Babel: Synopsis

Babel: n. 1. In the Bible, a famous tower built by a united humanity to reach toward heaven, causing God in his anger to make each person involved speak different languages, halting the project and scattering a confused and disconnected people across the planet.

In the remote sands of the Moroccan desert, a rifle shot rings out – detonating a chain of events that will link an American tourist couple’s frantic struggle to survive, two Moroccan boys involved in an accidental crime, a nanny illegally crossing into Mexico with two American children and a Japanese teen rebel whose father is sought by the police in Tokyo. Separated by clashing cultures and sprawling distances, each of these four disparate groups of people are nevertheless hurtling towards a shared destiny of isolation and grief.

In the course of just a few days, they will each face the dizzying sensation of becoming profoundly lost – lost in the desert, lost to the world, lost to themselves — as they are pushed to the farthest edges of confusion and fear as well as to the very depths of connection and love.

In this mesmerizing and emotional film, acclaimed director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (“21 Grams,” “Amores Perros”) achieves a range never before seen in his films, in which by making himself invisible, he penetrates the different cultures, shot in three continents, directing actors and non-actors in four languages and making the hyper-realistic world co-habitate with the vision of the world of the imaginary, where sound and music are the emotional narrators. This film brings back the ancient concept of BABEL and questions its modem day implications: the mistaken identities, misunderstandings and missed chances for communication that, though often unseen, drive our modem lives. Babel explores the nature of the barriers and misunderstandings that seem to separate mankind.

Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Gael Garcia Bernal, and Koji Yakusho lead an international ensemble of actors and non-professional actors from Morocco, Tijuana and Tokyo, who enrich Babel’s take on cultural diversity and enhance its powerful remarks on cultural links and frontiers.

“The trouble is that we talk about the border as a place only, instead of an idea too. I guess that the real borderlines are the ones within us.” (Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu).