Decent Films Mail > Mailbag #20

Re: Babies (2010)

We went to see Babies with another family from our church … everyone loved it. This is the best movie now playing (as far as I know … not that I’ve seen everything in theatres, but from what I’ve read I’m not aware of anything now playing likely to displace Babies in my personal estimation). There is no good reason why Babies shouldn’t be bigger than March of the Penguins.

One question about your review. You make a point of saying that “you see no real reason” why children shouldn’t see this film, in spite of the “cultural and maternal nudity throughout.” Some Catholic parents would certainly be uncomfortable exposing their children to the nudity of the Namibian culture. In particular, parents may be concerned about exposing adolescent boys to the bare-breasted Himba mothers. From what you’ve written elsewhere, I know you agree that adolescent boys can be particularly at-risk in this regard. Any further thoughts?

I’m so glad you all enjoyed Babies! I wish it were even half as big as March of the Penguins … it certainly deserves to be bigger. Unfortunately, perhaps without a narrator like Morgan Freeman or Pierce Brosnan holding their hand (bless the filmmakers for not going that route!), mainstream American audiences aren’t sure they’ll know what to make of the film, or something. Even so, as art-house documentaries go it’s done all right in theaters and should do better on DVD.

The question you raise is too big for a mail column. I’ve deferred it to my blog post “Don’t Have a Cow, Man!

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