Rosemary’s Baby

Happy Mother's Day! To celebrate, this year we're examining a classic of the "motherhood gone horribly wrong" genre: Roman Polanski's "Rosemary's Baby"

If you have yet to see this film, we highly recommend you watch it BEFORE you listen to us talk about it. It's that good.

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Rosemary’s Baby (1968)

Episode #256, 2 Guys and a Chainsaw

Todd: Hello and welcome to another episode of Two Guys and a Chainsaw. I’m Todd

Craig: And I’m Craig.

Todd: Well, Craig, it is mother’s day. Yeah. Big shout out to all the moms out there. Our moms, we love all you guys. And of course it being a holiday. It’s just another excuse for us to pick a movie that we might not normally pick. This week’s movie, uh, is a very famous film. Normally we don’t pick very famous films, but, uh, just because, uh, what are we going to say about it?

It hasn’t been said a hundred times before, however, in the same vein, it’s so much fun to talk about some of these, right? Because there’s so much to say this week in honor, of mother’s day, we chose 1968. Rosemary’s baby, an icon of film in general, not just horror film. Okay. So God, I hadn’t I’ve I’ve seen Rosemary’s baby.

I don’t know. Two, maybe three times. I don’t think I’d seen it in at least the last 15, maybe 20 years. Oh, It, it it’s great. I know what a great movie holds up so well, and, uh, it was just a joy to watch. And I was actually shocked when I saw, as soon as I pulled it up, there was over two hours long.

Apparently the original cut was over four hours long. And Roman Polanski, the director, Roman Polanski. Oh yeah. Roman Polanski, the director, like didn’t know what to cut. So he just gave it all to his editor and said you make those decisions. And what we ended up with as far as I’m concerned as a downright masterpiece, I don’t know, man, it’s going to be hard to find flaws in this film.

It’s just, uh, it’s just great. So I remembered loving it when I first saw it, I read the book. Me too. I was surprised when ever, I mean, I read the book after I read the movie. Same. I don’t know about you, but I was just surprised, like. Coming off of Stephen King, Ray Bradbury, these very literary type authors.

I found the book to be very straightforward and simple, simple in its language. The book read almost like a screenplay. It wasn’t full of flowery language and highly descriptive things. It was just like dialogue and the bare bones of what you need to know yet. So densely plotted and so intense, just like the movie IRA Levin is the author.

And he wrote several iconic novels that were also made into movies. But he said, when this film came out, this has to be the most faithful adaptation of a book ever for a movie because it’s, it’s exactly the same. Like there’s very little difference between the two. And I guess the producer William castle said, well, that might just be, because this was Roman Polanski’s first crack at adapted material.

And so he didn’t know that he could take some liberties with, and he decided not to. But why, why would you that the source material was solid and great. It read like a movie as far as I was concerned. The movie is great and so fun. Anyway, I’m going to stop talking. You say something about it?

Craig: No, the, the faithfulness to the novel is, uh, impressive.

I mean, even. Down to minor details that you wouldn’t even notice watching the film that he pulled from the book. It really is very impressive. Like you, I read the book after I had seen the movie and it didn’t feel like a waste of time. It was still a very enjoyable read. I enjoyed it very much, but it, it, I mean, the movie is so faithful that, uh, you know, there weren’t any surprises, but that was fine.

And it, again, like, I almost feel like we’re gonna struggle with what to say because the movie just really is that good. And, and it’s, it’s different from what we typically cover. I mean, it’s certainly horror, but there is next to no. Violence now there is implied sexual violence, but it’s done in a very dreamlike Hetty way.

It’s not graphic at all. And beyond that, there’s really no other violence. There’s no blood, there’s no Gore that I want to call it more of a psychological thriller, but that’s, that’s selling it kind of short because there certainly are poorer elements. There’s witchcraft and covens and the devil and Satan ism.

And certainly all of these things that fall right into the realm of horror, but it also feels like a human drama centered around this woman. Rosemary played by Mia Farrow. Now. Mia Farrow at the time was married to Frank Sinatra. She was a burgeoning actress. She had done stuff on stage and she had done stuff on television, like Peyton place and, and a few other things.

So she was known. But she was kind of more known for being Mrs. Frank Sinatra than for her own thing. And when this movie, when they started making this movie, she was not the first choice for the role. Um, several people had been considered, uh, ahead of her. One of them being Sharon Tate, Roman Polanski’s, then wife.

She was finally selected, but she was going through marital problems with her husband. Frank Sinatra told her that in order to work on their marriage, she needed to quit this movie. And she was ready to, she was prepared to, but then I think it was the director. Somebody showed her the dailies and said, Mia, you will win an Oscar if you do this.

And she decided, you know what, this is my shot. I’m going to do it. And she did. She stuck with it. And days later, Sinatra served her with divorce papers on the set and they were divorced while the movie certainly, I mean, it sky rocketed her, uh, to fame, but she didn’t get the kind of critical, well, I don’t even know if that’s true.

She didn’t get the, uh, she didn’t get an Oscar nomination. She was nominated for several other awards, but she didn’t get an Oscar nomination. And it’s, it’s kind of gone down as one of the biggest Oscar snubs, frankly. I’m not really sure how to feel about that because her performance is really interesting.

Like, I don’t know that I would watch this movie and think, wow, this woman is an amazing actress, but she does play. The vulnerability of it very, very well. And I was very much on her side and rooting for her scared for her. She just, she just did a really good job of really making me feel for the character.

