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It's Alive! Five Memorable Birth Scenes

Its Alive Movie PosterIn honor of my son's seventh birthday last week - and my own ongoing failure to block the clusterfuck of his birth from my memory, as we hope to do all traumatic experiences - it seemed more than a little appropriate to mark the occasion by spotlighting five adequately memorable birth scenes from the world of film.

1. It's Alive
Let me start by being clear: I'm talking about the craptastic 1970s exploitation flick, and not the craptastic remake of a couple of years ago. (Ah, Bijou Phillips. What a colorful cinematic legacy you carry with you.) And let me continue by being doubly clear: if the photo above doesn't clue you in... it's about a killer baby. Seriously. The original includes one of the most wonderfully evocative birth scenes you'll ever see, in which a father-to-be is sitting in the waiting room (in true 1970s style) awaiting news of his forthcoming firstborn... only to see a nurse stagger through the doors gushing blood from her throat. He bursts, horrified, into the delivery room — just in time to see his whacked-out mutant baby crawling away, having quite literally shredded everyone in the room with the exception of his now-completely insane wife.

2. Alien Resurrection
And you thought I was only going to talk about human births. Oh, foolish reader. How little you know me. This is easily one of the most spectacularly fucked-up and distressing things I've ever seen on film — in which the Alien Queen, spawned in part from a cloned version of Sigourney Weaver's Ripley (writing that makes it sound convoluted, but within the context of the film it makes sense), has developed something akin to a human reproductive system... and whose bulging abdomen suddenly bursts open to reveal not a dark, slick, phallic Alien of classic styling but something else. Some kind of distressingly unholy hybrid between Alien savagery and human form. A giant weird evil fucked-up alien baby thing that looks at its Alien Queen mother... and then with one massive, ferocious swipe of its taloned claw tears off the Alien Mom's lower jaw and leaves her to die, writhing, as it turns its attentions to a fascinated/horrified Ripley who has been watching all of this unfold. And recognizes her as its "real" mother.

God, there are shivers going down my spine just thinking about this scene. "You are a beautiful, beautiful butterfly..."

Alien Resurrection - Beautiful Butterfly

Alien Resurrection | MySpace Video

3. Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls
Regardless of how you feel about the man himself, it's hard to deny that there are few moments in cinematic history that more perfectly capture the strange majesty and savage beauty of nature and the circle of life that that magical moment when the fake rhino gives birth to a naked Jim Carrey. The first time I saw this, I laughed so hard I thought I was going to lose consciousness.

4. Knocked Up
Well, okay... this one is obvious. And while it doesn't reflect my own experiences in the birth theater, it certainly reflects what - let's face it - most guys think of when they think of childbirth. The crowning scene, in particular, when the dude with the fucked-up facial hair wanders in to the delivery room to see what's going on and...

There are some things you just can't un-see. That's the lesson to be learned here.

5. Rosemary's Baby
Yeah, I had to reach back a while to find this one, but let's be clear: few things make for a more memorable birth experience than having it happen in an upscale Manhattan apartment filled with elderly Satan worshippers who are crowding around you and rooting you on while you're doing the pushing-out-a-baby-thing - even though you're kinda hallucinating and confused and possibly losing your mind the entire time - and then a kid pops out and they walk off with him and start saying "He has his father's eyes!" (I should mention: you're Mia Farrow in this scenario. Hope you're cool with that.) and then they hand him back to you and you're more than a little horrified and ready to be taken aback and repulsed by the child they give you only to recognize him as your own and so you hold him and embrace him and love him even if he is, y'know, the AntiChrist. 

Such is the wonder of new life.

. . . . .
TwoBusy has been tired for seven years.

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You forgot Xtro. How could you forget Xtro?!?! Yeah. I still remember that. Saw that one on a first date. She didn't talk to me again for 20 years. Still sorry, Julie.


Can not wait for "Breaking Dawn" to be made into a movie....the birth scene (if done according to the book) is so f*cked up beyond imagination.


Oh man, I was 7 when It's Alive came out. The commercial terrified me. The bassinet slowly turning while the announcer says "There's only one thing wrong with the Davis baby... IT'S ALIVE!"

Freaked me out so much I've still never watched it.


You forgot a scene in "Slither" where that woman is bulging at the seams with lots of the leech-creatures, and another character idiotically asks her, "Are you okay?" and the lady yells, "It HURTS, bitch!" right before she explodes and the leeches fly. That's kind of a birth scene, right?

I saw that scene when I was massively pregnant with my third child, and it MESSED ME UP. Yuck.


I love ALL of these comments. And yes, Karen, I'm kicking myself for forgetting about Slither -- EXCELLENT call. That scene was profoundly messed up, and you clearly caught it at the best of all possible times.


Remember a few years back when everyone wanted to make an Exorcist prequel. Good times. Anyway, we rented one and it was right after my stillbirth and I have almost completely blocked this memory, but I only made it about ten minutes into the movie because a woman had a demon baby and it scarred me for life. Or maybe it was the other thing that scarred me for life. Who knows?

Also, have you seen Rosemary's Baby, dude? Because I think you need to rewatch the end. She has to break into their little black mass/knitting circle to see the baby at all, since they told her it was stillborn, and then she screams in horror "What did you do to its eyes!!" She does finally hold it though. Which is a nice moment, what with the upside down cross and the knitters.


@Jessi Ah, dammit. Did I screw that up? To be honest, it's been about 10 years since I've seen RB, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised if I've transposed some of the details. Sorry: my bad.

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