This post contains affiliate links.
I love inspirational and heartwarming movies. Especially those that empower women. That is what I got with Queen of Katwe. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to see it when it was in theaters last year because it did not play in my little local theater (the down side to living in upstate New York). So when I received an advance copy courtesy of Disney, I could barely wait to watch it. I had been told about it and had read about it, but nothing could prepare me for how much I would enjoy this film. If you like feel good movies based on true stories – this one is for you.
Disney’s “Queen of Katwe is the inspirational journey of a young girl from the streets of Uganda to world-class chess player. It has earned widespread critical acclaim, including a 93% Certified Fresh critics consensus on Rotten Tomatoes. The triumphant film, which is based on a true story, arrives home on Blu-ray™, DVD and On-Demand on Jan. 31.
The in-home release of “Queen of Katwe” takes viewers behind-the-scenes with filmmakers, as well as the cast and their real-life counterparts, through extensive bonus features, including a three-part documentary highlighting the amazing personal stories behind the film; audio commentary by director Mira Nair (“Salaam Bombay!,” “Mississippi Masala,” “Monsoon Wedding”); a short film by Nair depicting the life of Robert Katende; in-studio access to 15-time GRAMMY® Award-winning recording artist Alicia Keys during the creation of her new original song “Back to Life;” deleted scenes; and more.
“Queen of Katwe” is based on the vibrant true story of a young girl (Madina Nalwanga) from the streets of Uganda whose world changes when she is introduced to the game of chess, and, as a result of the support she receives from her family and community, is instilled with the confidence and determination she needs to pursue her dream of becoming an international chess champion. It is a remarkable story of perseverance against all odds that will leave viewers feeling humbled and inspired. According to director Mira Nair, “The triumph of the human spirit is not to weep for what we don’t have but to focus on what we do have and allow that to take us to a place we never imagined possible.”
The film stars David Oyelowo, Golden Globe® nominated for his portrayal of Martin Luther King Jr. in “Selma,” as dedicated chess mentor Robert Katende; Lupita Nyong’o, who earned worldwide acclaim with her Oscar®-winning performance in “12 Years a Slave,” as fiercely determined mother Harriet; and luminous newcomer Madina Nalwanga as chess champion Phiona Mutesi.
Bonus features include*
BLU-RAY & DIGITAL HD:
- Queen Of Katwe: Their Story – Discover the stories behind the people who came together to bring the film to life, and how they reflect the vibrant community, culture and spirit it celebrates.
- A Fork, A Spoon & A Knight – Director Mira Nair’s short film about Robert Katende, a boy who grows up to transform a Ugandan city into a globally renowned chess sanctuary.
- In The Studio With Alicia Keys – Go behind-the-scenes with Alicia Keys for an inspiring look at the song’s recording.
- Alicia Keys “Back To Life” Lyric Video – Sing along with on-screen lyrics.
- Young Cardamom & HAB “#1 Spice” Music Video – The Ugandan hip-hop duo bring the flavor in a music video directed by Mira Nair.
- Audio Commentary – With Director Mira Nair.
- Deleted Scenes (8) – With Introductions by Director Mira Nair.
- Graduation – Robert is alone at his graduation.
- Job Application – Robert checks in on the status of his job application.
- Dancing and Rent – Phiona joins in dancing with local girls before the landlady pulls her away.
- Entering the Hospital – Harriet tries to look presentable as they rush Brian to the hospital.
- Escape from the Hospital – The family sneaks out of the hospital.
- They Can’t Go to Budo – Robert second-guesses taking the kids to the competition at King’s College Budo.
- Flood (Extended Scene) – A nearly 7-minute scene before, during and after the house is flooded.
- Phiona’s Chess Club – Phiona comes full circle as she teaches a little boy the same lessons Robert taught her in chess club.
- Audio Commentary
- Alicia Keys “Back to Life” Lyric Video
- Young Cardamom & HAB “#1 Spice” Music Video
*Bonus features may vary by retailer