The Babadook - Movie Review

The Babadook (2004)

I admittedly would have never watched the Babadook but it continuously appeared on "scariest movies on Netflix" lists and I love scary movies.  The only issue is there aren't enough (any) good ones.  So, I tuned in to see what all the fuss was about.  The Babadook did not go the cheap scare route with things jumping out from around the corner - and instead was a slow burn film that relied on straight terror to haunt the audiences.  The Babadook is about a family in ruins - the father passes away driving his pregnant wife to the hospital when she is in labor and the mother never truly recovers.  Her son, now four years old, is the other main character.  I will say the acting by both the mother (Essie Davis) and the son (Noah Wiseman) are tremendous.  This is an Australian film, so you've likely never heard of either of them (or the film, itself) as it's the largest role in either of their careers.

This isn't a film for the "average" movie-goer and it's not one that I thoroughly enjoyed or will rave about - but I do very much appreciate the film.  The two characters are the film and the two characters are so, so good.  The scariest part of the film has nothing to do with The Babadook but has everything to do with people live like this around the world.  It's a harrowing glimpse into what some people experience through loss, grief, or other circumstances that may not be a part of everyone's life.  An obnoxious four year old at the beginning of the movie struggles to find his way, yet turns into the character that is relatable and understandable by the end.  I won't get into the film too deep to prevent spoilers, but if you enjoy slow burns, The Babadook is a great film.  If you enjoy your horror movies along the lines of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre or Halloween - this won't be your cup of tea.  All in all, a film worth the watch, but my rating portrays the way I think about things - a 6 is a movie I'm glad I watched once, but will never watch again - and that's right where The Babadook falls.

Rating: 6.0/10