The Sundance film festival is usually a great showcase of dramas and other films with emotions and stuff. That’s your cream of the crop right there, as comedies and action flicks rarely get the film critic nod. But every now and then, one other genre comes along and sweeps audiences off their feet.
This year, that horror film happens to be The Babadook, an Australian movie where the only thing more dangerous than a broken family is an ancient evil spirit coming for your children. Frightening stuff.
Six years after the violent death of her husband, Amelia (Essie Davis) is at a loss. She struggles to discipline her ‘out of control’ 6 year-old, Samuel (Noah Wiseman), a son she finds impossible to love. Samuel’s dreams are plagued by a monster he believes is coming to kill them both. When a disturbing storybook called ‘The Babadook’ turns up at their house, Samuel is convinced that the Babadook is the creature he’s been dreaming about. His hallucinations spiral out of control, he becomes more unpredictable and violent. Amelia, genuinely frightened by her son’s behaviour, is forced to medicate him. But when Amelia begins to see glimpses of a sinister presence all around her, it slowly dawns on her that the thing Samuel has been warning her about may be real.
Man, that looks genuinely terrifying on multiple sides. It’s a slick looking film, with some great visuals, and possibly a new horror movie icon to throw into the library with that mysterious Babadook. Critics say that the pairing of Essie Davis as the mom under attack and Noah Wiseman as her kid with issues is pure gold, and that the two just steal the entire movie without distracting from the horror that is present. Directed by Jennifer Kent, the movie has yet to get picked up for release, but expect that to change soon.
Last Updated: January 22, 2014