Critics Consensus

Babies is a joyous celebration of humankind that's loaded with adorable images, but it lacks insight and depth.



Total Count: 112


Audience Score

User Ratings: 35,014
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Movie Info

Re-defining the nonfiction art form, Babies joyfully captures on film the earliest stages of the journey of humanity that are at once unique and universal to us all. The film simultaneously follows four babies around the world -- from birth to first steps. The children are, in order of on-screen introduction: Ponijao, who lives with her family near Opuwo, Namibia; Bayarjargal, who resides with his family in Mongolia, near Bayanchandmani; Mari, who lives with her family in Tokyo, Japan; and Hattie, who resides with her in San Francisco, Calif.

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Critic Reviews for Babies

All Critics (112) | Top Critics (35)

  • A simple idea, but very nicely done by French documentarian Thomas Balmès.

    Mar 3, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Andrew Pulver

    Top Critic
  • The movie is pleasing -- who doesn't love gurgling babies? -- but as anodyne as a series of episodes from America's Funniest Home Videos.

    May 10, 2010 | Full Review…

    David Denby

    New Yorker
    Top Critic
  • Presents itself as an ethnographic meditation on the first year of life but is better approached as an "oooooh" and "awww" fest...

    May 10, 2010 | Full Review…
  • Really, it's a nature documentary, except that the topic is human nature and the subjects are the only humans on the planet whose behaviour is unaffected by the camera.

    May 7, 2010 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
  • Blessed with no narration, an absence of gimmickry and an embracing love for its subject matter, Babies is as sweet, joyful and filled with curiosity as a you-know-what.

    May 7, 2010 | Rating: B | Full Review…

    Tom Long

    Detroit News
    Top Critic
  • Babies begins to gain telling traction as the small triumphs start to come faster toward the sixth-month mark. Things begin to look up once the infants begin to, well, look up.

    May 7, 2010 | Rating: 2.5/4

Audience Reviews for Babies

  • May 16, 2016
    An experience akin to staring at an aquarium for 80 minutes and observing the fishes in their habitat - which can be something interesting in the case of babies from different cultures, only not for so long. But still, babies are so cute and adorable that they make it worth it.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Apr 28, 2012
    Watched in Psychology class, interesting documentary, but not great. There needed to have some sort of dialogue or voice over, but there was none.
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Aug 21, 2011
    "Babies" is a slight documentary that seeks to detail the lives of babies in Namibia, Mongolia, Tokyo and San Francisco in a cinema verite style which works for and against the documentary. On the one hand, there are no annoying judgmental voiceovers which also sadly means we do not get to hear from the parents. That leads to a mostly visual approach which focuses on the most photogenic subjects which are definitely the babies with the parents usually just out of the frame.(The cats would definitely disagree with this assessment as they have a way of finding themselves in the frame in order for them to lobby to be the subjects of the sequel.) So, the movie does not take full advantage of its otherwise global approach and provides little true insight with the exception of Namibia, which unlike the other locations, the father is absent and there is a permanent extended family, which might not be out of necessity as it is out of tradition.
    Walter M Super Reviewer
  • May 16, 2011
    When a sequel comes out I like to go back and watch the previous movies to refresh my memory so I don't miss anything. Well, in June we're having our first child, and what better way to get ready than to watch a documentary called "Babies." This is probably the cutest movie you will ever see. No narration, just four different babies, from different cultures, from birth to year one. Like the babies themselves, the movie is short and very sweet. There are some moments where the babies expressions make you want to cry, and moments where you will almost cry from laughing so hard. There's even some moments, where as Emily would say, "What in the world?" This is a very touching, cute movie, that I think almost everyone will enjoy.
    Everett J Super Reviewer

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