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Dead on arrival, foul "Babylon" is one of the worst movies of 2022


Starring Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Diego Calva, Jean Smart, Jovan Adepo, Li Jun Li, P.J. Byrne, Flea, Tobey Maguire, Lukas Haas, Olivia Hamilton, Max Minghella, Rory Scovel, Katherine Waterston, Jeff Garlin, Eric Roberts, Ethan Suplee, Samara Weaving and Olivia Wilde. Written and directed by Damien Chazelle. Now playing at Toronto theatres. 189 minutes. PG

⭐️ (out of 4)

Peter Howell

Movie Critic

Damien Chazelle's epic Hollywood dung splat "Babylon" is an over-the-top ode to the Tinseltown of yore. It's set in the late 1920s, as silent films begin to yield to "the Talkies," but what this movie turns into is a bad MAD Magazine parody of itself. Margot Robbie is game as an aspiring actor and dedicated partier; so is Brad Pitt as a fading silent film superstar. But both are wasted by a scattershot script. Diego Calva’s immigrant saga and Jean Smart’s journalistic antics impress despite the overall chaos, which includes flung elephant feces, projectile vomiting and other airborne bodily fluids, many of which are hurled in the opening bacchanal. Will "Babylon" come to be known as Chazelle’s folly? I hope so. It's already dead on arrival at theatres. 🌓

(Originally published in the Toronto Star.)

Twitter: @peterhowellfilm


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