Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Horror > Supernatural > Remake > TV Mini-Series > Rosemary's Baby (2014 TV Mini-Series remake/Lionsgate Blu-ray)

Rosemary's Baby (2014 TV Mini-Series remake/Lionsgate Blu-ray)

Picture: B Sound: B Extras: C Episodes: C

It goes without saying that Roman Polanksi's 1968 adaptation of the Ira Levin novel Rosemary's Baby (issued in a loaded Blu-ray edition by Criterion we recommend) is an undisputed classic not only a technical level but an emotional one. Upon first hearing about this remake mini-series, I immediately asked why? And after watching it I have to ask myself the same question again. Had that original film not existed, then this would be hailed something more of an accomplishment instead of simply mediocre fare.

Starring Zoe Saldana (who has become one of my favorite actresses as of late for her role as Gamora in Guardians of the Galaxy) as the titular character of Rosemary, it is her alone that keeps you watching. Her husband played by Patrick J. Adams is less than stunning - I feel like they should have gotten someone higher on the totem pole to play Rosemary's husband when they went as far to get an actress of Saldana's caliber. Though aside from the entrancing beauty of Zoe Saldana in most of the film, the rest of it is darkly lit and kind of boring. The only other acting highlight being Jason Isaacs - to whom is always on hand to be a great villain. Changing the location from New York to Paris, the producers here have strung out the story to make it as long as possible to fill two two hour timeslots when it should have only taken up one.

After suffering a miscarriage, Rosemary (Zoe Saldana) and Guy (Patrick J. Adams) Woodhouse leave New York City for Paris, hoping to make a fresh start. A series of serendipitous events lead them to befriend affluent couple Margaux (Carole Bouquet, a Luis Bunuel favorite known best for playing Melina in the 1981 James Bond classic For Your Eyes Only) and Roman Castevet (Jason Isaacs), who invite them to live in their prestigious apartment building. While Guy appreciates Roman's taking him under his wing, Rosemary is overwhelmed by the Castevets' interest in their lives. She finds evidence of the previous couple that lived in their apartment, and after going to Commissioner Fontaine (Olivier Rabourdin) with her suspicions, learns that the woman, Nena (Victoire Bélézy) committed suicide. Following a lead, Rosemary finds Nena's priest, who claims that the apartment building has a dark past, and one of its tennants is a Satanist billionaire named Steven Marcato who eats women's hearts. The priest hangs himself soon after, which prompts Fontaine to investigate.

When Guy's career flourishes, he suggests to Rosemary that they try to get pregnant again. On the night they plan to conceive, Rosemary drinks Margaux's herbal brew and passes out. In a dream-like state Rosemary sees herself having sex with a strange man, while being watched by Guy, Margaux, Roman, and the Castevets' friends. Weeks later Rosemary learns she's pregnant, but her health deteriorates and she's neglected by Guy, who is reluctant to touch Rosemary and has been spending more time with Roman. Guy is angered when he learns Rosemary went visit another doctor, as encouraged by her friend Julie (Christina Cole). Guy visits Julie and secretly takes her crucifix necklace; not long afterward Julie dies in kitchen accident. Rosemary's pains suddenly disappear, and the rest of the pregnancy proceeds well... and I think you know where the story is going.

Presented in sharp 1080p high definition in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, the transfer on the disc is better than the original broadcast quality and even boasts a lossless DTS-HD 5.1 MA (Master Audio) track. The show is presented in two parts that are separated on the disc with an optional play all function.

Extras on the disc include Fear is Born: The Making of Rosemary's Baby Featurette, and Grand Guignol: Parisian Production Design Featurette.

All in all, the miniseries isn't terrible but just feels unnecessary. What the original Polanski film brought to the story was innovative filmmaking where here it feels kind of like you are watching an episode of Hannibal. The shock and raw nature of the original is missing and edited for TV, and really without Zoe Saldana this series would probably be a complete throwaway attempt at a reboot.

- James Harland Lockhart V



 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com