Cinema Aesthetic – Rosemary’s Baby

February 7, 2008

cinema aesthetic matra brathwaite No Comments

**This is our weekly series on stylealchemy, titled Cinema Aesthetic, which explores the importance of wardrobe and set design within film (mostly) but may include music video and television**

To me, Rosemary’s Baby is the one classically defined horror movie without any specific horror on the screen. There is no malfunctioning cell phone coming to get you or an escaped mental patient hiding in your backseat waiting to slit your throat.

You’re not going to jump out of your seat screaming because you’ve been surprised. Everything that makes Rosemary’s Baby deliciously creepy and suspenseful is in the way the film is shot. Director Roman Polanski had the impressive job of translating this story onto the screen.

This look through the peephole is a classic shot.
Rosemary’s Baby

A newlywed couple, Rosemary and Guy Woodhouse (Mia Farrow and Guy Cassavetes) move into a New York apartment and encounter an interesting group of neighbors including the elderly and eccentric Roman and Minnie Castevets (Sidney Blackmer and the fantastic Ruth Gordon) which takes them on a series of interestingly strange events culminating in the arrival of Rosemary’s little bundle of joy.

This is a film steeped in paranoia and suspense, is it all real? Or is it all part of Rosemary’s imagination?

One of the best things about this movie is the setting. With New York City as a backdrop there is a lot of to play with and gives a certain stamp of approval to the strange characters that live there in sharp contrast to Rosemary’s MidWestern roots. However, the Dakota building stands out as it’s gothic exterior lends to the creepy mystique of the film. This building and the apartments within become another important character in the film.

Rosemary’s Baby

The costumes in this movie are a perfect reflection of the end of the 1960’s. There’s beautiful babydoll dresses worn by Rosemary in bright patterns and pastel colors and the older women in the film are decked out in pearls and garish make-up. Also, Rosemary’s infamous pixie haircut. This is a moment in time perfectly captured and preserved on film.

Rosemary’s Baby

Rosemary’s Baby

Rosemary’s Baby

Rosemary’s Baby

Rosemary’s Baby

Here is the original trailer for the movie.

♥ the alchemist

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