Newest Reviews
Morfalous, Les
Everything Went Fine
Lux AEterna
Rum Runners
Fairy and the Devil, The
Mad God
Outside the Law
I Remember Mama
Superman Unbound
Lawrence of Belgravia
House Across the Lake, The
Wonder Park
Hornsby e Rodriguez
Operation Mincemeat
5 Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes
Peau Douce, La
Double Indemnity
Na Cha and the Seven Devils
Deep Murder
Superman vs. the Elite
Adam Project, The
Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century
Horse, La
Train Robbers, The
Let Sleeping Cops Lie
Funeral, The
Burning Sea, The
Godzilla Singular Point
Ace of Aces
Innocents, The
Beast and the Magic Sword, The
Last Hard Men, The
Found Footage Phenomenon, The
Night Trap
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
  It's Alive Baby Boo!
Year: 2008
Director: Josef Rusnak
Stars: Bijou Phillips, James Murray, Skye Bennett, Raphaël Coleman, Sigal Diamant, Jack Ellis, Laura Giosh, Ty Glaser, Arkie Reece
Genre: HorrorBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Hollywood’s ongoing quest to remake every single horror movie from the 1970s continues with this actually intelligent and modestly effective update of the Larry Cohen killer baby classic. Cohen himself is one of three authors credited with the new screenplay that swaps the original’s middle-aged couple for literate, snappy college student Lenore Harker (Bijou Phillips) who is expecting a child with her caring, committed boyfriend Frank Davies (James Murray, from ITV’s dino-drama Primeval). Things turn sinister for the happy couple when Lenore goes into labour and awakens to find hospital staff splattered all around the delivery room. While police frantically try to unravel the mystery, Lenore and Frank take refuge at the family cabin along with his crippled kid brother Chris. But gradually a series of freak deaths alerts Lenore that there is something not quite right about baby Daniel…

Obviously not the film to show expectant mothers, the all-new It’s Alive plays up the bond between monster baby and conflicted mama, torn between maternal feelings and growing horror. It draws a bit from David Cronenberg’s The Brood (1979) in that Lenore takes an active hand in concealing her baby’s murderous rampage and occasionally the child seems to be directing its rage against those who come between them.

Where the 1973 film features a tour-de-force from John Ryan as the tortured father, this revolves around a similarly strong central role for Bijou Phillips who is excellent. Although James Murray looks befuddled for the most part, he strikes a nicely judged note of compassion mixed with nausea near the climax. Kid bro Chris proves an unnecessary addition and Lenore’s college friends seem included solely to provide monster bait. Further eccentricities abound with a handful of British cast members seemingly dubbed with American accents and prominent billing given to child actress Skye Bennett even though she has only one scene.

Josef Rusnak, director of the interesting and underrated The Thirteenth Floor (1999) films interiors with a certain clinical precision that unsettles and intelligently, does not go overboard with all sorts of CG monster antics. As with the original Rick Baker creation, the monster baby is confined to the shadows, an unsettling, screeching, snarling menace. Gore fans may relish the handful of splattery deaths but these carry a certain silliness the admirably straight-faced tone can’t quite dispel. Unfortunately, the film is nowhere as subversive as Cohen’s original and seems strangely keyed to uphold both entrenched conservative and liberal points of view. Lenore is coloured bad because she neglects her college studies and friends to raise her child, yet still suffers horrifically for briefly considering an abortion. The earlier It’s Alive movies had a lot going on under the surface. This merely maintains that motherhood wrecks your life. Still, as horror remakes go it’s certainly no bastard offspring and boasts quite a pedigree: this is a new production from the legendary Amicus Films and co-producer Mark Damon was the lead in “The Wurdulak” episode of Mario Bava’s Black Sabbath (1963).

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam


This review has been viewed 2460 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Paul Smith


Last Updated: