I was so sure that I had previously blogged about 21 Grams. Seems I only mentioned it in passing in relation as to how it wasn’t as good as anything Atom Egoyan had ever made. Which kinda really scuppers what I was going to say about this, really.

In 2000, Alejandro González Iñárritu‘s Amores Perros suggested a staggering new talent on the scene. His big Hollywood follow-up (also written by Guillermo Arriaga) 21 Grams was a messy overblown melodrama, but well acted and oddly structured enough to remain in the ‘interesting’ pile.

Now we get the multi-Oscar nominated Babel. A sweeping world-wide tale of how all our lives are part of just one big cupcake, or some other such nonsense.

What this boils down to is Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett doing their serious panting acting stuff, and tons of really cracking unknown supporting actors dancing rings round them.

That’s about it. I won’t bother with what happens in Afghanisatan or Mexico as you’ll know if you’ve seen a trailer. If not, it’d spoil what little plot or tension their is. Were I being charitable, I’d suggest that the better sections based in Japan were an attempt at achieving the type of narrative you get in many of the films from there. But, I’d be being very charitable. If this was the idea for all three threads, it fails awfully. It’s just the Japanese bits fail less spectacularly.

It’s a film that feels it’s saying something deep and profound. It isn’t. It’s like as profound as the I’m-mad-me bloke is unhinged. Perhaps this says more about me than anything else, but it beggars belief how a film where one of the main plot threads is a schoolgirl flashing can be so tedious.

Sod it. You like interlocking tales, nudity, school uniforms and genuine touching humanity? Check out Egoyan’s Exotica. You can probably rent it and get a carry-out for the price of your trip to the cinema to see this rubbish.


Written by Tony Kiernan

31 January 2007 at 4:08 pm

Posted in Film

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