Babies (film)

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Theatrical release poster
Directed byThomas Balmès
Produced byAlain Chabat
CinematographyJérôme Alméras
Frazer Bradshaw
Steeven Petitteville
Edited byReynald Bertrand
Craig McKay
Music byBruno Coulais
Chez Wam
Distributed byStudioCanal
Release dates
  • 14 April 2010 (2010-04-14)
  • 6 December 2010 (2010-12-06) (United Kingdom)
Running time
79 minutes

Babies, also known as Baby(ies) and Bébé(s), is a 2010 French documentary film by Thomas Balmès that follows four newborns through their first year after birth. Two of the babies featured in the film are from rural areas: Ponijao from Opuwo, Namibia, and Bayarjargal (Bayar) from Bayanchandmani, Mongolia, and two are from urban areas: Mari from Tokyo, Japan, and Hattie from San Francisco, U.S.[1] The film was released in the United States by Focus Features[2] on 14 April 2010.[3]


The documentary opens showing how Ponijao comes into the world in a modest hut after her mother rubs some red pigment all over her pregnancy-swollen belly. Hattie, on the other hand, arrives in a Western birthing center surrounded by medical equipment and technicians. Another scene shows Bayar being born and tightly swaddled in a hospital, before heading off with his parents and a sibling on a motorcycle to the rural area where the family lives. Other highlights include Mari's tantrum when she is frustrated with a toy, Hattie getting bored during an organized play session, Bayar taking a bath while a goat comes to drink from the same water, and Ponijao fighting with a sibling when they are playing on the ground.

The documentary shows the contrasts of the four cultures without using any form of narration, leaving it to the viewers to interpret the film.


Babies received generally positive reviews. 69% of ninety-one reviews on the site Rotten Tomatoes favored the film. The site's consensus is that "Babies is a joyous celebration of humankind that's loaded with adorable images, but it lacks insight and depth."[4] The film received a score of sixty-three on Metacritic. Owen Gleiberman, a reviewer for Entertainment Weekly, called Babies a crowd-pleaser and gave it a "B".[5] Katey Rich of Cinema Blend called the film "brilliantly simple".[6]

Box office[edit]

The film had its widest US release in 543 theaters, grossing $7,320,323 at the box office. It grossed $2,898,983 at the foreign box office; a worldwide gross of $10,219,306.[7]



  1. ^ Focus Features, "Babies Film Synopsis" Archived 10 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine, retrieved 29 May 2010.
  2. ^ John Hopewell and Elsa Keslassy, "StudioCanal has a banner Cannes", "Variety", 17 May 2009. Retrieved 29 May 2010.
  3. ^ Internet Movie Database, "Release dates for Bébé(s)", retrieved 29 May 2010.
  4. ^ "Babies (2010)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 29 May 2010.
  5. ^ Owen Gleiberman, "Movie Review: Babies", Entertainment Weekly, 6 May 2010. Retrieved 29 May 2010.
  6. ^ Katey Rich, "Babies – Review", Cinema Blend, 3 May 2010. Retrieved 29 May 2010.
  7. ^ "Babies". Box Office Mojo. Archived from the original on 14 December 2009. Retrieved 6 January 2022.

External links[edit]