Guest / Limited Access /
Our Rating
3½ Stars - Good
Average Rating
(not rated yet)ADD YOURSHelp
Mpaa Rating
R (for violence, graphic nudity, sexual content, language and some drug use)
Directed By
Alejandro González Iñárritu
Run Time
2 hours 23 minutes
Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Mohamed Akhzam, Peter Wight
Theatre Release
November 10, 2006 by Paramount Vantage

It's bullet time at the movies. Martin Scorsese's cops and crooks are clashing are unleashing storms of bullets, and Clint Eastwood's Marines are firing more shots than anyone could hope to count. But in Alejandro González Iñárritu's new film Babel, a single gunshot causes an international crisis. It's a shot heard around the world, and one you won't forget anytime soon.

Who is to blame for that shattering blast? The adolescent shooter? His father, who entrusted him with the rifle? The man who sold them the gun?

In the world according to Iñárritu, we must look past that shot to understand the root cause of the crisis. Like a surgeon exposing tumors, this talented director reveals the fundamental flaw common to everyone involved in calamity. It's a disease that knows no borders. And it runs deeper than any bullet wound.

Babel takes its title from the Genesis tale in which God punishes and scatters an arrogant people by confusing their languages. The film clearly demonstrates that the separation continues. Fault lines run between nations and traditions, but they also splinter to divide communities, families, and marriages. A simple dispute between brothers can tear a rift in history, and a gesture of grace between strangers can make a difference too.

To demonstrate this division, Iñárritu and his screenwriter, Guillermo Arriago, weave plots through Babel's 142 minutes, continuing a trend of complicated big-screen tapestries. Many will compare it to Crash, Magnolia, Syriania, and Traffic. But it's also worthwhile to compare it to Iñárritu's first two films, which were similarly convoluted—the critically acclaimed Amores Perros and his first American effort, 21 ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Browse All Movie Reviews By:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
TrendingAttempt to Market Anti-Porn Ministry to Mark Driscoll Fans Goes Bad
Attempt to Market Anti-Porn Ministry to Mark Driscoll Fans Goes Bad
Craig Gross on XXXchurch email blast to Resurgence list: 'They sold us your email for a penny.'
Editor's PickWhat Christianophobia Looks Like in America
What Christianophobia Looks Like in America
New Study: Champions of religious freedom tell Christians, 'Keep your faith to yourselves.'
Christianity Today
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

October 2006

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.