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Blind Dating DVD Review

Blind Dating movie poster Blind Dating

Theatrical Release: May 11, 2007 / Running Time: 99 Minutes / Rating: PG-13

Director: James Keach / Writer: Christopher Theo

Cast: Chris Pine (Danny), Eddie Kaye Thomas (Larry), Anjali Jay (Leeza), Jane Seymour (Dr. Evans), Jennifer Alden (Jasmine), Judith Benezra (Heidi), Katherine Flynn (Dolores), Frank Gerrish (Angelo), Pooch Hall (Jay), Stephen Tobolowsky (Dr. Perkins)

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By Christopher Disher

With a release limited to only 74 theaters and a domestic gross of just $90,560, it's easy to say very few people have seen, or heard of, Blind Dating. It managed to gross over half a million overseas and with DVD sales added to television distribution, odds are its viewership will grow to a still insignificant number.

One would likely expect Dating to be a made-for-TV movie, considering its cast and crew are largely made up of TV personalities. Instead, what's delivered is a polished but surprisingly amateurish film from veteran television actor-turned-director James Keach.
Although his directing experience consists mostly of sporadic TV episodes and telefilms, a number of theatrical distributions dot his filmography. In 1995 he directed Billy Bob Thornton and Robert Duvall in The Stars Fell on Henrietta and again worked with Thornton, this time the story writer, on the 2001 comedy Camouflage starring Leslie Nielsen. Perhaps his crowning achievement is producing Walk the Line, which earned him a Motion Picture Producer of the Year nomination from the Producers Guild of America. Needless to say, Keach's best work appears to be neither in front of nor behind the camera. Blind Dating reinforces this notion effortlessly.

Chris Pine, who plays Kirk in the upcoming Star Trek film, is blind but resilient Danny, a jobless young man who still lives at home with his parents. Full of temerity, Danny continually attempts to defy the stigma attached to his blindness, which bothers him so much that he goes to extraordinary lengths to dupe people into believing he can see. He walks around the city without a cane or guide dog and continually bumps into things. He risks bodily harm just to be normal and all he desires is for a girlfriend who can look past his blindness.

Being blind and not using a cane means you trip on toys like Elmer Fudd. Like a monkey looking in a mirror, Danny (Chris Pine) sees himself for the first time.

A visit to his ophthalmologist leads to a brief encounter with Leeza (Anjali Jay), the compassionate young receptionist who immediately takes interest in the cynical Danny. After a series of failed blind dates set-up by his oafish brother Larry (Eddie Kaye Thomas, "'Til Death"), which make up the bulk of the story time, Danny finally decides to pursue Leeza only to be pushed away when their relationship gets too close. Stuck in the Indian tradition of arranged marriage, Leeza must decide between her family’s wishes and her own while Danny battles with the prospect of seeing the world through the lens of a camera, synthetically connected to his brain.

The substance of the film tends to lean on Danny’s handicap and his character arc turns on accepting his disability. He struggles with the question of his appearance: is he attractive?
Can girls get past his lack of eyesight and instead love him for who he really is? This underlying problem makes the story interesting but doesn’t manage the save the film from failure. It starts off with promise and quickly becomes predictable as common situations and characters are introduced to us with no surprises, turns, or unexpected complications to make it engaging. Chris Pine succeeds at making his character convincing but the other performances are unable to overcome the shortfalls in the written dialogue.

As always, many fans of the romantic comedy genre will enjoy a film that stays true to the formula that Blind Dating never deviates from. There are moments to make you laugh and, if you force yourself, moments to make you cry. The true value of this film is in Danny’s character. Anyone who can sympathize with his situation will surely find this film enjoyable and even uplifting.

Buy Blind Dating on DVD from Amazon.com DVD Details

1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Dolby Digital 5.1 (English), Dolby Surround (English for the Visually Impaired)
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
Closed Captioned; Extras Not Subtitled
Release Date: February 5, 2008
Suggested Retail Price: $27.98
Single-sided, dual-layered disc (DVD-9)
Black Keepcase


The movie is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen with a clear transfer. It has the expected over-lit look of a romantic comedy. More notably, the DVD offers only one audio selection: 5.1 English Dolby surround. It lacks a much needed stereo track for viewers without a home theater system, considering the romantic comedy target audience. Still, a nice surround environment is something to tout to perspective blind viewers who, if they’re anything like Danny in the film, love to hear movies. The mix isn’t worthy of an Academy Award but manages to create a solid backdrop rich in environmental sounds. Most of the songs play low in the background and thus sacrifice any potential dynamics, leaving a soundtrack not many layers deep. The subtitles included in this North American release are the standard three: English, French, and Spanish.

"Dating" perhaps passes the bounds of a PG-13 rating with the sexual humor of this deleted scene, in which Danny and Larry (Eddie Kaye Thomas) shower at the gym. Director James Keach makes light of an already light comedy. It looks like crime tape strewn across the menu -- maybe for the hookers?


One bonus feature is a nice treat for the visually impaired: a separate audio track where actions are described by a narrator. The track hardly has any dramatic feel to it and other sounds from the film often play softly below the narration.
It's a nice option and many will be thankful for its offering.

No commentary exists but a generous selection of deleted scenes (15:52 in total) may be enough to compensate. Thanks to the easily navigable menus, the twelve cut sequences are easy to browse.

The only other noteworthy bonus is a 5-minute behind the scenes video, which mainly consists of cuts from the film spliced in with poorly-shot cast/crew interviews. What remains is the trailer for Blind Dating and three others: Feast of Love, The Comebacks, and Blue State

No music plays over the menus and they're not animated either. Packaging is standard, as is the cover artwork, which features a composite of the two brothers with three notorious blind dates and runs with a pink and pastel color scheme. There is no insert inside the case.

Danny and Leeza (Anjali Jay) eat sandwiches in one of their many intimate bench scenes. A hooker and a Japanese man. Need I say more?


Blind Dating is a traditional boy-meets-girl love story with an abnormal twist that propels it into the awkward and bizarre while at the same time pushing it to a level teetering towards the fresh. Ultimately, it fails at captivating attention and occasionally repulses with overtly crass sexual humor. Still, one can’t help but root for the couple as they overcome what limits them, all in the name of love.

More on the DVD / Buy from Amazon.com

Buy from Amazon.com

Related Reviews:
Wedding DazeThe Comebacks (Unrated Edition)Eagle vs SharkSuperbadKnocked UpSaving Sarah CainThe TV Set

The Cast of Blind Dating:
Chris Pine: The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement | Jane Seymour: Heidi
Stephen Tobolowsky: Wild HogsFreaky Friday (2003) | Frank Gerrish: Daddy Day Camp

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Reviewed February 6, 2008.

Text copyright 2008 DVDizzy.com. Images copyright 2007 Samuel Goldwyn Films, Milcoz Films, Catfish Productions, and 2008 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.
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