Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Movie Review: "Babylon A.D." (2008)

Director: Mathieu Kassovitz
Year: 2008
Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

A mercenary is hired to transport a very special woman from a convent in Russia to the United States for reasons unknown to him.  

"Babylon A.D." is directed by Mathieu Kassovitz, who has previously made films like "Crimson River" and "Gothika." He also helped write the screenplay with Joseph Simas and Éric Besnard, and the project is based on the novel "Babylon Babies" by Maurice G. Dantec. It stars Vin Diesel as Toorop, a former soldier-turned-mercenary. He is hired to transport a woman named Aurora, played by Mélanie Thierry, from her home at a convent in Russia to the United States. She is escorted at all times by Sister Rebeka, played by Michelle Yeoh, who acts as her guardian. Meanwhile, all kinds of people are trying to stop them so they can get their hands on Aurora for "reasons"!

This future-themed sci-fi action thriller is a complete mess from start to finish. The narrative is disjointed as hell. To make matters worse, the film is poorly edited and sloppy. Scenes are thrown in all over to the point where very little makes sense. Part of the problem lies with the casting of Vin Diesel, who has had a tendency to mumble his lines throughout his career, but never to the extent we see in "Babylon A.D." There were a few times when it is so bad, we wish we had put the subtitles on our television. Even then, we half expected them to read "Terglap serfunct bleepblorp" and "Imnt hdg Ycld hv nkd." There are also a few abrupt tonal changes where it is painfully obvious the studio thought it best to meddle in the final product. As one may imagine, nothing good comes from studio interference. At one point, it seems like Toorop is a spirit brother of Xander Cage, channeling his every move, or at least filmmakers wanted him to in an attempt to add more unnecessary action to the story. As unnatural as some of these action sequences are when worked around its clunky sci-fi thriller casing, without them, we would be left with nothing but characters we don't care about fighting for something that doesn't matter and doesn't make sense. No attempt to create a stylish, futuristic landscape will make up for the poorly put together, barely finished boring story, which is the summary of "Babylon A.D." in a nutshell. This movie is better off forgotten, and Vin Diesel should thank his lucky stars he got himself into better acting situations as he is not essentially able to write this flop out of his career.

My Rating: 3/10
BigJ's Rating: 3.5/10
IMDB's Rating: 5.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 6%
Do we recommend this movie: AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE!!!

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