You know, I wanted to be there and I wanted to be her friend and I, I

Todd: wanted to tell

Craig: her to get out

Todd: right away. Well, I feel the same way, you know, like, I don’t know if it’s just because they’re both red heads or something, but like Carrie, she had just feel like, I felt similarly about sissy Spacek, you know, also at the same at the time, very. Lesser known actress, but just had a vulnerability about her.

That just brought me to her almost immediately. I don’t know. They kind of have a similar look don’t they as well. Maybe that’s why, but she is much more than Carrie. She’s more in control. She, she can take control. Let me put it that

Craig: way. She can. Well, I mean, Carrie could too, she did. She killed her most people

Todd: when she was finally driven to it, you know, like, ah, yeah, you’re right.

Craig: You’re right. But yeah, I, I, and the other thing, I think that the reason that we feel for her so much is that we come to realize very soon that everything is working against this poor vulnerable woman who just has no idea what she’s getting into and

Todd: for no good reason. Like, you know, like she had nothing to do.

She didn’t bring this on herself. No,

Craig: no. And, and, and the thing that troubles me and I’m sorry, like I can’t help, but frankly, first of all, if you’re listening to this, if you’re into horror, you’ve probably seen this movie. If you haven’t turned this off, go watch it first. Don’t listen to us. Talk about it first, go watch it.

It’s worth it. And then come back. The thing that troubled me the most is that she’s this young woman in a marriage, you know, and they are kind of starting their lives. It appears that they’ve kind of waited for her husband to establish himself in his career. He’s an actor, he’s a working actor. They establish that early on, but he hasn’t met the kind of success that he has hoped for.

He’s not a star. I can’t tell you how many times in the beginning of the movie, when Rosemary and she’s introducing herself and her husband to their neighbor, they move into this new building. And she’s, she’s constantly talking about. You know, she has to explain who they are. What does your husband do?

He’s an actor. No, Kenny what’s his name, guy would house. He was in Luther and nobody loves an albatross. And he does a lot of television and radio. She, I watched TV all day long. I’ll bet. I’ve seen him. He aspires to more. And the thing that really gets under my skin about this movie is that your partner, your husband, your wife, your, the person that you choose to devote your life to that should be the person.

Ideally, I know that it’s not always the case, but ideally that should be the person that you can rely on in any circumstance that you can trust. And her husband betrays her and puts her through hell. For his own ambition and it’s disgusting. And it’s so, you know, obviously I had seen the movie before and I had read the book.

So watching it again this time and knowing what was going on, I was just sickened by the manipulation that was going on there, because like you said, she doesn’t, she doesn’t deserve it. You know, she’s, she’s a wonderful, supportive, loving wife and, and he just completely beyond anything that I can imagine in real life betrayed.

It’s disgusting.

Todd: And you know, I feel like this is a movie that’s even more rewarding upon repeat viewings because. Once, you know, what’s going on, you can really appreciate the tells and the things early on in the film. I don’t know if it was my age, cause I know I first watched us probably when I was a teenager, but I remember when I first watched this wondering.

If the husband was in on it, like thinking, Oh, this is an intriguing thing. Like maybe he is maybe he isn’t, but like this time watching it around again, maybe it’s my knowledge, but it’s so obvious. It’s so obvious that he is basically the instigator more or less of all of this, that, like you said, it pissed me off.

Even more. Yeah. He’s such a slime ball because he is really good at just gaslighting her. Yeah, exactly. That’s what it is, right. Gaslighting her he’s so good at gaslighting her, which I was just thinking about that too. I’m like this movie is like, Just the kinds of conversations and the social place we are now where we’re confronting these sorts of issues.

And we’re talking about it. It’s a movie for our time. It is movie that has aged. Great. You know, because I don’t want to say it’s ahead of its time, but I mean, I’m just feel like you can watch it today and feel like it was made today because it’s kind of treading on that same stuff. It’s very much a sort of a feminist, I guess you could say movie we’re, we’re very much abroad onto Rosemary’s side.

In the beginning. We can see very clearly that she’s being manipulated and worked against and gaslighted. And then it is even as the film goes on, and this is a part that I had forgotten about, I forgot just how much she ends up and how early on she ends up realizing that something’s not right and taking some action.

She takes initial steps, but like. Almost like starting from halfway through the movie to the end, she gets more and more agency and more and more determined to fix this, to extricate herself from the situation. Her problem is she doesn’t understand 100%. The situation she’s in, that’s the only problem.

And as that gets more and more revealed, she gets more and more desperate and actually takes action. She’s not, um, I mean, she is a victim, but like she’s not very much not like a helpless. Victim in this movie, she’s simply helpless because there’s no way anybody is going to be able to overcome what she’s dealing with, but she certainly tries very hard

Craig: is a victim.

Um, and Mia Farrow in subsequent years, I think in the nineties and in interviews and talking about this was kind of critical of the character in calling her a victim. I don’t think that that’s fair because you know, she is, first of all, victims should not carry a stigma. You know, that’s, you’re a victim off and it’s not your fault.

You know, something happens to you, something, somebody does something to you. That’s not your fault. But what I like about Rosemary is that when she does. Come to feel and believe that there is something going wrong. She stands up for herself forcefully. Yes. Eventually she seeks help. And I know that we’re going totally out of sequence.

We can come back and kind of wrap up the story or whatever, but she seeks help and she goes about it all the right ways,

Todd: but it’s bigger than her.

Craig: It’s bigger than her. And in those, because of the situation that she’s in, when she seeks help, she seems crazy. She’s not, she is spot on. She knows what’s going on.

