Sunday, September 24, 2006

The Same Cannot Be Said for Tannis Root

The article I’m currently writing has required me to find a date for a certain issue of Time magazine that purportedly features Bob Dylan on the cover. All I know is that the issue came out during the Vietnam War, so I went to Time’s online archive and began browsing old issues from the 1960s. I still haven’t found the issue, but the process is entertaining. One cover in particular jumped out at me.

For those who have seen the film “Rosemary’s Baby,” the magazine should look familiar. Mia Farrow’s character glances through this particular issue in a scene at her doctor’s office. Of course, it ties in nicely will the film’s themes of religion, but I’m most amused by the fact that the answer to the question on the cover would seem to be “no.” By virtue of being a film in which the Devil is a physical presence and an active participant in the plot, I imagine one would have to conclude that “Rosemary’s Baby” is also a film that acknowledges the existence of God. In the same way that “The Exorcist,” to me, is one of the most artfully pro-religious movies I’ve ever seen, any film that concerns the Devil so literally would have to simultaneously concern his opposite. The Devil can’t exist without God, at least in the Catholic conceptions of these two entities. Oddly, the reverse isn’t true, as lots of films feature God but don’t necessarily imply the existence of the Devil.

Funny how that works.

In any case, I’m mostly amused that a magazine featured so prominently in the film was not fabricated just for it. Good work there, Roman Polanski.
[ link: The Time magazine online archive ]

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