Rosemary's Baby

Rosemary's Baby ★★★½

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.


Ah, yes, nothing like a cozy film about nihilism for the fall season.

I unfortunately feel like I didn't like "Rosemary's Baby" as much as I had anticipated or as much as everyone else did, but that's not to say it's a bad film in any sense of the meaning. I'm a lot more of a fan of the idea rather than the execution: a film about sinister intentions hiding being a veneer of normalcy and paranoia over our simple surroundings. This works because of the juxtaposition of many banal conversations and encounters with events that create the idea that something is clearly wrong. All the moments that help show the darker side of the Bramford apartment building work well, especially when they get really haunting or surreal such as the boat scene, but the more "normal" scenes just didn't keep me interested. This seems to be a running problem in the Roman Polanski films: any sort of normal, everyday dialogue is painfully average and the attempt at realism doesn't interest me at all. Mia Farrow gives a mixed-leaning-towards-good-especially-towards-the-end performance and it's hard not to sympathize with her as the Rosemary character is just someone thrust into an extremely unpleasant situation out of her control. She does all she can do to escape from the Castevets, Dr. Sapirstein, and her controlling husband guy (in yet another great performance by John Cassavetes), but in the end, it doesn't even matter. The film ends in absolute chaos as Rosemary unwillingly gives birth to 「Baby Face」, err, I mean, the anti-Christ and all the Satanist witch residents of the apartment celebrate in a truly great scene. A beautifully bittersweet nihilistic ending when Rosemary chooses to accept her fate after all she had been through and accept her responsibility as a mother, even with the consequences of letting Adrian live.

It can get a bit too slow and banal, it's obviously very problematic and disturbing, but there is a lot here to justify why this film is considered a classic horror film nearly half a century later even if there was a lot here that didn't quite work. Maybe it'll grow on me with time.

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