A little boy, a mysterious picture book, a strung-out mother still struggling to cope with the death of her husband six years earlier, and one very sinister monster, who may or may not be coming to kill them both.
“If it’s in a word, or it’s in a look – you can’t get rid of the Babadook!”
Landing in British and Irish cinemas this weekend – just in time for Halloween, of course – The Babadook, starring Essie Davis alongside newcomer Noah Wiseman, marks the feature debut of writer-director Jennifer Kent. Already being hailed as a modern day masterpiece of horror cinema, it has also performed a relatively rare feat for a genre film, picking up a slew of four and five star reviews.
Drawing influence from a vast back catalogue of creepy, sinister filmmaking, Kent has crafted a film more concerned with the meat of psychological dread than with cheap, visceral jump scares. A stand-out hit at the recent Film4 Fright Fest in London, it now screens for audiences across the UK and Ireland in what is undoubtedly one of the widest releases of an Australian film in the British Isles for quite some time (discounting, of course, vaguely ‘Australian’ films like The Great Gatsby and The Lego Movie).
Distribution company Icon have created a very handy bookings site (on the Powio platform) to help you find screenings of The Babadook at nearby cinemas (it even tells you which bus to catch!). If you want to get really primed for the experience, however, there’s also a deliciously creepy little mini-site dedicated to the book within the film, and the official UK trailer, which is pretty darn creepy all on its own: