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I rarely go into Vin Diesel movies with high expectations. Let's face it, when you build a certain physique and persona you have to accept a little pigeon hole-ing as an actor. I read other reviews before watching this movie and removed it from my pre-order list and went for a rental. What a surprise to the upside. Some of the critique for this movie IS warranted and the ending, as you find it in the US edition, will leave questions. The most important attitude with which to see this movie is to enjoy the process and not look for simple gratification in the ending. As a movie set in the near future, this film tackles the challenge of envisioning new technology that is, if not realistic, still far from the utterly ridiculous. Many movies try to present those ideas and fail miserably.

***This is not just another dumbed down action spectacle***. One might be surprised to see it is actually a very ambitious, intelligent movie for this genre. Though any one part of the plot by itself may not be original, I found the sum total of it's parts refreshingly different. There are also spectacular visuals, very well orchestrated action scenes, thought provoking issues or conflicts and very wonderful performances by many actors, including Vin! Pay attention to the technologies and gadgets here and there. A little satire on religion and the questions of real faith and spirituality were also thought provoking and a little underhandedly funny. This is a really good movie that just couldn't do everything it wanted in the time allowed. Don't get me wrong, if I were rating the editing of this movie, it would be two stars. I have no doubt that it was butchered by idiots who had no faith in an original vision. I wish they would take the footage and re-edit the US version.

***Update: Amazon UK has a slightly longer version that fills in a few holes. Know that you like the movie before you spend the cash. However, they will deliver to US addresses relatively cheap. You may need a region two player or simply change the region on your laptop. Some blu are region free, I beleive the UK version is not.
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on July 27, 2012
I agree with the positive reviews of this film.

The best "uncut" version of this film is the two disc special edition ("EXTENDED CUT"). The editing is much better on the "extended cut" (more recent version). Babylon A.D. (Two-Disc Special Edition) The theater release for American audiences (the single disc version) was poorly cut . It eliminates much of the character development of the actors. It also omits much of the dialogue necessary to understand the film. However, the two disc special version is: (a) widescreen HD; (b) mixed much better so that you can hear the actors talking over the soundtrack (without subtitles); and (c) contains dialogue which explains the plot of the movie. The two-disc special version also includes a digital copy so that you can install it on your PC or Mac and view it on an iPod, iPhone, etc.

This film is based on the book Babylon Babies. The story in the book is about Melanie Thierry's character being a surrogate mother for two babies who represent the next step in human evolution. It is very difficult to understand the ending to Babylon AD without knowing that the babies she carries are special ("homo sapiens sapiens") genetically engineered children. Thierry's character, herself, is gifted, but, in the dark future, people think she is carrying a virus instead of recognizing her gifts and powers as a positive development for humanity.

In the opening narration Vin Diesel explains the film:

"Life is simple. Kill or be killed. . . . Don't get involved. . . . Always finish the job. [Mercenaries' Code] . . . . But I learned that you can't always walk away. Too bad it was the day I died."

The film is based in the not too distant (dark) future. Vin Diesel (Toorop) is a mercenary. He is on the terrorist list in the U.S. The film begins with him walking to his apartment in Russia where he lives as an expat former Marine.

At some point he meets up with Gerard Depardieu (an international thug) who hires him to escort a young woman (played by Melanie Thierry) to New York. Thierry plays an innocent intuitive who has special powers to sense danger, heal, and know how to do things without ever being taught. She is an empath who has been completely sheltered in a convent all of her life. Michelle Yeoh (in a very sexy and convincing role) plays one of the older nuns in the convent who goes with Diesel and Thierry to New York.

The plot that unfolds is witty, action-packed and full of great one-liners. For example, when Diesel meets Yeoh for the first time, she tells him that she has three rules: (1) She must go wherever Thierry goes; (2) he is to protect Thierry from the corruption of the outside world and (3) no foul language." Diesel responds with a wry laugh and says: "Sh__. Well it's a tough world out there, Sister. (changing his laugh to a look of dead seriousness) You listen to my one and only rule: Don't f____ with me or I'll leave you in the middle of nowhere with nothing but your a___ to sell to get back here to your perfect world." Only Vin Diesel could get away with that line.

