The 1968 movie “Rosemary’s Baby” is one of Roman Polanski’s most chilling and acclaimed productions. The film describes the manipulation of a young woman by a high-society occult coven for ritualistic purposes. The movie’s unsettling quality does not rely on blood and gore but on its realistic premise, which forces the viewers to ponder on the likelihood of the existence of elite secret societies. Even more unsettling are the eerie real-life events that surrounded the movie involving ritualistic killings and MK Ultra. We will look at the symbolic meaning of “Rosemary’s Baby” and the stranger-than-fiction events that followed its release.
Although articles on the Vigilant Citizen usually pertain to new releases, a look at the past is often necessary to better understand the present. The state of today’s Illuminati pop culture is not a spontaneous trend that sprung out of nowhere. Rather, it is the result of years of occult influence on the entertainment industry and the gradual conditioning of the masses to certain messages and symbols. Although pop culture has always been tainted by the elite’s agenda to shape and mold young minds, it is during the 60s and the 70s that MK-Ultra stooges and dark secret societies became visible parts of the mix. The need to quell the anti-war and anti-establishment movements of the 60’s forced the elite to infiltrate and disrupt the culture. A series of destabilizing events occurred to shock idealistic minds and heroes became enemies. The “Peace and Love” of the 60s became Charles Manson and LSD in the 70s.
Roman Polanski’s Rosemary’s Baby and its story about the manipulation of a young woman by an elite witch coven to carry and give birth to the Anti-Christ captured the mindset of this era and became symbolic of the irreversible shift that happened in the late 60s. However, it is the real-life events surrounding the movie that truly defined this era: Less than a year after the release of Rosemary’s Baby, Roman Polanski’s pregnant wife was ritualistically murdered by members of the Charles Manson family. This horrific event brought a brutal end to the “good vibrations” of the 60s and is viewed by many historians as a pivotal moment in American history. We will look at the symbolic meaning of Rosemary’s Baby and analyze the strange events surrounding it, which involve occult secret societies, mind control, and ritualistic murders.
Roman’s Polanski’s 1968 movie is a faithful adaption of Ira Levin’s best-selling novel that appeared only a year before. Although it contains no blood or gore, Rosemary’s Baby is considered to be one of the scariest movies of all time. Why? The creepy nature of the film is not in its special effects, but in its realistic premise. The story takes place in a real apartment building (the Dakota) that has a real reputation of attracting eccentric elements of New York’s high society. The evil coven is not composed of stereotypical, pointy-nose witches but of friendly neighbors, prestigious doctors and distinguished individuals. They are elegant, rational and intelligent and are connected to important people. The realism of the movie forces the viewers to ponder on the existence of such groups, to a point that some feared that the movie, after its release would cause an all-out witch hunt. Rosemary’s manipulation is also extremely realistic, causing the viewers to think: “It could happen to me”.
The movie starts with a pan-and-glide shot of the New York skyline, showing rooftops of buildings, finally settling on the prestigious Dakota Building (renamed “The Bramford” in the movie).
The Dakota, and other buildings of the Upper West Side are known to be home of New York’s aristocracy (the “old money”). The Dakota has also attracted celebrities such as actors, singers, and writers. It is the “place to be” for New York’s elite.
In the movie, the Bramford is rumored to have been the site of numerous strange events involving black magic and ritual killings. Adrian Marcato, a rich man practicing witchcraft was almost killed in the lobby of the building. Ten years later, John Lennon, who lived in the Dakota, was murdered in front of this same building. During the introduction of the movie, the Bramford is just one of New York city’s many rooftops, concealing within its austere walls occult rituals the average person would never suspect.
The Young Couple
Rosemary and Guy Woodhouse (played by Mia Farrow and John Cassavetes) are a young couple who are looking to rent an apartment at the Bramford. Guy is a struggling actor who is not able to obtain recognition or important roles and has to resort to appearing in degrading TV commercials to generate some income. Rosemary is a frail and shy country girl who comes from a strict Catholic background. The name Rosemary has historically been associated with the Virgin Mary, who is said to have spread her cloak over a white-blossomed rosemary bush when she was resting, turning it blue. In the movie, the kind and trusting Rosemary will become a sort of “Black Virgin Mary”, bearing within her womb the child of Satan.
Once settled in their apartment, the Woodhouses meet their neighbors the Castevets, a friendly but nosy elderly couple who invite them for dinner. During this important evening, Roman Castevet compliments Guy on his acting, claiming he has an “interesting inner-quality” and “that is should take him a long way” … provided he gets those initial breaks (we later learn that those breaks come easier when one is part of their cult). Roman claims his father was a theatrical director and that he worked with all of biggest stars of the time (his father is actually Adrian Marcato, the witch who almost got killed in the building’s lobby).
In the kitchen, Minnie asks Rosemary several questions concerning the number of children in her family. She is obviously very interested in the “child-bearing” qualities of Rosemary.
In the living room, Roman is privately discussing with Guy.
Guy learns about Roman’s witch coven and occult rituals. He is also told that his career will succeed if he were to join them. The price of entry is however steep: He must allow his wife to be drugged and impregnated by Satan during an occult ritual.
Under Their Control
Although he did not like the elderly couple at first, Guy joins the coven and becomes good friends with Roman. Rosemary, who has no idea of these dealings, becomes weary of the couple and their strange behavior. During a pop-in visit, Minnie gives Rosemary a pendant containing tannis root (a fictitious plant), claiming it to be a good luck charm.
The same night, Guy obtains the leading role of a play because the original actor suddenly became blind. This strange event convinces Guy of the coven’s power, quelling all his doubts regarding its ability to help his acting career. Rosemary soon notices a drastic change in Guy’s attitude: Her husband is “suddenly very hot”, landing big roles here and there. He is also becoming “self-centered,” “vain,” “pre-occupied,” and “self-absorbed”. Funny how this describes the changes seen in celebrities who “sell their soul” for fame.
One night, Guy brings flowers to Rosemary and abruptly proposes, “Let’s have a baby, all right?”. He circles the best days on the calendar to start having sex – October 4th or 5th, 1965. (The coven had determined that these were the prime days for copulation to obtain a numerologically-correct birth). While the couple has a romantic dinner as a prelude to lovemaking, Minnie knocks at their door to drop off a dessert she made. Rosemary finds that the chocolate mousse has a “chalky taste” but Guy insists that she eats it. Her mousse contained drugs and Rosemary becomes dizzy.
During her trance-like state, Rosemary has incoherent hallucinations involving a JFK look-a-like (the only Catholic US President, who died six years before) images of the Sistine Chapel and the Pope (who is wearing Rosemary’s spherical pendant, symbol of occult control). She is then seen naked on her bed, surrounded by her husband, the Castevets and the entire witch coven, who are chanting ritualistic hymns while an occult ritual is practiced on her.
In her dream-like state, Guy begins making love to her, but his appearance changes into a grotesque beast-like figure resembling the Devil, with yellowish eyes and clawed, scaly hands. He strokes the length of her body with his hairy claw. While being ‘raped’ Rosemary realizes:
“This is no dream, this is really happening!”
There have been persistent rumors claiming that Anton LaVey, the founder of the Church of Satan, played the uncredited role of Satan during the impregnation scene, and also served as a technical advisor for the film. There is no proof of LaVey’s involvement in the movie but he was nonetheless linked to the movie’s aura in another way: Susan Atkins, the member of the Manson family who later murdered Polanski’s pregnant wife Sharon Tate, was an ex-follower of Anton LaVey.
Soon after, Rosemary learns that she is pregnant.