She knows what’s happening to her. But when she tries to explain it to other people and I, you know, I have to put myself in their shoes. If this woman was saying these things to me, I would think this woman is crazy and she needs help. Not from the things that she thinks she needs help from, but because.

She’s crazy. I would think that too, but she’s not, that happens, you know, it does. It’s so frustrating to watch it because you want people to help her. She reaches out to the people who should help her, but they just think she’s crazy. And it’s so frustrating.

Todd: Well, and this being our mother’s day episode, I mean, this bears discussing.

Part of the reason why we chose this movie anyway, but like pregnant woman, women in particular, right? We all, there’s almost a stereotype and you know, it comes from a truth that this is a very hormonal time. Like it is a time of great change, psych physiological, psychological change, all very much of it is just biologically motivated.

And so having, you know, gone through this with my own wife and our son and, you know, through a pregnancy and all that, like, you’re always constantly aware that like, look, am I in a bad mood today? Or am I saying crazy things? Where am I doing weird things? Just because like, this is what I would expect.

This is a, is hormonal, this is biological. It’s gonna mess with your brain. It’s going to mess with your mind. And so nobody is really wrong in questioning when she, you know, comes with these re outlandish kinds of things to them. That’s what, like you said, makes the situation so tragic. Like how can you get help when you.

No. At the end of the day, pregnant women are going to be susceptible to hormonal imbalance and medical physiological, and therefore psychological kind of changes and mood swings. And all this stuff is just real. It’s real. It’s not about being a woman. It’s about carrying a baby and all that, that carries and so perfect stew for this kind of, um, plot to, to work out.

And, uh, it’s, it’s, it’s very much behind the manipulation that she experiences with these people. It’s why it’s so successful. And it’s why she’s almost doomed from the start of being able to get anybody else on her side. It’s tragic, right? It really is. And we know it’s tragic, we’re watching it. And so that’s part of the frustration, right?

And that’s what makes us horror. Like she’s in this thing that she just cannot get out of and we can all see it and she can even see it, but where’s the way out. There’s no way out. And even she doesn’t know where it’s going and we don’t know where it’s going. You know, there’s still kind of. More or less, uh, I don’t know.

I’m I wouldn’t say it’s a shock ending, but it’s definitely, especially for the time, I didn’t realize this until I did research for this film 1968. This was the first of the sort of like string of these say tannic cult type movies that were so popular at this time to the point where I releveled himself said in 2002, and I’m quoting him here.

He says, I feel guilty that Rosemary’s baby led to the Exorcist. The omen a whole generation has been exposed, has more belief in Satan. I don’t believe in Satan. And I feel that the strong fundamentalism we have would not have been as strong. If there hadn’t been so many of these books, of course, I didn’t send back any royalties,

but is the Genesis of this whole thing. And so, you know, maybe us, in retrospect, looking back on this kind of like saw where it was coming from a mile away, or at least kinda got on board with the, we knew where, who the enemy was and where this was going, but maybe at the time in 1968, uh, this was a bit of a Whoa.

Wow. That’s crazy.

Craig: Oh gosh. I think that’s totally true. I think that it. Obviously, it’s been a very long time since I had seen this movie for the first time. And even when I had seen it for the first time, I kind of knew new going in generally what it was about. But I think that if you took somebody who had lived in a bubble their whole life and had no idea what this movie was about, it’s shocking.

It’s surprising. I don’t think that you would necessarily know, I guess what was going on. Yeah. You would feel that there was something weird going on, but. I don’t think that you would ultimately come to the actual conclusion on your own. And I think that the ending would be surprising and that you would also question Rosemary sanity more now watching it.

Now I know that she’s right. I know that what she suspects is going on is going on, but if I didn’t already know that I would wonder is she just paranoid? Is it just hormones? Is she losing it? I don’t know. Yeah. I

Todd: feel Craig I’m so comfortable talking about this movie as though people have seen it. I’d still want to go on, I don’t want to jump in and talk about the plot just yet, because what you just said is so real, especially the end of this film.

So, okay. Everybody, let me catch up on the plot. Uh, Rosemary and her husband moved into an apartment. Her husband betrays, her, gets her impregnated by Satan. The neighbors are part of this big satanic coven, and they are bringing the antichrist into the world. And this ends up being the baby antichrist and they hold it from back from her as much as possible until the end when she has this great moment, which we’ll probably talk about.

And she figures, you know, she obviously she’s kind of figured out something’s not right, but she’s not sure what it is. She thinks that because the apartment complex that they’ve lived in and what their previous landlord who knows so much about this apartment complex, literally tells them in the beginning, this place is kind of known for weird shady shit,

Craig: then transistors for two proper Victorian ladies.

Thank you. Eight several young children, including a niece. Oh, lovely. Adrian McCarter practice witchcraft. He made quite a splash in the nineties by announcing the lead capture up living devil. Apparently people believed him. So they attacked him, nearly killed him in the

Todd: lobby of the brain devil worship, cannibalism babies found dead in the basement.

So at worst, she’s kind of thinking like they want my baby so they can do weird shit to it. Yeah. She’s not thinking, Oh, they’re trying to birth the antichrist. Right, right. So that would be the twist that we get at the end. Right. That in retrospect, we probably from looking back on it now and monitor through modernize, we’re probably figuring that out from the beginning.

So anyway, at the end, when she kind of discovers all this and she breaks into the apartment next door, then they’re all standing around milling around very naturally. And there’s the baby. And so she’s actually sees the baby that they told her was dead. There is still like 10 more minutes of film. Um,

Craig: or still, I was thinking the same thing, 10 or

Todd: 15.

