Review: THE BABADOOK (2014)
After losing her husband in a tragic car accident, a young mother is slowly losing grip on reality because of a dark presense that dwells within her house.
Now, I saw this on a festival and to me, it was one of the best movies of the whole event. This is pretty low budget but was creepy as hell. In a way it reminded me about the old NOSFERATU movie, which is probably intended and it works out greatly for THE BABADOOK. The word comes from the serbian word for “boogeyman” and fits perfectly for the movie. William Friedkin, who is the director of one of my favorite horror movies THE EXORCIST called this the most terrifying film he ever saw and coming from a master director like him, this compliment really means something. The movie was financed over kickstarter with a budget of only 30.000 Dollar and for that ridiculously low amount of money, this is a fantastic movie. Most of the horror happens off-screen but every effect we see is professional. The story is based on the shortfilm MONSTER from 2005, which is similarly creepy.
Part of the story focuses on the young mother, who is unable to cope with her life as a parent, while the other half consists of a more typical horror movie. But everything is filmed in a very fresh way and everything about this movie evaporizes “originiality”. The acting is really great and some scenes are so creepy that it might take a while until you forgot them again. The movie takes an element like the tragic death of the father and the mother´s mourning and combines it with a supernatural aspect that impressionally portrays how people´s emotions can dramatically differ from how strangers perceive them. There is one scene, when the young mother get´s visited by the child´s protective service and it seems like she´s a terrible mother and you can almost sense her horror about what goes on in her house. Towards the end, you feel really desperate and THE BABADOOK ouzes out a vibe that you hardly see in horror movies.
Most of the horror happens on an emotional level and this is not one of the movies that tries to scare you with surprising shock effects. It´s rather the creepyness that is the true strenght of THE BABADOOK. It´s absolutely not scare-filled and some people might be disappointed because this is not a typical horrorfilm. The effects are very primitive but made with so much love to detail that it absolutely pays off. Don´t watch it when you are in a bad mood because it is a strong emotional flick that can really leave you in a distorted state. To me, this is the best australian horror movie I ever saw and i´ve already seen a lot. THE BABADOOK literally gave me goosebumps and I really don´t know why this hasn´t been getting a faster worldwide release. But well, I can wholeheartedly recommend this great Indie Horror movie and as I am typing this, I just get the urge to watch it again!
The Babadook (2014) - 86%