The fears of a single mom raising a difficult child become immanent when a pop-up book about a monstrous being called the Babadook suddenly appears in her son's room.
I was blown away by The Babadook. The forerunner of a wave of feature-length debut horror films that instantly earn a place at the top of the pile, Jennifer Kent's is a film that understands how to control the audience's connection to a character - causing us to identify with, be repulsed by, and ultimately care about each of the characters in turn. There's a touch of Freudian psychology made literal, but it's a movie about trauma, processing, and moving on like few others before it.
CAST + CREW
Director: Jennifer Kent (The Nightingale)
Cast: Essie Davis (Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries, Mindhorn)
Daniel Henshall (Skin, Snowtown)
CONTENT (spoilered; highlight for warnings)
parental abuse, child gaslighting, violence against animals, emotional abuse
CAREER STATS [on a scale from 1 (least) to 10 (most)]
The rough stuff isn't too rough, but the tension is thick.
The Babadook's monstrousness is offset by a human terror.
If you have a bad relationship with your parents, add 2.
I have a hard time imagining anyone looking for horror
and not appreciating The Babadook on a deep level!
Housebound, Dead Alive, Psycho, What We Do in the Shadows