Yeah, there is. When you think the movie should be over, like in a Twilight zone episode, this would have been over like, Oh my God, the baby was the anti-Christ. Aha. All hail Satan. We’re done. No, there’s her coming to terms with it. There’s Demme talking with her about it. And then sort of the twist ending is they kind of convince her, look, I mean, this shit’s already happened and you’re still the baby’s mother.

So would you consider at least continuing to be as mother and take care of it? And

Craig: you don’t have to join us if you don’t want to just be its mother.

Todd: Yeah. Then she’s kind of like by the end of the movie, of course, in the book, it’s crystal clear because there’s more, but like in the movie, that’s the edge.

It ends on pan out from her rocking the baby in the cradle and you realize she’s gonna more or less succumb to this fate of hers after fighting it and all that. Now, now like the ultimate tragedy is that she’s going to willingly more or less be the mother to this child. Right. Is this the devil?

Craig: Right?

And that’s the only thing like, seriously, the movie is so faithful, but there are just some things that you can’t do on film that you can do in a movie or in a book. Excuse me. Like in these moments, in the very end, when she realizes. First of all God, the husband is such a Dick, like from the beginning, really?

She, she has the baby and under duress because she knows what’s going on and they’re like sedating her and holding her down on the bed. And she has the baby when she wakes up, the husband’s like, Oh, it’s fine. And then she goes back to sleep and she wakes up again and the doctor and the husband come in and they’re like, Oh, there were complications.

The baby died. Well, then she starts hearing crying from the neighboring apartment and it’s already been established that there’s like a, a secret entryway through a closet. And so, like you said, she gets in there. She sees the baby in the movie when she sees it at first she’s horrified, the producer of the movie wanted us to see this demon baby.

The director said, no, It’s better left to the imagination, which I think was totally the right decision. But you see the look of horror on her face when she first sees it. But then like you said, the leader of the coven has that whole conversation with her. You can still be the baby’s mother. You are its mother.

So just be its mother. And the very last scene, aside from a pan out from the building is her standing, looking at the baby, seemingly lovingly. Like she realizes that it is her baby and she loves it now in the book, I’m not criticizing the movie cause I don’t know how they could have done this, but we’re privy to Rosemary’s thoughts.

And she thinks about taking the baby and committing suicide and killing the baby. Like by jumping out of the window, like this other girl who they had tried to the coven had apparently tried to groom earlier. Had seemingly done. Maybe she thinks about it, but ultimately she decides, yes, the baby is half the devil, but it’s also half me.

And maybe if I can nurture the baby, I can fix it or whatever. And that’s ultimately what she decides to do. She does ultimately, however aside to alert the Pope,

cause she, she was brought up Catholic. She’s not a practicing Catholic in her adulthood. She was brought up Catholic and she decides that she is going to inform the church of what has happened and that she is going to accept whatever decision they make about what should be done. And that’s where the book.

And do you remember that, um, anthology that we watched for one of the segments was clearly a followup to this movie, even though they didn’t say it. Do you remember that?

Todd: Uh, was that XX? I don’t remember

Craig: which one it was, but the woman, uh, you know, it was a single mother and her teenage son and he was like going through weird changes and it was, it was clearly a follow-up to this.

I remember that I really enjoyed that segment. I don’t remember the movie, but I really enjoyed that segment. Yeah. Anyway, I just thought of that as I was watching

Todd: apparently, and I didn’t know this either until now this movie had a follow up. It was a TV movie called I shit. You not look what’s happened to Rosemary’s baby.

Yeah. And it started

Craig: Patty, Duke, Patty, Duke, as the. As Rosemary, I don’t know anything. I’ve never seen it. I don’t even know what happens in it. Do you know? I

Todd: mean, I, I, I went to Wikipedia and you can read a synopsis. There are like three parts to it. It did not get glowing reviews sort of lack. I mean, it’s supposedly according to Daniel Goodwin and scream magazine, It catches up with the characters from Polanski’s classic in a gosh and bumbling chase movie slash disco horror hybrid, a hodgepodge of awkwardly lumped together, chase and dance sequences, festooned with ham acting, garish, fashion, glitter balls, and satanic rituals, which actually doesn’t sound too bad to me, I think.

Craig: Yeah. I mean, as a curiosity of be interesting, but like I also read that those, you know, the Exorcist and the omen, which followed this, both of those went on to be franchises with multiple sequels and prequels and remakes and reboots and TV series and blah, blah, blah. And this one doesn’t have that. Like it does have the lane made for TV.

SQL that wasn’t received well, and there was also a remake. Oh, I can’t remember who the actress, it was a black actress who played Rosemary in the remake. And Alan tells me, I made him watch it though. I don’t remember it at all. Um, but this doesn’t have it. And I think that that’s because it works so well as a standalone film, I almost kind of don’t want to know what happens next.

You know, like I, I just like the ambiguity of. The ending and yeah, it just thinking about this character and again, Mia Farrow’s portrayal of her. She’s, she’s very feminine. She’s kind of way fi she has a very high pitched voice. She’s almost childlike in some ways. And it’s just something about her as a person and her performance that just makes her so violent.

Durable.

Todd: Yeah. She’s like a little bird

in

Craig: here. Right? Protect her. Ironically, this is a movie. Uh, you said feminist, I can see that. I think that that’s, you know, accurate, but it’s also a movie about abuse and manipulation and rape and sexual assault. And ironically Mia Farrow’s son Ronan would go on and, you know, just what, not even five years ago to kind of blow the lid off of this toxic masculinity in Hollywood and really initiate the me too movement.