In another scene, a little later, Diesel, Thierry and Yeoh are walking through a marketplace in Siberia. It is dirty, noisy and chaotic. Diesel tells Yeoh and Thierry to watch out because it's a dangerous place - "No Mercy for the weak." Yeoh says: " Just because we are peaceful does not mean we are weak." Diesel says: "It does here."

I had to use the subtitles on the single disc version (because of the poorly mixed soundtrack) to get some of the subtle humor in the film, but, there is sophisticated humor in almost every scene. Charlotte Rampling plays an all too convincing role as the corrupt head of large, popular, mass-media religion. At one point she is chastising her staff for letting Diesel get away with Melanie Thierry. She tells them that they have ruined twenty years of her work. Since Melanie Thierry is pregnant, and still a virgin, she was a miracle and had them on the verge of being a "bona fide religion." This is great sarcasm and social satire and worthy of a five star rating.

The movie makes more sense if you can read a little Russian. Although this is never brought out in the film, Diesel is playing a clone. In one of the scenes you will see the Russian word for "clone" tattooed in Cyrillic across his knuckles.

The uncut version Babylon A.D. (Uncut) contains about fifteen extra minutes of fascinating action footage that was intended for European and Russian audiences. It is common for stars like Vin Diesel, in Russia and Europe, to have films that are three to three and a half hours in length. The uncut version is worth watching for anyone who is a fan of any of the actors.Babylon A.D. (Uncut)

The original soundtrack is available Babylon A.D. (OST). Unfortunately, it is missing one of the best pieces in the film. The film opens, and ends, with a very well-done (and well-mixed) performance of "Dueuces" by Achozen. This rap piece isn't available for purchase. You can listen to it on YouTube. The score in this film was done by Atli Örvarsson, an Icelandic composer who works with Hans Zimmer (As good as it Gets, Black Hawk Down, Last Samurai . . . .) The score is an impressive, surreal blend of modern rap, African rhythms and classical music. It is one of the best features of this film.

This film is directed by Mathieu Kassovitz. Kassovitz is a relatively obscure French actor/director who produces A+ Five ***** films such as Amélie

I hope you enjoy this review as much as I enjoy this film.
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on November 5, 2010
You can't go into this with high expectations. It's a Vin Diesel, cyberpunk action flick. It's got action, a decent plot, straightforward characters, and a bit of substance, especially at the end. You want art, angst, or profound nihilism, look elsewhere. Loosen up, rent it, sit back and enjoy your popcorn. It's worth the price of admission.
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on September 10, 2015
Babylon A.D. could have, and should have, been better than it is. While it passes as suitable entertainment for a rainy Saturday evening, the film lacks in meaning and purpose, though it is not for a shortage of effort. Casual moviegoers should enjoy the film well enough, though hardcore Science Fiction fans will leave the experience shrugging at first, and perhaps disappointed later. 20th Century Fox's Blu-ray release of Babylon A.D. is much better than the film itself, featuring standout video and audio presentations, along with a smattering of bonus materials that should please those in search of behind-the-scenes materials. Despite the superior Blu-ray presentation, the film is likely best enjoyed as a rental.
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on December 18, 2015
Vin Diesel fans will find a familiar vehicle for him here. Sullen and tough talking you could close your eyes and be in a Furious film, there is no difference in his performance. While I would have liked a lot more science fiction in this film it was entertaining though the story is confusing and plot holes abound. I like Diesel and his tough guy persona but he needs to change up the performance now and then, if even a little.
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on August 21, 2016
I'm not a huge vin diesel fan but he is very good in sci/fi films. This was a good futuristic type movie with a appocolypic feel to it. Definitely worth checking out if you haven't seen it or if you have seen why not watch it again it has a good replay factor to it.
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on November 25, 2016
Action is good and good mmix of actors. plot is a little thin but most vin diesel movies are. I think the ending could have been better, it looks like they ran out of time so cut and rushed the ending a little.
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on March 6, 2016
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on March 5, 2016
Loved the movie!! It has me on my seat several time. This cut of the movie actually had a few scenes that flowed in perfectly together. And the ending of the movie really had me surprised!! Recommend this movie to anyone who wants to watch it.
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on August 11, 2015
This movie was really awful. I am a big Vin Diesel fan, and this movie had plenty of big stars and budget. But the directing and editing was awful. The story seemed like it was written by a 15 year old, extremely sophomoric, trite, predictable, boring and cliché.
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