Right up to the point where the bun is cooked, “Resurrection” plays the psychological thriller genre rather simply. No, really, even the most horror-loving parents will be troubled by the fact that a newborn has been cooked inside a stove.
Andrew Semans, the film’s writer and director, describes the opening sequence as “if it doesn’t hit you in the pit of your stomach, we screwed up,” setting the stage for an unforgettable climax he simply refers to as “the C-section.”
Rebecca Hall plays Margaret in the movie Resurrection, a working single mom with a very structured life who is fiercely protective of her college-bound daughter. Resurrection is currently playing in theatres and is available on Apple TV and other on-demand platforms.
But one day, Margaret’s heart breaks as she encounters David (Tim Roth), an older guy from the horrific past she had tried to put behind her. This all occurs at a time in Margaret’s life when her mothering skills and capacity are particularly vulnerable.
You’re compelled to reflect on the past and consider your parenting skills in this situation. Semans, a first-time father himself who gave birth three weeks ago, asks himself, “Did I effectively prepare my child for this life?”
The stuff of nightmares, the burned infant dream?
When Margaret first encounters David, she is inside her house when she notices smoke rising from the oven. When she opens it, she discovers a burned, lifeless infant who suddenly cries out, awakening her from the dream and sending the viewers into a state of shock.
In addition to pointing at “the content of Margaret’s anxieties (and) her panic,” Semans sought to move the story in “perhaps a more spooky or surreal path,” he says. Metaphorically, it just made sense. The baby inside has been imprisoned for a lot longer than necessary.
He recalled disturbing his assistant director, who had young children at home, while filming the burnt infant scene with a “really lifelike fake baby.” Semans explains, “Now that I have a baby right in the next room, I might respond the same way he did.”
Therefore, I assure you that there won’t be any illustrations or statements of harm occurring to any infants in my next film.
The troubled mother of Rebecca Hall tells it how it is?
It only gets stranger, though. Finally disclosing her turbulent past, Margaret delivers an eight-minute monologue (during which time the camera never leaves Hall’s face): When she was the same age as her daughter, she first met David, and they instantly fell in love. However, he soon started being abusive and controlling.
The couple’s son, Ben, was born to Margaret during her pregnancy, but the child later vanished, and David told the grieving Margaret that he had eaten the child. This led Margaret to leave the house in a panic.
David has since returned to her life after 20 years, claiming that Ben is still in his womb and is still crying out for his mother. Semans’ “expected worries around parenthood” were what initially spurred the “Resurrection” script.
But at the same time, the director claims he had a buddy who was “in a really sick, horrible relationship with a very poisonous individual,” and he grew fascinated and scared by those abuse dynamics. “Themes of coercion and control, gaslighting, and trauma bonding all became major components of it,” the author said.
The mother of all delivery horrors occurs at the end of “Resurrection”?
A disastrous final encounter with David occurs in his hotel room as Margaret’s ordinarily smooth existence abruptly comes to an end. He claims Ben is in his stomach once more, which prompts Margaret to stab him in the belly.
She doesn’t stop there; after slicing him open, she removes his internal organs and discovers a baby boy within. In that instance, according to Semans, “all the accumulated energy comes forth and literally changes the reality of the film,” creating a cathartic, operatic explosion.
As “Resurrection” transitions from a thriller to a supernatural horror movie by the third act, he also appreciates how the scenario “tears it out of its own genre.” As if it weren’t mind-blowing enough, the film then cuts to Margaret cuddling the baby in bed.
Before the credits roll, the camera zooms in on Margaret’s face as her daughter enters to say goodbye as she leaves for school. Initially beaming with joy, her expression gradually changes to one of dread. The final frame of the film, according to Semans, “is the fear that everything might not be as it seems.”
It is a highly problematic conclusion because it resolves in a way that grants her completely everything she wants. It has the impression of being unreliable and untrustworthy. And if what we’re witnessing isn’t real, the true reality is probably much worse and more awful. He continues, “But I didn’t want to convey that. I desired for Margaret’s hopes to be realised.