Um, and the time’s up movement. It’s a very interesting kind of circle.

Todd: Yeah. And speaking of abuse, I’m curious because something that I also completely forgot about from the first couple times I watched this movie were these flashback sequences to her days as like a Catholic school student.

Craig: Yeah, I had completely forgotten about these flashback sequences too.

And frankly, even watching it this time, I wasn’t entirely sure what to make of them. Cause there, there were those Catholic school girl moments, but then there was also a bunch of water imagery and like her on a boat.

Todd: Yeah. And some, some incident that happened with the windows that I guess she was getting blamed for something like, I, I didn’t quite get that and I wasn’t quite sure where all, I mean, I almost felt like I was watching the director’s cut of the movie.

And that those were originally cut out. I mean, I know we didn’t, but they were so out of my memory and to me almost unnecessary, maybe they’re more necessary than I realize, but were they to establish that she herself is a religious person yet has had bad experiences or a guilt or something associated with that, which therefore made her a good candidate for this, or at least provided some character conflict with what was going on or was just sort of foreshadowing the religiosity of what was happening to her.

I just, I. Didn’t get that. Although they were really well filmed. I don’t know. It was, maybe it was a little artsy. I mean, the movie is kind of art. Maybe you just kind of treaded more into those artsy waters at those moments where I was a little unsure as to what the point of those

Craig: scenes were. I still am too, but it was disorienting and, and some of it happened during the scene.

So, so th so they move into this building with a sorted past, and they immediately meet their neighbors. The cast of vets. Yup. Minnie and Roman, Roman. There’s lots of really good actors in this movie. Um, but I really like Minnie and Roman, they’re this eccentric old

Todd: culture. Well, but they could be anybody’s neighbor.

I mean,

Craig: typical. Right. And they’re very New York. They’re very, like, I know like I’ve, uh, I’ve never even been in New York, but stereotypically New York, like she’s kind of brassy and nosy and he is. Very friendly. There they’re both hikers.

Todd: Yeah. Yeah. Old, you know, old money kind of clearly like a, has got a long past, he talks about his travels and all that stuff, you know, just like kind of classic

Craig: name, any place in the world and I’ve been there.

Um, okay. And as it turns out, he is the son of this notorious witch or warlock, I guess though they never use that word. They just say witches, but his father had been this, you know, notorious witch or whatever who had been killed. He had lived in that building and had been killed at that building in the book.

Uh, Rosemary figures it out. She figures it out in the movie too. But in the book, um, the wife, many figures out that, uh, Rosemary has figured out her husband’s parentage and she says, that’s why we have to move around and travel so much because people always eventually figure it out. And it’s been, you know, the bane of his life being connected to his father.

Well, really not. He’s continuing his father’s legacy, but I liked them both, but I especially liked Ruth Gordon. I just love her in this movie. What is your hobby do? He’s an actor. I know what I said at a Roman yesterday. He’s so good looking what movies was he in? No movies. He was in two plays called Luther and nobody loves it now, but trust and a lot of television and radio, this is very.

I got a two inch thick pillow and just take, sit and defroster right this minute. When you guy come over, I have stop all of this tonight. What he has said. No, we couldn’t. No, no, really. That’s very kind of, you listen to be a real help to us. Hey, first name will be alone since she’s new nosy and like that’s mildly irritating to Rosemary, but at the same time, she’s also very supportive and helpful.

Todd: And she’s good at her manipulation. Yeah. Yeah. So offhanded about it. And that’s why this movie works really well when you watch it a second time, because so much of this blows right by you.

Craig: Right. And because they don’t seem sinister. I mean, there are little clues, like, yeah, they’re very nosy and they’re very much in their business.

And as soon as they find out she’s pregnant, they immediately say, Oh my gosh, you don’t want to keep going to your doctor. We know the best doctor in the city. I’m going to set it up for you right now. Like in hindsight, super shady. And it does turn out that the doctor is part of their coven. And so it all works out.

I also really like that initially, like when Rosemary tells the husband, these, these neighbors want us to come over to dinner and he’s like, Oh my God, if we go over there, we’re going to be connected to them. And they’re going to be coming over all the time. And, uh, and she’s like, well, we don’t have to, if you don’t want it to.

And he’s like, no, we can be neighborly, but he is immediately enamored with them. Like they have dinner. The dinner is not even good. It’s like. Not well-prepared or whatever, but while, and these are just little things that you would only notice on the second viewing. I think while Rosemary is helping many with the dishes, Roman, the old guy and guy, the husband are sitting having cigars in the living room and you can’t see them.

You can’t hear what they’re talking about, but all of a sudden guy is very interested in maintaining that relationship. Well, my stories are pretty damn interesting though. Never even heard of Forbes Robinson before I’m going to go over there again tomorrow night and here’s some more, yeah. He asked me here, do this damn thing for him.

I felt well, I’m going to do something with Jen and Dick jealous because that definitely it wasn’t definite let’s see the next week. You don’t have to come along. If you don’t want to, you can stay here. Yeah, I think I will stay here. All of a sudden he’s spending all this time with them. And when you watch the movie having seen it before and having known what’s going on, he is constantly leaving to go plot with them.

Yes. Like he’ll claim he’s going out for ice cream or he’s going for a walk or he’s going to get a newspaper. No, he’s not. He is constantly going over there to plot and to let them know what’s going on. Like if Rosemary’s friends are getting too Snoopy, or if Rosemary’s thinking about switching doctors or whatever it is, anytime she brings it up.

