Babylon End: Is It The Most Disgusting Closing Scene In Movie History?

Babylon End: Is It The Most Disgusting Closing Scene In Movie History?

Babylon End: Is It The Most Disgusting Closing Scene In Movie History?

YYou can see filmmakers are worried about the future of cinema. James Cameron demands we all retry Imax escapism in his three hours avatar Consequence. Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans offers a fictional look at his childhood fascination with film magic. And Sam Mendes’s realm of light has Olivia Colman quirky about the power of the cinematic experience – like this viral Nicole Kidman ad, only more sincerely. But if the end of Babylon Damien Chazelle is clearly the most concerned director of all.

Another ode to the majesty of film, Babylon ends with a sickeningly saccharine sequence: a blooming, Oscar-style montage that stitches together clips from various notable films throughout history. From the silent era to the 21st century, it offers everything from Un Chien Andalou and The Passion of Joan of Arcto Tron, terminator 2, The Matrix and, disturbingly, the first avatar.

This visual assault on a sequence also riddled with pathetic shots of celluloid processing fluid has been described as an explosive celebration of cinema. To me, though, it’s more like the moving-image equivalent of someone yelling, “FILM! MOVIE! ARGHHH I LOVE THE MOVIE!” Alright if you appreciate Chazelle’s boldness here, but if you see a Na’vi appearing in a film by the director of whiplash and la la country made me convulse so badly my butt actually choked itself.

Further context is needed to understand why I reacted so strongly. Allegedly, Babylon is a film about the ups and downs of four people working in 1920s Hollywood. There’s mega-movie star Jack Conrad (Brad Pitt), whose hold on fame wanes as the industry transitions from silent to talkie. There’s Nellie LaRoy (Margot Robbie), an unpredictable aspiring actress who soon finds herself overwhelmed. There’s Manny Torres (Diego Calva), a film assistant who works his way up to studio manager. And there’s Sidney Palmer (Jovan Adepo), a talented trumpeter who quickly becomes disillusioned with the industry’s inherent racism.

Through these characters, we are shown the uglier side of Hollywood: the relentless churn of mediocre films; the cutthroat nature of fame; the riotous parties with mounds of cocaine, mass showers and exploding elephant butts. Sounds fun right? Well it is. I’m happy to say that I enjoyed about 74 percent of it Babylon. At one point I thought it might even be the best movie ever made. But then this ending came.

As it turns out, Babylon is basically a depraved retelling of the 1952s sing in the rain. When an older Manny walks into a movie theater in the final scene to watch this very film, he quickly realizes that the traumatic events of his Hollywood career have been reimagined as a musical comedy directed by Gene Kelly. As Manny understandably begins to cry, the camera pulls out and pans across the audience, revealing a sea of ​​faces that look significantly happier than his. You actually enjoy the movie!

The camera then hovers directly over the audience, giving us a bird’s-eye view of their heads. Or, as we’re probably supposed to perceive it, a bird’s-eye view of our own heads. Yes, in that moment we are meant to feel “seen,” as if someone had placed a massive, twisted mirror on the ceiling to watch themselves committing a shameful act; namely being part of a drone-like audience. The meaning behind it? I am not completely sure. Unless it’s about acknowledging the depressing fact that now more than ever, people need movies to keep themselves dumb and docile. avatar 3 coming next year by the way.

Be that as it may, this slightly insulting take is soon followed by the aforementioned film montage from Hell. colors flash. playing jazz Robert Patrick’s head reshapes. But when it’s over, something wonderful happens: Manny’s tears become tears of joy. Like the rest of the zombified audience, he’s now enjoying sing in the rain.

According to Chazelle himself, this is meant to be a moment of self-realization for Manny. “[He’s] thinking about its place in the larger scheme of things,” the director said Weekly entertainment. “And its place is, in a way, a lonely frame in the never-ending roll of celluloid that represents the history of this art form.” If that sounds a bit pretentious, that’s probably because it is. But the explanation goes on anyway. “Careers come and go, movie stars come and go. This is very scary on some level and can even be depressing. But on another level, and hopefully Manny reaches a place of peace here in the end, it’s comforting because you can’t help but be aware of how much bigger it is than you and how much you’re a part of it something bigger. Just being a small part of it is very special and eternal in its own way.”

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Brad Pitt as Jack Conrad and Diego Calva as Manny Torres

(Scott Garfield/Paramount Pictures)

Based on that interpretation, the final scene seems to suggest that while Manny was able to be part of such a wonderful industry, it was all worth it for Manny — all those overdosed actors, dead film extras, and subpar production. Even stranger, as part of the audience surrounding him, we’re expected to understand and even share his feelings. Essentially, Babylon urges us to celebrate cinema even though it has just demonstrated – for no less than three hours and nine minutes – how cynical, soulless and mediocre it can be.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of Chazelle. whiplash is the best film about jazz drums I’ve ever seen. and la la country moved me so much that after it was finished I called my other half and had a two hour chat about how brilliant it was. but Babylon, and especially its ending, just feels misjudged; another self-satisfied homage to Hollywood that makes you pant more than cry with happiness.

Like everyone else, I love a bit of escapism. But when the final scene of a movie tries to force that love down my throat, my natural reaction is to grab the nearest bag of popcorn and pour it generously with Krank.

“Babylon” is in cinemas

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