We reported a while back that U.S. audiences will see a drastically shorter cut of Babylon A.D. than Europeans this August — but apparently it's worse than we'd feared. The dystopian action movie, directed by Matthieu Kassovitz (Gothika) and starring Vin Diesel, will run roughly 160 minutes in most of Europe. But the U.S. and British cut will only be a quick-and-dirty 90 minutes, or slightly more than half as long. What's worse, the 90-minute version just got the British equivalent of a PG-13 rating in England, which means all of Kassovitz's trademark violence is gone.
To be fair, we already didn't have high hopes for this film, based on reports that Diesel threw a ton of hissy fits on the set, and the filming went severely over budget and off schedule. And the synopsis sounds very Ultraviolet-esque: In the near future, society has collapsed, as it tends to in near-future movies. And Dieslel is a mercenary, who's hired to bring a young woman (Melanie Thierry) and a nun (Michelle Yeoh!) from Russia to China. But it turns out the girl carries a virus that allows you to shape your own DNA, or attain a new level of consciousness, or something. It's really not clear. And a whole bunch of different groups are fighting over her, including religious nuts. Diesel has to keep her safe through demilitarized zones and fight clubs and Blade Runner-esque nightmares.
It sounds like something you'll want to watch on DVD — in the director's cut. [Twitch Film]