Something like that or something like that happens. Or she’s visited by a friend who expresses concern. He’s constantly leaving to go over there and he’s in on it with them the whole time. Oh, he’s such a Dick. And he’s played by John Cassavetes who I don’t know from anything else. Jack Nicholson had been recommended for the role, but the director Roman Polanski said, he’s too sinister looking.

It’s it’s too obvious. John Cassavetes. I don’t think that he’s particularly sinister looking, but watching the movie now, just look at him and I just want to punch him in the face. Like you are such an asshole. I know. I know. So th the neighbors they’re great. I think they’re cool. One of the other things that I wanted to talk about, it was the stylized scene, Rosemary and guy.

Want to start a family. They want to not just have a baby, but they plan to have several babies in succession, but they want to have a baby in their planning for it. And guys like I have, you know, I did the math and I know exactly when you conceive and like he’s circled something on the, uh, date on the calendar.

So they have a special romantic dinner that night during dinner, they’re interrupted by a knock at the door and it’s mini who brings them dessert. I wouldn’t have noticed this watching the movie, but it’s, it’s two goblets of chocolate mousse and it’s very clear in the novel and they do it in the movie, but I never would have noticed that the two desserts have different toppings.

Well that’s because one of them is drugged and guy needs to know which one and he gives Rosemary the one that’s drug. She can taste that there’s something off about it. And again, You know, watching the moving, knowing what’s going on. He’s so insistent that she eats it has an under taste and chalky under taste.

Good. That’s silly, honey. There is no under taste. There is. Come on the old bad slaved all day. Not eat it and like it it’s delicious. Hey, you can have mine. I don’t need it. There’s always something wrong. Oh, it’s going to

Todd: turn into a big thing.

You

Craig: really can’t stand. It just don’t eat it. It’s delicious. No one to test it all.

But then he goes to get a drink or something and she dumps most of it into her napkin. So she doesn’t actually consume most of it. So the next part of the plan is when she is supposed to pass, she does get very dizzy and disoriented. And, and that’s when we start kind of seeing these flashback scenes and stuff, but he puts her in bed and he undresses her.

And then like, she’s going between dream. And reality. And obviously she doesn’t know the difference. It’s all just very dreamlike to her, but we see her surrounded by all these old naked people and her naked husband. And at one point her husband says she’s, her eyes are open, she’s awake. She can see. And Minnie says, no, no, no.

They just do that. Sometimes she won’t see anything. She won’t remember anything. This part actually confused me a little bit because it’s all so surreal. It looks for a moment. They tired of the bed she’s naked and they paint. On her in blood, but it looks for a moment like her husband crawls on top of her, but then it’s not her husband anymore.

It’s the devil

Todd: like hairy hands and fingernails stuff like that.

Craig: Uh, like goat eyes with the weird pupils and stuff

Todd: beyond since it’s almost hokey really. But

Craig: I actually don’t think so because you see so little, it’s just suggestions. It’s just like the eyes hovering above her, the cloven hands stroking her body.

And you only see it in glimpses now. Yeah. You could argue that like the hands clearly look like their costumes that’s fair, but it was really unsettling. I mean, rape scenes very much bother me. Period. I, I cut somebody’s head off disembowel. Somebody I’m down. Sexual violence makes me very, very, very uncomfortable, but here it was subtle enough that I knew what was going on, but it was like, she didn’t know what was going on.

Like she had her head turned and was talking while this. Thing was thrusting into her.

Todd: And then she basically yells out. It’s almost like she gets a sudden realization. She yells out point blank. This is not a dream. This is really happening to me. The most disturbing part of all, this was the next morning when she wakes up and she’s kind of disoriented and she sits up and she looks at her shoulders and her sides and she sees scratch marks down there.

And she’s like, what is this? And he, again, playing it off as like, Oh, I’m sorry, you know, you out of it. But I was so anxious to have a baby with you that I went ahead and did it. And it was

Craig: kind of fun in a necrophiles sort of way. That is so gross. Like, Oh my God, like I can kind of, and she even says something like, you could have waited until this morning.

It’s not like it had to happen in that instant. Yeah, I can, I can almost understand from her point of view, like when you’re that intimate with somebody and you give yourself over to somebody in that way, it’s almost as though, you know, like you have a right to my body because I’ve given you that right.

But don’t take advantage of it in such a disgusting way. Like he blows it off. Like it’s no big deal. Like, Oh yeah, I do. While you were unconscious, like, no, like, Oh, I just did it.

Todd: Necrophiles sort of way, you know, just as well as banging a dead body. Yeah. That’s how fun it was. So yeah. I mean, it’s gross and it’s weird.

And she, you know, you talk about her acting. She’s clearly unnerved by this, you know, she’s not a flat out screaming at him. What you raped me on was asleep, but she’s still like, Oh, well, I mean, Yeah, but really could have waited till the morning. Like, could I be a part of this too? Uh, you really feel for her in this moment and he’s such a douchebag, but again, when you watching it, maybe you catch this the first time around, but especially when you’re watching it the second time, the way he continually blows her off is just the way he’s gaslighting

Craig: her is.

Yes. That’s it

Todd: both expert and really upsetting.

Craig: That’s it. Exactly. And like putting myself in her shoes, I can imagine the conflicting feelings like. You shouldn’t have done that. That was bad. And at the same time, but you’re my husband. So like, I guess it’s okay. Like, uh, like it’s just so gross and he’s so blocked.

