Review: The Baby (1973)

The Baby (1973)
Director: Ted Post

Before Robin Williams tried like hell to make us cry in the movie Jack, and Brad Pitt killed us softly with an overload of cheesiness in the movie Benjamin Button, David Mooney did the man-child role as Baby in the 1973 cult classic The Baby. Before you get excited by the term 'cult classic' or begin wondering if a film like this can hold against true horror cult classics like The Evil Dead, you should know that this isn't really a cult classic, because it's a surprisingly good movie. Personally, I think this film is considered a cult classic based upon the absurd, yet surprisingly interesting plot, and the subsequent twist(ed) ending.

The story opens with Ann Gentry, a social worker who has recently taken on a new case after hearing of its strange nature. We also begin to learn that Ann has problems of her own that haunt her throughout the film. She first meets the family - A middle-aged mother of 3 with two older daughters and a son. Now here's where things get weird - the son is a grown man with the mind of an infant.... I'll let that sink in for a minute. If you are imagining a grown man wearing baby clothes, sleeping in a crib and playing with blocks, then you are dead on. I seriously can't possibly make this up.

This is one of those films that make you ask yourself, "how serious were the cast and crew with making this film?" Although it's not a comedy and the plot comes off as quite serious, I can't help but think they had to be laughing throughout filming this. It should be pointed out that the directing by Ted Post (of Clint Eastwood's Magnum Force and Hang 'Em High fame) isn't bad at all and even the acting is decently executed, most notably from the Wadsworth sisters played by Marianna Hill (who hardcore horror buffs will remember as the lead from the underrated and forgotten zombie classic Messiah of Evil) and the oddly cute Susanne Zenor.

I will say that although the plot may sound incredibly unrealistic, they do explain it in a way that does make some sense. And as odd as it is, I can't help but warrant it as one of the most original stories I've seen in a horror film in a while. Unfortunately for some horror fans, this isn't a slasher film and most of it is dialogue driven. But if you watch this with an open mind and don't take it too seriously, I will definitely say this is worth the watch. And if you're like me, the ending just might catch you off guard.

- Rey Harris

1 comment:

  1. Apparently, you have yet to have a NDEr.
    Follow me Upstairs, bro:
    + +