Babylon A.D.

2008-09-05 17:10
What it's about:

Toorop (Vin Diesel) is a mercenary living in the socially decaying Russia of the not-too-distant future. He is offered a safe passage back to his home in America, where he is a fugitive, on condition that he escorts Aurora (Melanie Thierry) to New York. Unaware of her powers, and the world-shattering secret she carries, he agrees, and is accompanied by her guard, Sister Rebeka (Michelle Yeoh), from the monastery where she was raised. They have barely begun their journey, when they are attacked by people who are after Aurora, starting a desperate fight for their lives.

What we thought of it:

Babylon AD has to be one of the most disappointing sci-fi movies to appear in the last several years. There have been worse, possibly, but when you consider the combination of cult director Mathieu Kassovitz (La Haine (1995) and Crimson Rivers (2000)), reliable action star Vin Diesel and an all round quality cast, you expect something interesting if not decent. Sadly, the combination of these ingredients gives us a polished turd of the worst kind. So who said the French had good taste in movies?

The story is adapted from a novel by Maurice Dantec, but it runs like a mash up of Blade Runner (1982) and Children of Men (2006) with none of the merits of either. Jumping between locations constantly, it’s hard to follow exactly where the characters are and how they got there, let alone what is going on. Vin Diesel growls and looks tough, but it just doesn’t work well set against a lacklustre backdrop of confusion.

There is the odd thrilling bit of action, but it actually works to the film’s detriment and contrasts badly against far less convincing scenes. More often than not, the scene is set for some showdown or daring escape, and then it all goes horribly wrong. There is one scene in which a group of assailants actually foot skate (parkour if you’re French) across walls and rooftops to attack the Toorop’s party, in what is possibly the lamest attempt by any action movie to be cool, ever.

To top it all off, Babylon AD also sports a hurried, inconclusive ending that explains very little while still being corny. I hope the author was paid decently, because this movie is going to vomit all over his reputation as a storyteller.

Don’t watch Babylon AD. It’s awful. Just plain awful. It won’t matter whether you want action or sci-fi, it fails to deliver, and if you’re a hardcore Vin Diesel fan, you are far better off waiting for the fourth installment in the Fast and the Furious series. Avoid at all costs.

- Ivan Sadler

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A mercenary is tasked with escorting a mysterious girl from Russia to America, unaware that she is carrying a world-changing secret that many people will kill for.

Joecartoon 2008/09/05 11:41 AM
Babylons A.D I disagree... I bought a bootleg copy of the movie from an intersection in Boksburg opposit the mall and I thought it was rather good. Although halfway through I realised it was actually a copy of Jenna's Playhouse... Still I think that counts for something...
yvette 2008/09/05 2:02 PM
babylon ad i think you are always very quick to give bad comment but actually you are the incompetent ones. please stop that and if you can do it better than do it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Ivan 2008/09/05 3:54 PM
To Yvette If you feel so strongly about it Yvette, why don't you rush off, buy a ticket and watch it, then post your comment? I'm just trying to warn people not to waste their money on crap, but since you want to, go right ahead. Idiot.
Max 2008/09/05 6:34 PM
To Ivan Haha, Ivan, it's funny to see you getting pissed off, hey. Well, I guess it's the bad movie harvest month. July~August was pumped to the top, now it's just plain crap out there.
Marius 2008/09/05 8:03 PM
Turds Vin seems to play in crappy movies lately. Lets hope the new fast and furious movie will be better.
PhilthyPhil 2008/09/06 11:22 AM
Poor yvette.. Ag nee ! dat ouk was can liking to gives dat bad review for her hero's like movie hey..... Cone now Yvette, skattie.The movie is a turd, it was painful to watch. Just because it's Vinnie does not mean the movie is good, get it ? So use some common sense hun, and don't just assume. Baby steps,mmmkay.
The_Real_Ivan 2008/09/06 11:47 AM
To "Ivan" and Yvette "Ivan" - Thanks for the stormy reply to Yvette. Could not have said it better myself. But do try to find your won identity. Thanks in advance. Yvette - Be my guest, go see the move and report back.
Ivan 2008/09/08 12:50 PM
to "the real Ivan" I already have my "won identity", part of which is being a movie critic who occasionally defends his opinions against insults by semi literate clowns with nothing to say. To everyone else, avoid this boring crap - it's not even worth watching for free.
Loose 2008/09/09 1:05 PM
Sigh.... Oh Vinnie, come back all is forgiven Even the trailer is bad, and that usually contains take-outs of the best of the movie..... oh woe is me...
nikita 2008/09/17 4:31 PM
babylon ad i thought it was an entertaining movie. It was also interesting- the new world is fascinating and the ending shows the truth about religion!
Ryan 2008/10/03 7:49 PM
Cookin Flippin awesome!!!!!!
LEBOGANG 2008/10/13 9:58 PM
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