Review Rating: 6.5 out of 10
Don’t-give-a-shit druggie Lou, after yet another night of wild partying, finds herself pregnant with something possibly out of this world!
Since watching this film I discovered that the director intended it to be looked at as a psychedelic horror flick, and while the dictionary defines “psychedelic” as both having to do with the drug LSD and the trippy kaleidoscopic visions it causes, I don’t recall ever seeing Lou pop LSD in the movie. Sure, she pops everything else she can get her hands on, like a kid in a candy store, but the movie doesn’t get real specific on what the pills being popped are. Which is, actually, I think kind of the point, one of the very few plot points the film actually has.
Like most other contracted-STD horror flicks out now, the very beginning is where Lou (Natasha Lyonne) apparently gets knocked up, and the whole experience is kind of a drugged-out blur trip. Annnd then we cut to Lou and her friend Sadie (Chloe Sevigny) in the nasty-ass trailer Lou sorta lives in, where Lou complains about the mess of her life and endures pregnancy-like symptoms, all while getting high and noshing and generally not changing a single thing about the way she lives. Lou remains this way pretty much through the entire movie, with her give-zero-fucks attitude and near constant abuse of drugs and alcohol, all through the visit to the veterinary friends office for advice, the few hours of “work” at some rundown motel with another druggie friend of hers, and of course the rest of the time spent getting high on one thing or another and complaining.
It’s really hard to keep a linear timeline of whatever the hells going on in this movie, but I gather Lou’s “pregnancy” only lasts about a week or so. We the audience learn that Lou’s dealer Gabriel (Mark Webber) is also Sadie’s boyfriend, and he and his partner Warren have been keeping all sorts of secrets from the both of them. Mostly this newfangled experimental drug that already destroyed the face of one of their many hooker girls, supposedly some kind of hormone supplement that was discontinued but that Gabriel and Warren decided to distribute anyway, and guess who they administered it to.
Little happens as we follow Lou from one drug score and gripe session to the next, until damn near the very end of the movie when suddenly Lou’s stomach and nightmare psychedelic visions go into overdrive. This strange woman, Lorna (Meg Tilly), that Lou met at the motel shows up at the cottage right as Lou’s about to give birth to whatever’s straining in there, but as the mess and the sheer strangeness of it all reaches a fever pitch, these military-like guys in fatigues with big guns show up and shit gets even weirder!
Barely qualifying as a Horror flick, Antibirth rather reminds me as more of a kind of Sci-Fi warning against promiscuity, the taking of virtually any drugs or drinking, and perhaps even a tiny message against the Pro-Lifers stance of all life being sacred and a woman pregnant of rape or incest being forced to carry the baby to birth. There are some fairly good slices of that misunderstood subgenre of Horror, the Body-Horror category, but the big reveal at the end kind of moved away from that in a big hurry. A good deal of the film does indeed sport psychedelic imagery and swirling visions, characterized as a kind of acidic fever dream borne of a woman’s own desire to not be involved in the incredibly messy and, let’s face it, often downright disgusting process of giving birth.
Make sure you wash your hands after catching Antibirth on Amazon Prime Video!