a brutal terrorist event occurred lends gravity to the tale.

This seems important because otherwise Mumbai feels a little too like something out of the disaster film genre. The movie spreads itself too thin in terms of characters and narrative, factors that damage its impact at times.

As noted, the threads with Arjun and Zahra/David dominate, but not to the exclusion of all else. We dally with quite a few different characters along the way.

Unfortunately, this means we don’t get to know any of them especially well. Arjun receives the best exposition, and unsurprisingly, he becomes the role with which the audience most bonds.

As for the others, they remain too thin to prompt more than token investment from the viewer. We care about them to a decent degree and feel pain when some encounter tragedy, but the lack of much exposition robs these scenes of some impact.

Mumbai also fails to present the scale of the event well. Though we hear how large the Taj Mahal Palace is, we rarely feel that scope.

This means that the place seems nearly deserted despite the supposed presence of many guests and staff. It’s a weird anomaly, as we don’t get the full impact of the tragedy since we see so few of the people involved.

Despite some missteps, Mumbai still packs a reasonable punch. The basic material comes with too much dramatic merit for the film to fall totally flat.

Still, I think it ends up as a bit of a missed opportunity. While the movie’s depiction of heroism among tragedy occasionally hits home, the full package doesn’t quite come together.

Footnote: in the movie, Arjun’s Sikh headwear becomes a major plot point, as the character attaches great value to it. On the Blu-ray’s cover, however, we see Patel bareheaded. Who thought this made sense?

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B+/ Bonus D

Hotel Mumbai appears in an aspect ratio of 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This wasn’t a flawless presentation but it looked good.

For the most part, sharpness satisfied. A couple of interiors suffered from a minor decline in delineation, but the majority of the film seemed accurate and concise. No issues with jagged edges or shimmering occurred, and I saw no edge haloes or source flaws.

Colors went down the stylized path, with a trend toward teal and amber. These seemed perfectly satisfactory given the visual choices.

Blacks appeared rich and taut, while low-light shots displayed nice clarity and smoothness. Overall, I remained pleased with the image.

Similar thoughts greeted the involving DTS-HD MA 5.1. As expected, violent scenes brought the most active information, as those used gunfire and other elements of mayhem to create a vivid sense of the material.

Music also created a good presence, as the score filled the speakers to the film’s advantage. All of these factors formed a lively soundscape.

Audio quality worked well, too. Music was dynamic and full, while effects appeared accurate and dynamic.

Speech seemed distinctive and concise, without edginess or other issues. The soundtrack added to the movie’s effectiveness.

Four short featurettes appear here. We find Story and Cast (2:40), Finding the True Story (), Humanity Within Tragedy (1:43) and Real-Life Heroes (2:24).

Across these, we hear from writer/director Anthony Maras and actors Dev Patel, Armie Hammer, Anupam Kher, Nazanin Boniadi, Jason Isaacs, and Tilda Cobham-Berney.

The programs look at story, cast, characters, performances, and the facts behind the fiction. Only minor insights arise, as these mostly exist to promote the film.

The disc opens with ads for Arctic, Teen Spirit, The Art of Self-Defense, The Beach Bum, Us, Family and The Best of Enemies. No trailer for Mumbai appears here.

At times, the powerful story behind Hotel Mumbai lets it pack a punch. However, the movie tends to cast too wide a net and it lacks the depth it needs to excel. The Blu-ray comes with very good picture and audio but it lacks substantial bonus materials. Mumbai deserves a look but don’t expect greatness from it.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
0 3:
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