Growing up in a Dangerous World
Review by Ross Anthony

At two and a half hours, Babel spends a lot of time being bleak. Itís certainly edgy and hyper-real. The cinematography purposely depletes itself of warm colors. The actors give strong performances, though if youíre primarily interested in Pitt or Blanchett Ė they only appear intermittently as the film has many other characters and stories. Ultimately, these two donít have the kind of screen time (nor dynamics) you might be expecting.

The director concerns himself with tension and stress. With independent (yet linked) stories in Morocco, Mexico and Japan, the film takes its sweet time revealing the nature of its big picture. And ultimately, itís really not a film about an international incident. Itís more a film about that universal visceral bond between members of a family unit. Likewise, itís not the big action picture the trailers may lead you to believe, itís really more of an artsy independent that has a couple of big name leads.

Overall, intriguing and interesting with some very strong dramatic moments. But the short supply of warm moments, simply isnít enough to save the film from an overwhelming dismal feel. This, of course, is quite a matter of personal taste. You may love to spend a bleak night at the cinema. As matter of personal taste, again, viewers may not appreciate the sexual suggestions among under-aged characters. Some will argue that the ďrealĒ graphic nature of those images enrich the film. Still, Iím sure it wonít just be conservatives who feel the film goes too far, in this respect.

Lastly, the coincidence factor undermines the realism.

This film screened at a Laemmle Theatre.

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  • Coach Carter. Copyright © 2006.
  • Starring Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Gael Bernal, Koji Yakusho, Adriana Barraza, Rinko Kikuchi, Said Tarchani, Boubker El Caid, Elle Fanning, Nathan Gamble, Mohamed Akhzam, Peter Wight, Abdelkader Bara, Mustapha Rachidi, Driss Roukhe.
  • Directed by Alejandro Inarritu.
  • Screenplay by Guillermo Arriaga from an idea by Arriaga and Inarritu.
  • Produced by Inarritu, Jon Kilik, Steve Golin at Paramount/ Anonymous.

Grade..........................B- (1.5/4)

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Copyright © 1998-2023 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: or call 1-800-767-7186. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

Last Modified: Monday, 20-Nov-2006 08:43:22 PST