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BABYLON – Justin Hurwitz

January 3, 2023 1 comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

The first half hour of Babylon, director Damien Chazelle’s epic look at the excesses of early Hollywood in the 1920s, is a sensory overload that feels like too much of everything. It’s a literal orgy of sex, drugs, and debauchery, drinking and dancing and music and good times blended with the sort of bacchanalian overkill that would make even the most hardened party goer question their judgement. Within the opening few minutes we are treated to scenes of, among other things, a grossly overweight man receiving a golden shower, someone snorting a literal mountain of cocaine, dwarves on phallus-shaped pogo sticks ‘ejaculating’ onto a crowd, a lounge singer crooning about playing with ‘her girl’s pussy’, and an elephant with the worst case of diarrhea you have ever seen. But, somehow, out of this initially overwhelming celebration of Pasolini-esque depravity, a compelling story emerges focusing on three main characters: silent film matinee idol actor Jack Conrad (Brad Pitt), ambitious but damaged starlet Nellie LaRoy (Margot Robbie), and idealistic Mexican immigrant Manny Torres (Diego Calva), who just wants to work in the movies. Read more…