Birth/Rebirth (2023) – Review/ Summary (with Spoilers)

Movie Poster for Birth/Rebirth featuring Marin Ireland and Judy Reyes

“Birth/Rebirth” in using death as the villain, and humanity as morally grey, gives you an engaging horror film that isn’t dependent on blood, guts, and violence to keep you watching.

General Information

Director(s) Laura Moss
Screenplay By Laura Moss, Brendan J. O’Brien
Based On N/A
Date Released (In Theaters) August 18, 2023
Genre(s) Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi
Film Length 1 Hour 38 Minutes
Content Rating Rated R
Noted Characters and Cast
Dr. Rosalind Kaspar Marin Ireland
Celie Judy Reyes
Lila A.J. Lister

What Is “Birth/Rebirth” Rated And Why?

“Birth/Rebirth” is Rated R and contains:

  • Dialog: Cursing
  • Violence: Violence against animals, including medical experimentation, violence against pregnant women
  • Sexual Content: There is nudity from Marin Ireland
  • Miscellaneous: Depiction of a miscarriage, depiction of an autopsy being done, and depiction of blood

Film Summary

This content contains pertinent spoilers. Also, images and text in this post may contain affiliate links. If a purchase is made from those sites, we may earn money or products from the company.

Celie is a nurse and single mom, via IVF, raising her 6-year-old daughter Lila with some help from her community. However, after Lila contracts bacterial meningitis, she dies. Enter Dr. Rosalind Kaspar, who, since their mother died, has been working on ways to reanimate people. After bringing a pig, named after her mom, back to life, she decides Lila will be her next experiment, the first full-on human revival.

At first, Celie isn’t aware of what Dr. Kaspar is doing, just that between the hospital and where they send dead bodies, something happened. Dr. Kaspar, who handles doing pathology, is confronted multiple times, and being that Celie and Dr. Kaspar work at the same hospital, she gets a hold of her address when no one gives Celie answers, and she discovers Lila, partly alive, in Dr. Kaspar’s apartment.

With the desperation of a mother combined with a long-held interest in biology from Dr. Kaspar, the two do everything they can, including highly unethical things, to not only keep Lila alive but see if she could truly become the little girl Celie so dearly loved.

Character Descriptions

Please Note: This character guide is not an exhaustive list of every cast member, and character descriptions may contain what can be considered spoilers.


Celie is a nurse who works in the birthing unit of a New York hospital who, on her own, decided to have a child of her own via IVF. It was hard, but it eventually led to Lila being born, and while it is a challenge to be a single mom, Lila creates those moments that make it all worth it.


Lila (A.J. Lister) after rebirth
“Lila (A.J. Lister) after rebirth,” Birth/Rebirth, directed by Laura Moss, 2023, (IFC Films/ Shudder)

Six years old and into spiders, Lila was your run-of-the-mill kid. She likes attention and has odd interests. Bathing wasn’t necessarily her top priority, but did it because she had to. Oh, and she liked certain songs which would make you want to puncture your ear drum played on repeat.

Dr. Kaspar

With her mother teaching biology, Dr. Kaspar has been fascinated with the subject since 2nd grade and has even become a doctor to further her studies and the practice of understanding the human body. However, without funding, she has sought out unethical ways to explore what it means to be alive or even come back from death, which was particularly jumpstarted after her mom’s death.


Our Rating: Positive (Worth Seeing)Recommended

Notable Performances or Moments

Rosalind Warming Up And Becoming Less Robotic Over Time

When we initially meet Rosalind, without a confirmed diagnosis, she reads as someone autistic. She doesn’t make eye contact, is very much for routine and logic, she isn’t the most socially inept and can become very obsessive when it comes to her work. With that, she struggles with her co-worker and his needs as a parent, and when it comes to interacting with Celie, initially, she is as cold and calculated as she is with all things.

However, as time goes on, something shifts. She builds a connection with Celie beyond the desire of a shared success in bringing Lila back to life, and there is a bond. It goes beyond routine or even liking Celie cooks and does try to make Rosalind’s life easier. There is an emotional connection that pushes the idea that, be it after her mom died, after an unspoken event, or who knows what else, Rosalind cut herself off.

Yet, by seeing Celie and Lila’s relationship, feeling part of that, even bonding with Lila beyond the experiments to check her progress, she is reborn almost as much as Lila.


Celie and Lila’s Connection

While Rosalind’s growth is wonderful, it doesn’t replace, compensate, or eclipse Celie and Lila’s connection. Up until a certain point we see Lila alive, and she is adorable. Certain moments, like her saying she needs to tell Celie a secret, and the secret is she needs more attention – since Celie was focused on her phone, were cute and warms your heart. Then when you add in Lila’s separation anxiety, how happy she is to see her mom after daycare and talk about spiders, you are given more than enough to have the relationship established, and imagine all that is unseen and unsaid.

This makes it so when Lila is brought back to life, you are as excited for Celie as Celie is excited for Lila. Then add in Lila pretty much going through the process of going from barely being able to speak or express herself and slowly developing from baby to toddler, it excited you that there is the possibility that, with some unethically sourced bodily fluids, Lila could become the six-year-old she was again.


If you like this movie, we recommend:

  1. Claws (If You Want To See More Judy Reyes)

Check out our movies page for our latest movie reviews and recommendations.


Answers to some questions you may have regarding this movie:

The Reason The Movie Is Named “Birth/Rebirth”

Because Lila was born human, and reborn in some Frankenstein-esque state

Does “Birth/Rebirth” Setup A Sequel or Prequel?

Yes, after Celie figures a way to get the fluids Lila needs

Yes, after Celie figures a way to get the fluids Lila needs


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Birth/Rebirth (2023) – Overview


“Birth/Rebirth” is probably one of the best films under the Shudder brand we’ve seen in a long time, as it matches performances, writing, and a true reason to get invested in its characters, due to not being dependent on gore to keep your attention.

  • Rosalind Warming Up And Becoming Less Robotic Over Time - 86%
  • Celie and Lila’s Connection - 84%
User Review
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  • Rosalind Warming Up And Becoming Less Robotic Over Time
  • Celie and Lila’s Connection


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