The Babadook (2014) – Review

Australian horror has offered many great choices and this time it gives us The Babadook, another version of our beloved Boogeyman.

Director Jennifer Kent has done a great job depicting the chaotic repercussions of letting the Babadook in and the catastrophic impact of such an encounter on an already traumatized and distressed mother.

The story follows Amelia (Essie Davis), a depressed woman who still struggles to cope with her husband’s death the day her child was born, and her 7-year-old son Samuel ( Noah Wiseman), who appears to be an aggressive and imaginative boy, obsessed with monsters creeping under the bed.

Their life seems to be an everyday struggle, as Samuel’s violent behavior drives other children away and Amelia looks as if she’s lost in her own little world, where grief and loneliness prevail.

It is when she reads a strange bedtime story to Samuel that the absolute nightmare begins. Mister Babadook is a creepy and disturbing book about a dark and eerie figure that lurks in the dark corners of the house and no one can get rid of.

Samuel becomes annoyingly obsessed with the presence of the Babadook and makes Amelia’s life even harder.

But, soon, the Babadook will take over her. Both Samuel and herself will be in great danger, as the creepy monster will seek death.

Essie Davis’s excellent performance makes everything better for The Babadook. Her talent shines through her character and she is clearly one of the movie’s biggest assets. Little Noah Wiseman is also a valuable member of the cast. His screaming voice and convincing performance compliment his character and the two of them form an excellent duo.

Even though the story of the Boogeyman is not new to the genre, Kent manages to deliver a quite unique outcome. She successfully creates a scary figure by mainly focusing on the element of darkness and eerie shadows, while the few words that the Babadook speaks throughout the movie are enough to spook the viewer.

The first half of The Babadook might seem rather mundane due to the lack of action and horror. It is more about the family’s hard life than the haunting of a creepy monster, but the second half is particularly satisfying and enjoyable, since the Babadook makes his presence known. The scenes of his haunting presence are really chilling – yet limited.

If I had to point out one thing I didn’t like about this movie, it would definitely be the ending – hands down. When I came to realize how it actually ended, I couldn’t help but feel a bit weird…and not in a good way. Despite the really odd ending, The Babadook is certainly a very entertaining choice of this year’s horror productions.

 

And to quote Colin Clive in Frankenstein: It’s Alive! It’s Alive! 6/10

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Comments
4 Responses to “The Babadook (2014) – Review”
  1. I wish I liked this as much as you! I couldn’t help but think it simply took the appearance of a horror film but at heart was a family drama.. the worst kind of drama. I liked a few of the stylistic choices (like the Babadook himself who was really creepy!) but overall was very underwhelmed.
    Thanks for keeping up the great posts!
    Jordan

    Liked by 1 person

    • maria kriva says:

      Hey you! Good to hear from you again Jordan! How have you been?? 🙂
      Yep, that’s true, the family drama was a bit exhausting. Especially since the Babadook was sooo creepy, he should have been used more! What annoyed me most was the ending! So, so, so weird!
      Can’t wait to read what you’ve been watching lately!

      Like

      • Hey Maria! Good to be back ha, I’ve been great but very busy – luckily Eddie’s been able to run things in my absence!
        Was very disappointed at how much I disliked my most anticipated film of last year, Tusk, and haven’t watched as much as I’d normally like – a few holidays among other things (including Nintendo..) have been keeping me away from the movie collection and laptop.
        How have you been??

        Liked by 1 person

      • maria kriva says:

        I still haven’t seen Tusk…there’s something about it that I don’t find very tempting! haha
        But I will get to it soon!I’m only looking forward to the year when Jeepers Creepers 3 will be released! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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