Sunday, 22 April 2012

Conceived By The Devil

As you might guess from the poster, ‘I Don’t Want To Be Born’ is ridiculous.

Joan Collins is a stripper in a crappy nightclub (in a parallel universe, Joan was a stripper in a crappy nightclub). For some reason, her dancing companion is a dwarf called Samson who, of course, fancies her. When she rejects his advances he curses her with the immortal words “You will have a baby...a monster! An evil monster conceived inside your womb! As big as I am small and possessed by the devil himself!"

It’s never explained quite what Samson’s credentials are to make such a statement, but it works, and soon Joan is giving birth to a 12lb baby who proceeds to scratch, bite, punch and head butt any adult stupid enough to look into its cot, before moving on to murder. Luckily there’s a nun in the family who is able to exorcise the unholy tot, but she’s too late to save the rest of the cast, who have been drowned, hanged, decapitated and stabbed with scissors en route.

The notion that a new born baby could beat and murder the adults who care for it is an interesting one: I mean, okay, even if it was possessed by the Devil and able to draw upon unnatural strength, what about the co-ordination and manual dexterity needed to, say, make a noose, sling it over a branch and hang an adult with it? I know babies, and they’re just far too floppy for all that. Even Damien didn’t start causing real problems until he was a toddler. So, yes, it’s ridiculous. Actually, it’s fucking ridiculous. I love it


  1. I must admit that when it comes to British horror/ thriller cinema of the 1970's, my critical faculties are non-existent. I could happily sit through a film about paint drying, as long as it features gratuitous shots of the life, locations and fashions of the decade.
    That said, I've always struggled with this film and I'm not really sure why.
    Any film that includes Collins, Bates, Munro & a psychotic dwarf-spawned baby in a suburban setting should be visual ecstasy for me. There's just no way this can fail to cause repeated trips to the fridge, hoping that another cold beer will stop me foaming at the mouth..
    But no; the last couple of times I've sat down with this film were riddled with disappointment & feelings of confusion.
    This angers me, and I will be watching I Don’t Want To Be Born again tonight, and I'm determined to be thoroughly entertained.
    If not, I'm breaking the habit of a lifetime and consulting medical advice !

  2. I believe this was also known as Sharon's Baby, a cringeworthy cash in to Rosemary's Baby as alluded to in the poster. Thing is, knowing this alt title now has confused me, as I seem to recall Joan's character was called Lucy?!

  3. Look out for a split-second shot of somebody being pushed into a lake from behind, purportedly by the baby despite them having a large and hairy adult man's hand.