Review: Rosemary’s Baby (1968)

Mia Farrow stars as the titular Rosemary in this haunting tail of witchcraft and betrayal.

Every October for the past three years or so I have done my own horror movie marathon where I watch one horror movie a day, ending on Halloween.  Usually I organize the movies from the least scary on the 1st to most scary on Halloween night. This year however I wanted to start off with a bang so I went with Roman Polanski’s classic, Rosemary’s Baby.

I did not know a lot about this movie going in. I knew that it involved Satan worshipers and being a religious person, that is enough to chill me to the core. I also knew that it was considered one of the scariest movies ever by many critics. What I did not expect was the “slow burn” pace of this movie.  After seeing it, I’m not even sure I would consider it to be a horror per se so much as a thriller in the traditional senses.  There are no sudden appearances of bad guys from around the corner. There’s no promiscuous teen couple being chased by a chainsaw wielding maniac.

There is however, an overwhelming sense of doom and despair throughout the entire film. This might have been because I knew that the story revolves around Satanism, but I like to think that it was the direction of Polanski. He uses extremely long shots without any cuts to draw us into the story.  He knows how to place shadows and darkness in just the right places to make us wonder what could be hiding just out of sight.

Mia Farrow also deserves much of the praise for the success of this movie.  The story revolves around her journey of discovering that (spoilers) she has carried and give birth to the spawn of Satan.  At the end of the movie, her reaction and facial expressions are all we need to know that whatever is in that cradle, is evil incarnate.

This movie gives me the creeps. It was a perfect movie to start off my 2015 Horror Movie Marathon. Stay tuned all October for more reviews of scary movies.

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