• Joshua Buck

The Babadook (2014) Review

A single mother and her child fall into a deep well of paranoia when an eerie children’s book titled “Mister Babadook” manifests in their home.

The colour spectrum of the movie is a very tame grey and blue. This works perfectly for the theme of the movie of dealing with a deceased husband showing that there isn’t much hope for this family and that his death still looms over their lives. This contrasts to the colour at the end of the movie where Amelia and Samuel have learnt to cope with their demons that have been lingering over them for 7 years and the world is brighter showing greens as they have learnt to cope with their demons.

This film was shot very well with a great sense of enigma in the shots leaving deep blacks in the background for the Babadook to haunt the scene. Some of the shots were very good and very reminiscent of older horror and slasher movies such as Prom Night and Halloween.

I liked how the cast was kept small as it made the story feel very intimate and in turn delivered a great performance from Essie Davis who to me was completely unheard of.

The Babadook demon was very well designed and made me feel uneasy whether I saw it in the pop-up book or when you see it appear for the first time in the room. I loved how its movement was almost stop motion and made it look quite disgusting and made him feel like he was straight out of The Sandman (1991).

I thought the narrative was very good and I’m beginning to learn that good horrors not only are a one that scare you and are creative and bring something new to the table but the story has to represent something. Like It Follows representing the effects of STD’s and this film representing parental issues and dealing with issues such as loss.

To conclude, I found this film very uncomfortable to watch which is probably what the movie was trying to achieve. The Babadook was an all-round enjoyable horror but not my favourite.

Overall, I rate this movie: 3.5/5.

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