a retort to ‘The Devil’s Baby’ on Prime Video that lampoons the medical side of pregnancy

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The best way to deal with this version millennial of ‘The Devil’s Seed’ is to be clear that there are few things comparable to ‘The Devil’s Seed’, Roman Polanski’s masterly claustrophobic nightmare about the doubts and paranoid fears that assail any pregnant woman. Assuming that peak is unattainable, ‘Dark Truth’ – which you can see on Prime Video and for rent at filminit is venomous and disturbing enough to make it worth approaching its proposal.

‘Dark truth’ (terrible Spanish title for the much more elegant original ‘False Positive’) starts with a young couple who want to have a child, but where she cannot get pregnant. They go to a fertility clinic, where their manager, Dr. Hindle he applies a treatment of his invention thanks to which they finally achieve a pregnancy with triplets. But the mother-to-be (wonderful Ilana Glazer, previously only seen in comedic roles) begins to pick up signs that something is wrong with her future children.

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The film then plunges into a paranoid vision of pregnancy in which everything is fears and conspiracies about the future baby. Only here we remain at the mother’s side at all times: is there some kind of cult or secret society behind all this? Some supernatural component as her dreams seem to suggest? What does the suspiciously cordial behavior of the husband and the doctor, former student and teacher, mean?

The answer ends up arriving and it is not as brilliant as one would like, but it draws a nice bridge with the medical conspiracy thrillers of the seventies and eighties in the style of ‘Coma’. ‘Dark truth’ is certainly not up to ‘The Devil’s Seed’, but its great performances and continuous plot twists give it some very suggestive uncomfortable vibes.

More of stamp A24

After gaining considerable prestige as a distributor, spreading movies like ‘Spring Breakers’, ‘Ex Machina’ or ‘The Room’, A24 became a producer, financing movies like ‘Hereditary’, ‘Midsommar’, ‘The Lighthouse’, ‘ Uncut Gems’ or ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’, and becoming one of the great brands of the new trends in fantastic cinema and, especially, horror. ‘Dark Truth’ does not have the sophistication of proposals such as ‘The Witch’, one of the films that put A24 on the map, but it shares the dark atmosphere and generational criticism that characterizes other films of the label.

It’s from A24 where it comes from the most interesting part of the film, beyond its value as a suspense thriller with flashes of body horror: his criticism of everything that surrounds a pregnancy, and that overwhelms women even before the moment of conception. Social pressures, what “should” and “should not” be done is examined by Glazer’s own script, which embroiders sequences as disturbing as they are funny with meetings with the other pregnant women.

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This poisonous perspective of the role of the pregnant woman also extends to her work, in an advertising agency where from the first moment the kind comments of her colleagues overflow with hypocrisy. And of course, to the entire clinical apparatus that surrounds pregnancies in general and assisted reproduction in particular: the asepsis of the clinics, the robotic friendliness of the employees, the disturbing efforts to make very uncomfortable situations bearable…

In this last section, Pierce Brosnan especially shines as dr. Hindle, a disturbing gynecologist whose performance wins in subsequent revisions of a film full of folds and meanings between the lines. Brimming with wicked humor and with a very unaccommodating perspective of motherhood and the industrial apparatus that exists around it‘Dark truth’ is a macabre gem with ups and downs, but very suggestive.

The best way to deal with this version millennial of ‘The Devil’s Seed’ is to be clear that there are…

The best way to deal with this version millennial of ‘The Devil’s Seed’ is to be clear that there are…

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