Sunday Matinee: The Babadook

The-Babadook-PosterThe Babadook is an Australian horror movie that was quietly released here in North American first at a few movie festivals (the first was Sundance) and then in three theatres. The critical acclaim for the film has been building as is word of month, it’s finally been released on VOD but there’s still no word on when it will get a DVD or Blu-ray release here in North America.

Written and directed by Jennifer Kent, her first feature film, the movie is loosely based on her earlier creepy short film Monster. A woman (Essie Davis) who lost her husband six years earlier finds that her son (Noah Wiseman) has been acting out lately. He believes that there’s a monster in their house and he finds a storybook about the creature on his bookcase. After they read the book strange things start happening.

I’ve been getting kind of tired of the current slate of horror movies lately, all of them seem to be about possession or hauntings, the monsters all seem to fled the big screen. And this is still kind of in that vein of the possession/haunting genre but with a creepy children’s monster that may or may not exist. Davis doesn’t believe in the creature and after she destroys the children’s book, another appears telling her that the Babadook will possess her and make her kill if she continues to deny it’s existence.

This is a pretty creepy film as is the short film Monster that the movie is based off of. Both deal with a creepy monster stalking a child and a single mother fighting the creature. Both films have the similar endings, which not to give it away the ending kind of amuses me. This is a really good first film for a low budget effort.

Author: Shane Hnetka

Shane Hnetka spends most of his life watching movies and reading comic books, using his vast knowledge of genre culture for evil instead of good.