Feature

Babies

French director Thomas Balmès documents the lives of four infants from four different parts of the world: Japan, Namibia, Mongolia, and the United States.

Directed by Thomas Balmès
(PG)

***
A documentary follows four babies in different parts of the world.

Babies is a “sugar rush of irresistible cute joy,” said Owen Gleiberman in Entertainment Weekly. This “crowd-pleasing” documentary from French director Thomas Balmès follows four infants from four dramatically different parts of the world: Japan, Namibia, Mongolia, and the United States. Starting with birth and ending with first steps, his cinematic scrapbook lets audiences track one year of the little ones’ lives. To Balmès’ credit, Babies doesn’t “overdose on adorability”: He lets their days unfold without narration, expert commentary, or a too-strict structure. Without such narrative threads, however, this elaborate undertaking comes to seem like a gigantic “lost opportunity,” said Elizabeth Weitzman in the New York Daily News. Balmès refuses to raise provocative questions about cultural differences and conflicting parenting theories, so you start to “wonder why you’ve paid to see somebody else’s home movies.” Besides being a “very huggable movie experience,” Babies does have plenty to say, said Betsy Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times. By showing rather than telling, the film avoids distracting details and instead celebrates the universal experiences of infancy and parenthood.

Recommended

United States shoots down Chinese spy balloon over Atlantic Ocean
A suspected Chinese spy balloon over Montana.
99 Red Balloons?

United States shoots down Chinese spy balloon over Atlantic Ocean

10 things you need to know today: February 4, 2023
President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
Daily briefing

10 things you need to know today: February 4, 2023

A surge in violence in Pakistan
The rubble of a Peshawar mosque damaged in a suicide bombing.
Feature

A surge in violence in Pakistan

The Adani Group scandal, explained
Gautam Adani.
Briefing

The Adani Group scandal, explained

Most Popular

Yale honors Black girl who had the police called on her for spraying lanternflies
Spotted lanterflies
black girl magic

Yale honors Black girl who had the police called on her for spraying lanternflies

Eye drops recalled after being linked to drug-resistant infections
The bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa under a microscope.
recalls

Eye drops recalled after being linked to drug-resistant infections

McConaughey took movie role due to fortune teller's advice
Matthew McConaughey
how to cast a guy in one day

McConaughey took movie role due to fortune teller's advice