Babylon, a controversial movie directed by Franco Rosso originally produced in 1980 was never released because of its potential to generate racial conflict. This fascinating film, in more ways than one, follows the fictional character “Blue” a reggae DJ who's trying to make ends meet in the racially divided community of South London in the late ‘70s.
Based on real circumstances, Babylon explores the harsh day-to-day racism and xenophobia that black people in South London were forced to constantly confront in the workplace, dealing with police, on the streets, in bars and cafes, at video arcades, on the football fields and even in their own homes. Revealing the social injustice, marginalization, bigotry and the abuse of human rights, the film cuts to the core exposing how black immigrants were devalued and reduced to “jungle bunnies.”
A revolutionary must-watch film that’s genuine and pure tells the truth about the repulse cycle of violence instead of pointing fingers at any person or group. Babylon, deeply rooted in reggae music and soundsystem culture, mirrors the fact that 40 years later not much has changed.
The movie makes its debut in Calgary during the Riddim West Festival at the Plaza Theatre on Thursday, June 6, at 7:00 p.m. Tickets cost $10
- By Mariam Taiwo