Say about it. Like that’s, what’s so disgusting. Uh, God, I mean, it’s, it’s nuanced. That’s what I like about it. It’s, you know, they’re in a relationship and she trusts him. She trusts him up until the end when she. Comes to understand and realize that he is part of it. And she’s not stupid. She’s manipulated for a very long time, but when one of her friends who the witches have incapacitated and ultimately killed, but he’s able to get a message you’re not from beyond the grave, but before he died, he sends her a book about witchcraft and about specifically.

That her building and the people who lived there. And that’s how she figures out who the neighbors are and whatnot. So she’s not dumb. She figures it out. And when she figures it out, she figures out that her husband is in on it and she knows why it’s because of his ambition. They can make him famous.

They’ve done it before and everything that they’ve done throughout the movie blinding, uh, another actor who won a part over her husband and then her husband ends up getting the part, putting her friend who was on to them in a coma. And then he ultimately dies. These are all things that she can read about in this book.

And she realizes that her husband is in on it. And at that point, what do you do? Do who do you turn to? She says that she has family. She says that she has sisters. Um, and I think she maybe mentioned a brother, but that they’re not close and it, and she has friends at one point, she gets so tired of many and Roman being.

So in their business that she just decides to throw a party. And she says, it’s just our young friends, nobody under 60 is invited and, and many tries very hard to get herself invited or, or to be some part of it. And Rosemary is very firm. No, it’s fine. Thank you. I can do this on my own. And when she does have that party, her friends are supportive of her and tell her to seek help because.

She looks terrible and she feels terrible. And her witch doctor has told her, don’t read any books on pregnancy. Don’t talk to your friends. Every pregnancy is different. Well, he’s done that because she is going through hell. And that was one of the only other things that I really wanted to spotlight was I thought that they did such a good job of showing her transformation early in her pregnancy.

She looks like. Death incarnate, skeletal skeletal, and like pale to the point that in some parts of the movie, I’m sure it was the makeup. She looked blue. So like just, and she looked so sick and she was sick and in pain. And that was the other thing that made me so mad. Her husband is watching her go through all of this.

And at the end, when she figures everything out, when everything is blown wide open, and she goes into that room where everybody is standing around, it’s like a bris or like a baptism or something like everybody’s standing around celebrating. She sees her husband. And at first he like hangs his head like, Oh no, she’s figured it out.

But then he comes around and he tries to justify it and he says, They promised me that you wouldn’t be hurt and you haven’t really been fuck you. She went through hell during that pregnancy. And then he, and then he’s like, what if it had just been a normal pregnancy and you had just lost the baby, like you would get over it like that.

This is just like that, right? Like, are you kidding me wrong with you? Yeah. Uh, I just, I wished that he would die. I hated him. So

Todd: much. Well, like I said, I was a teenager when I watched this movie. So sometimes things went over my head when they really shouldn’t have, but I really felt like the first time around, I didn’t hate him as much, obviously till the end, but you know, not, not all of this stuff there, there, it felt like at the time there was enough ambiguity that I wasn’t quite sure how much of it he was in on, or how much of it he understood.

And even at the end of the movie, you realize maybe he didn’t. Quite get everything, but you’re right. The evidence of his eyes and the fact that this is your mate and she trusts you and you love her. There’s no excuse. So, you know, we’re not going to be able to talk about this movie in its entirety to what it deserves, but there were just a couple of the things I wanted to mention.

And that was when the credits first started to come up. I was kind of shocked to see that William castle was the producer. William castle produced so much low budget schlock, but fun, like. House on haunted Hill. I love it. Even though it’s silly. Oh, one of the actors from house on haunted Hill, Elijah wood is the guy who leads them through the apartment in the very beginning.

And he’s been in a lot of William castle movies. He was even in black ULA. He was the, the mortician and Blackfella. So you’ve got these, these really great actors. You’ve got these guys who have come in, you know, from his other movies and he got the rights to the book. And so that’s how he could produce the movie, but paramount wouldn’t pay for it unless it was stipulated that he wouldn’t direct it because they didn’t want that.

So obviously it was a good choice getting Roman Polanski and Roman Polanski was apparently he is such a perfectionist that he would spend hours and days filming scenes that, you know, probably William castle and. His typical stable of directors wouldn’t give, but a few hours too. And it shows in the movie, the movie is just layers upon layers and it’s just thoughtful.

And it’s smart. A lot of the movie is filmed in like one take scenes that go on for a long time, which also indicates just the quality of the actors. I love the beginning and how it just sort of pans across this modern city and then into the central park, which, you know, kind of brings us into the woods a little bit.

And then down to this apartment complex, which is extreme in extreme contrast, it felt like a step back through time, modern city. Forest. And now very Gothic, old style apartment complex, and the design of the set, the design of the apartment complex and their hallways. It just had this very Gothic get decrepit kind of feel just somewhere in between modern and old, but way more in the old, the set design is so good.

The colors are so good. The cinematography, he was beautiful. Just the movie was just a joy, a feast for the eyes for being a talkie film for being just nothing but talking drama in rooms, the movie looked better beautiful and was always visually interesting and hats off to Roman Polanski for doing that.

That’s the, it’s his style. It’s the way he is. Uh, I can’t say enough great things about the technical

Craig: aspects. Right. And Roman, Polanski’s one of those people who is problematic. Um, you know, but ironically, right, we we’ve we’ve talks about this before, you know, we can recognize that people do bad things and we can condemn those things, but we can still appreciate their art.

And it’s, it’s difficult to try to reconcile that because I don’t in any way condone Roman Polanski’s I would say alleged bad behavior, but it’s really not. I mean, it’s pretty much confirmed. Yeah. He was convicted, right? Yeah. And I want to get too much into it. It, the point is he may not be. A good person, but he made some good movies.

