As a way of directing attention to often-overlooked craftspeople who work in mainstream movies, we are offering several readings of this sequence from the 2007 film Babel. These analyses (posted below) examine the way in which the film’s screenwriter, cinematographer, production designers, sound designers, performers, and editors contribute to the scene’s overall effect. Such a project raises a number of questions. Is the film’s director Alejandro Gonzáles Iñárritu best viewed as a separate presence whose role is decisive in the creation of aesthetic meaning, as the orchestrator of many diverse inputs, or as just another member of the group? If he is best understood as a presence apart from the rest of the group, what is the nature of his input? Does he consciously or unconsciously impose a distinctive style or structure on the finished product? If he is to be viewed as an orchestrator, how is his role best conceptualized? And if we accept the idea that the scene is the product of some form of group activity, is it best seen as the result of the efforts of a gathering of collaborators, each of whom makes a defined contribution to the finished product or is it more properly appreciated as a collective effort in which all contributions melt together into a seamless whole? Further, how might we best theorize the aesthetic effect created by a group rather than an individual artist? If one agrees that Babel is superior to many other Hollywood movies, what is the source of its aesthetic power if it is not to be found in the unique sensibility of a single creative mind? To put the problem another way, if Babel is to be approached as a pastiche of diverse voices or as a melding of several sensibilities, wherein lies its unity? If the filmis not unified, how best can one conceptualize the source of its aesthetic power? Finally, how, if at all, can the actual work done by people in the real world be acknowledged within a poststructuralist conceptual framework in which the idea of authorship itself is reduced to a happenstantial confluence of cultural flotsam? We welcome comments on these or other related issues.