Babylon first reactions are in: Is Damien Chazelle’s new film ‘delightfully delicious’ or ‘ambitious mess’?

Entertainment Hollywood

Babylon, one of the most anticipated films of the year, got an early screening at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills and the first reactions have sent film Twitter into a frenzy. Margot Robbie’s performance has been a hoot.

Babylon marks the return of director Damien Chazelle to the award race after First Man, La La Land and Whiplash. Damein was the youngest to win the Academy Award for Best Director, back in 2017 for La La Land. Babylon is touted as the director’s tribute and love letter to the Golden Age of Hollywood, specially to the excesses that marked the shift from silent era to the talkies.

Reactions were not uniform in their praise for the 188-minute epic, which ranged from “delightfully delicious” and “rebellious” to “an ambitious mess.” Jazz Tangcay, senior artisans editor of Variety, showered high praise on Justin Hurwitz’s score, calling it “outstanding and absolutely epic,” while calling Margot Robbie’s performance her best to date. Courtney Howard of Variety tweeted that Babylon felt like a strange mix of Singing in the Rain and Boogie Nights, and called the film, “a dazzling, dizzying cacophony of demented depravity,” while calling the costume and production design “awe-inducing.” Lauren Huff of Entertainment Weekly praised the film saying, “It’s an absolute spectacle of filmmaking from start to finish.”

Perri Nemiroff of Collider was less enthusiastic in her opinion, citing that even though the film has “some incredibly strong sequences,” it overall “lacked focus.” Scott Menzel of We Live Entertainment called Babylon, “an ambitious mess of a film,” that is “a love letter to cinema that made me hate cinema.”

Margot Robbie’s performance as Nellie LaRoy, has received unanimous praise as critics called her performance “live wire,” and that she “shines brighter than ever.” Margot performance in Babylon is highly touted to land her third Academy Award nomination.

Margot Robbie, Brad Pitt, and Diego Calva lead Babylon alongside a cast that includes Jean Smart, Tobey Maguire, Li Jun Li and Jovan Adepo. Babylon opens in US theatres on December 23.

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