Uh, and this is an excellent. Mo. I, I just think it’s excellent. Like honestly, when every week when we pick a movie, one of the very first things I do is look to see how long,

what I saw that this movie was over two hours. I was like, Oh my God. But it was a joy to watch. I just, I loved every minute of it. I was invested in every minute of it. Um, I thought the performances were great. Really? Mia Farrow really carries this movie. You know, there was a lot of responsibility on her shoulders.

She’s in every scene. Yeah. And it’s a lot of responsibility, but she did a great job. I just wanted to say real quick. I know you said earlier that Elijah wood was in this movie. I think human Elijah cook, right?

Todd: Oh yeah. Sorry.

Craig: What is a highlight?

Todd: Not even a twinkle in anyone’s eye when this movie came out

there was, I also remember this moment in this film, just this nice little touch when they decide they’re going to go when they’re going to do it right. When they’re just sitting in the empty apartment and they’re sitting down, I loved that and she just looks at him and she’s like, let’s make love and nieces.

Okay. And they just start undressing. It’s a long scene. It reminded me a little bit of a don’t look now in the honesty. Of what a marriage is and what a committed relationship is, it’s romantic, but it’s also kind of in a way it was very pedantic, like, like, you know, like the way they just kind of undress and next to each other in this dark room and he’s going to take it off his pants and she’s kind of taken off her stuff like that went on for a little while.

And I thought, Oh, that’s so cute. Like this sold me on this couple,

Craig: you know, me too. That’s the exact same thing I was thinking, like, it reminded me of what it’s like to be young and in love, like it’s, it’s, it’s great to be old and in love too. It really is. But things change. Like I remember the early days of my long-term committed relationship.

Where would just be the middle of the day and it’s like, let’s do it. Okay.

Todd: Just like, okay, well I’ll have to take my pants off, take the shirt. I need to go brush my teeth. I go to the bathroom or whatever like that. Right. It’s not like. Movies, try to make it be, you know, I just thought that was a nice bit of

Craig: honesty I did too. And I thought that it did a lot to establish their relationship, which I think made it then even more tragic that he would put Dre her in such a horrible,

Todd: yeah, he doesn’t come out looking the slightest bit sympathetic in this movie.

Does.

Craig: I can’t recommend this movie enough, if you haven’t seen it. I hope, I hope that’s not the case. I hope you have, because we’ve obviously tainted you. If you haven’t seen it, you know, you know, what’s going on, it’s still a great movie. You’re still going to enjoy it. It’s like a great book. Like when you finish a great book, you wish you could go back and read it again for the first time.

I wish I could go back and watch this movie again for the first time. Um, without knowing and without the expectations, it’s just so good. And it’s suspenseful. It’s scary in non-typical ways. It makes you as. The viewer questions so much. If you don’t already know what’s going on and, and, uh, Mia Farrow, again, I’m not gonna like go on and on about what a great actress she is.

In fact, there were parts of this movie where I thought her acting was not so great, but she’s so vulnerable and she’s so easy to get behind as the heroine of this movie. I love it. I love her performance. It’s dark. Things turn out badly, but, uh, it’s a fantastic movie. It’s a classic. I think it is an absolute classic.

Todd: It’s the first of a genre. Of course we had movies about devil worship before this, but you know, they, they didn’t really bring it into the modern. They didn’t bring it into the urban, like this movie really did. We’re not in the Backwoods. We’re not in, you know, rural America, we’re in the middle of the city.

And this is the third of three horror slash suspenseful, psych psychological thriller movies that Roman Polanski did that take place in basically the same setting. And I’d actually recommend the other two as well. I’ve seen them both repulsion, I think, and the tenant disturbing, but in different ways, but this movie’s a more tightly plotted kind of unfolding mystery than those movies are a little more art, art housey.

Yeah. I’m going to echo everything. You just said a great film, Charles. Grodin got his start here and then I were leaven. I was surprised he also wrote the Stepford wives. And death trap. Yup. Yup. Yeah, the material is great. The film is wonderful. The acting is good and it’s just a classic and even watching more than once you, I think you just get something new out of it every time and very apropos for our modern age.

So I’m really glad that we could take this opportunity for mother’s day to reach out to all of our Mazars out there and say, Hey, you think you got it bad? At least you don’t have it this bad. Hopefully.

Craig: Yeah. And, and before we sign off, I want to take a moment to wish happy mother’s day to all the mothers out there.

But specifically to my mom, I have one of the coolest moms anybody has ever had. She inspires me every day. Uh, and I just. I think that she’s amazing and I couldn’t love her more and she couldn’t be more supportive of me. And I also want to say happy mother’s day to all the other mothers. And I want to say happy mother’s day to the aunts and grandmothers and women who are pet mothers, um, and women who maybe thought that motherhood was in their future.

And it didn’t work out that way. We honor and appreciate every single one of you. And

Todd: now that you’ve said that it would be really horrible if I went back and did not also reach out to your mother, Greg, your mother is wonderful. She’s a great gal. Yep. I know. And I wish her a happy mother’s day as well.

All right. Well, thank you again for another episode of two guys in a chainsaw. If you enjoyed it, please share it with a friend. You could find us online, just search for two guys in a chainsaw podcast. Look us up on Facebook, or just go to our website or Twitter. Leave us a message there and let us know what you thought of Rosemary’s baby.

Let us know any film that you would like us to do in the future for a future holiday. Be it mother’s day, Kwanzaa, Christmas, whatever, uh, until next time I’m Todd and I’m Craig with Two Guys and a Chainsaw.


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