Six years after the violent death of her husband, Amelia is at a loss. She struggles to discipline her ‘out of control’ 6 year-old, Samuel, 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.
I always get excited when I discover some small, independent horror movie coming down the pipeline that promises to be absolutely terrifying, and that’s definitely the case with The Babadook. The film had a modest budget, $30,000 of which came from a Kickstarter campaign, and The Babadook has apparently been terrifying people at Sundance. It may not break any new ground with the idea of a child’s story boogieman creeping on a mother and her son, but damn, this is scary stuff. Those pop-up book illustrations are the stuff of nightmares.
The Babadook is still touring the festival circuit – no word yet on a wide release.