[Screen It]

 

"BABYLON"
(2022) (Diego Calva, Margot Robbie) (R)


At-A-Glace Content Summary

Alcohol/Drugs Extreme
Blood/Gross Stuff Extreme
Disrespectful/Bad Attitude Extreme
Frightening/Tense Scenes Heavy
Gun/Weapons Extreme
Imitative Behavior Extreme
Jump Scenes Mild
Music (Scary/Tense) None
Music (Inappropriate) Heavy
Profanity Extreme
Sex/Nudity Extreme
Smoking Extreme
Tense Family Scenes Heavy
Topics to Talk About Heavy
Violence Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Dramedy: An assistant and an aspiring actress rise through the studio system in the era of Hollywood's transition from silent films to talkies.
PLOT:

It's 1926 and Manuel "Manny" Torres (DIEGO CALVA) is a low-level assistant to Bob Levine (FLEA) who works for studio executive Don Wallach (JEFF GARLIN). Manny's tasked with a wide variety of duties, such as delivering an elephant to a decadent party thrown at the exec's Bel Air mansion.

It's there that Manny meets aspiring actress Nellie LaRoy (MARGOT ROBBIE) who crashes the party and takes in the sights, be they Lady Fay Zhu (LI JUN LI) performing a sultry song accompanied by trumpet player Sidney Palmer (JOVAN ADEPO) and his jazz band, or Jack Conrad (BRAD PITT), the top silent film star in the world who tries to help his lovelorn producer friend, George Munn (LUKAS HAAS), get over his latest breakup.

When a young actress there overdoses, Bob randomly picks Nellie out of the crowd as her replacement, and she shows up the next day at the movie set where multiple films are simultaneously being shot as film journalist Elinor St. John (JEAN SMART) chronicles the activities.

While Jack -- who's since tagged Manny as his assistant -- shoots an epic with a temperamental German director (SPIKE JONZE), Nellie shoots a western under the direction of Ruth Adler (OLIVIA HAMILTON) and quickly proves she has what it takes to be a silent film actress.

As time passes and her star rises, so does Manny's as he ascends through the studio system, with both having to contend with the benefits and detriments of being involved in the world of making movies.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
The big cast might be enticing for some, which also holds true for those who are fans of movies about moviemaking.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For strong and crude sexual content, graphic nudity, bloody violence, drug use, and pervasive language.


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