Sunday, May 09, 2010

Little Lives

World Magazine | Movies
Megan Basham

Beyond cliché, Babies shows the preciousness of infancy, anywhere

It is clear that French documentary-maker Thomas Balmès set out on his latest project with no political point to make, no ideology to espouse, and no axe of any kind to grind. Babies (rated PG, though with National Geographic-style nudity) follows the first year of four newborns—nothing more, nothing less.

Ponijao of Namibia, Bayar of Mongolia, Mari of Tokyo, and Hattie of San Francisco are born into wildly different environments with varying levels of wealth, but none seem to want for any necessity. Without indoor plumbing or, in Ponijao's case, even diapers, the Third World infants experience the same milestones as their First World counterparts: smiling, babbling, bathing, crawling. Read more

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