03 h 09 m
Damien Chazelle
Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Diego Calva
"Decadence and Dreams: A Romp Through Hollywood`s Excess in `Babylon`"

Posted Monday, Nov 13, 2023 85

Set in the late 1920s during the transition from silent films to talkies, `Babylon` chronicles the lives of various Hollywood insiders as they navigate the seismic shifts of the entertainment industry.

`Babylon` is a bacchanalian exploration of excess, ambition, and the transformative nature of cinema. The film juxtaposes moments of sheer ecstasy with the brutality of ruined careers, capturing the dualities of an industry known for both its magic and mercilessness.

The ensemble cast delivers with aplomb, showcasing the wide spectrum of Hollywood archetypes from starry-eyed ingénues to fading luminaries. The characters are etched with precision, revealing the human frailties beneath their glamorous veneers.

The direction navigates this complex narrative with a bold stylization that feels synchronous with the period, intentionally pushing boundaries to envelop the audience in the film`s uninhibited spirit.

Babylon movie review

The musical score parallels the film’s shifting eras with a soundtrack that both honors the jazz-infused energy of the 1920s and foreshadows the changes to come, deftly supporting the heightened emotional beats of the narrative.

The cinematography captures the grandeur and the grime of early Hollywood, crafting a luscious visual feast that bounces between the polished and the profane.

Production design is nothing short of stellar, flamboyantly recreating the period with meticulous eye for detail, from opulent set-pieces to the contrastingly squalid shadows where the less fortunate reside.

Special effects reinforce the era`s film-making magic and chaos, adding layers of spectacle and serving as a meta-commentary on the art of cinema itself.

Babylon movie review

Though bold and dynamic, the editing sometimes suffers from an overindulgent pace, which may test the patience of viewers but also serves as a mirror to the movie`s narrative of excess.

The film`s epic sprawl may feel unwieldy, with an oscillating tempo that collides rapid-fire sequences with languorous ones, designed to evoke the unpredictable rhythms of the movie industry.

Sharp and frenetic, the dialog crackles with period-accurate jargon and wit, although it sometimes spins into a dizzying verbal carousel that challenges the ear.

While `Babylon` endeavors to capture the big picture of a pivotal era, its lavish focus on decadence might overshadow the intimate moments. The film is as messy as the history it portrays, which will either captivate or alienate, but never leaves one indifferent.

`Babylon` engulfed me in its raucous tale of ambition and ruin. The sheer audacity of its excessive narrative made for a cinematic experience that pierced the veil between storytelling and lived reality, leaving me with a sense of nostalgic for an era I never knew - a reflection of the allure and danger of Hollywood`s golden days. Despite its occasional excess, the film resonated with a raw portrayal of struggle and triumph that is at once universal and uniquely tethered to the dreams woven by the silver screen.