TV Recap: Rosemary’s Baby, Part 1

Rosemary's Baby

Plot: A young American couple, Guy (Suits star Patrick J. Adams) and Rosemary (Zoe Saldana) come to Paris months after loosing their first baby. Rosemary stops a purse snatcher and discovers the wallet of Margaux Castevet (Carole Bouquet), a wealthy Parisian woman who owns an apartment complex in Paris. Margaux is so thankful for Rosemary’s kindness that she immediately invites them to an intimate party of her closest friends. We then meet her husband Roman Castevet (Jason Isaacs) who becomes a mentor to Guy. An apartment fire soon forces Guy and Rosemary into the refuge of their new found French friends and magically all of their luck turns for the better.

Photo Credit: Nino Munoz/NBC
Photo Credit: Nino Munoz/NBC

NBC’s brand new mini series, Rosemary’s Baby, is a completely unnecessary remake.

Going into Sunday night’s premiere we knew everything that was going to happen. We knew the big reveal, we know the motives of all the characters, and unless things were radically altered, we knew how the whole thing is going to end.

So it begs the question — what’s the point of even watching this mini series?

Now this may seem like an unjust criticism, surely this version will offer a new, exciting take on a classic tale. But, how fresh and exciting can it be? The point of the whole story is Rosemary’s baby is the antichrist and it’s a cautionary tale of how getting everything you want in life (without working for it) has its cost. You can’t do much else with this unless you make a decided change to the story that deviates from the source material.

The end result that is a toothless and groan-worthy mini series. There’s no suspense, no real drama or tension. Yes, this is just the first half but man do you leave this series feeling completely underwhelmed and bored.

Photo Credit: Nino Munoz/NBC
Photo Credit: Nino Munoz/NBC

Part 1 of Rosemary’s Baby could’ve been told in about 45 minutes (with commercials) instead of two hours. There’s a lot of dead air in this half, a lot of useless repetition and practically no character development. Well that’s a lie, the one character trait we see from our leads is that they’re both ridiculously stupid. Rosemary is so suspect of her new Parisian friends but she literally will only listen to her own fears and not to anyone else. Any time a character warns her or tells her how the home she’s living in has been the scene to some pretty major atrocities, she laughs them off or thinks that person is crazy. Now this would make sense if the words given to her were unsolicited but she actually sought these people out to discover the truth. When she hears it, she shrugs it off with a case of the “whatevs.” Pretty ridiculous.

The acting here is hampered tremendously by the fact the characters are so under-developed. Patrick J. Adams, who gets constant praise for his work on Suits, is given nothing to work with. Replace him with any other actor or any dude off the street and the same performance could’ve been achieved. A true shame since the man has loads of talent.

Photo Credit: Nino Munoz/NBC
Photo Credit: Nino Munoz/NBC

Saldana, who despite producing the series, is woefully miscast. The actress has made a successful run at portraying extremely strong willed and strong minded characters…and she does it really well. But, the flip-flopping Rosemary, who vacillates between fighter and flighty damsel susceptible to flattery doesn’t suit Saldana. It seems she’s portraying the character the way it’s been written, but this just feels like the wrong actress to do it. From the trailers for Part 2, we see a lot of bat shit crazy Rosemary scenes, so one has to conclude Saldana will really shine there, but so far, not so good for the first lady of the new generation of Stark Trek. Again, a true shame, because also has the talent and presence to carry a series like this.

In this age of television where horror seems to finally be getting done right, Rosemary’s Baby, the timeless classic, is given a very yester-year Lifetime movie made-for-TV retelling. It lacks any sort of drama, tension and most importantly, horror. While Part 1 is more of the set-up and establishment for the Part 2 climax, the series gives you no reason to anticipate Thursday’s finale.

Bill Bodkin is the gray bearded owner, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Pop Break. Most importantly, he is lucky husband, and proud father to a beautiful daughter named Sophie. He can be seen regularly on the site reviewing The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and is the host of the site’s podcast, The BreakCast. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @BodkinWrites

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