The Babadook (2014)

babadook

 

 

The Babadook is a small budget Australian film by director and writer Jennifer Kent that took the horror world by storm last year. I may be a little late catching up with the film but since I’m three years late with an update, it seems fitting.

The film opens with a stylistic shot depicting a car-crash that is reminiscent of 2007’s Inside and, much like Inside, sets up the emotional landscape for the rest of the film. We are then properly introduced to our main characters: widowed mother Amelia Vannick and her unruly son Samuel Vannick; played by Essie Davis and Noah Wiseman. A slow first half hour teaches the audience that Amelia’s husband was killed driving her to the hospital to give birth to Samuel and that she has not been able to cope with the child’s or her own emotional issues. Samuel is obsessed with monsters and terrified of his mother dying, while also being hyperactive.

When a macabre pop-up book (designed beautifully by Alexander Juhasz) appears on her son’s shelf one day things start to take a turn for the bizarre. The mother-son couple begin a spiral into the dark depths of depression and psychosis which I don’t want to say to much about, even though everyone has seen this film by now. The performance by Essie Davis is one for the history books; she sells the depth of her character’s issues from beginning to end and is the highlight of the film by far.

The Babadook is a film that should grace the shelf of horror lovers the world over. It’s a slow burn that challenges the audience to look beneath the visual layer of the film to strike at what it really means.

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Psych 9 (2010)


I’m a huge fan of psychological horror, bending the lines of reality with delusion is one of my favorite things you can capture on film. If it’s done right like Jacobs Ladder, or Video Dome, but when it’s done wrong, you end up with Psych 9.

The story follows Roslyn Hanniger, a married woman working the night shift in an recently closed hospital. Her job is to sort files, and it’s just her, and the psychiatrist upstairs left working. She starts a relationship as his patient to deal with the stress of working night shift with a serial killer on the loose. As time goes on, she slowly starts to think that the hospital is some how related to the killings. Is it just paranoia, or is something even more sinister going on?

Psych 9 has a very slow first act, which is understandable given the genre, and it’s made up for by a extremely entertaining second act. During the second act, much of the back story for our characters comes together, in a non-linear manner, which works really well for the film. But it all falls apart in the third and final act, with a weak twist I spotted a mile away.

The acting is quite good all around, except for the lead role of Roslyn by Sara Foster, I thought her direction in some of the more personal scenes just didn’t come off realistic in any sense. For the most part though, she does do a good job, it was just key moments to the film that I felt could of had a stronger impact if she had done a better job.

This is a very effects light movie, so don’t expect a lot of blood. The best we get is a little bit of gore, and a poorly done explosion. But since it’s a psychological movie, your not going in for the effects anyway.

I can’t see myself watching this one again, half way through the third act I was just wishing it was over. It’s worth a viewing if your a fan of the sub-genre, but I can’t recommend it to the casual watcher.

Score – 40%
Gore – 1/10

The Strangers (2008)

                                        

I remember seeing this back in theaters. I didn’t like it very much then. Not enough people were dying, it wasn’t gory enough for me. But I’ve come to like  much more to my horror then gore, as I got older, even finding Funny Games to be my all time scariest movie. So I was glad I decided to re-watch it for this.

So the story is simple, this couple, are in the middle of what could be the biggest fight, and best make  up sex ever, or ruin the rest of their life’s, are home for the night in a fancy house. Some one come’s to the door, and they just send them away. This set’s off a chain of psychological and some times very violent.

I don’t want to give  away then ending, but I am going to give away the best line in the movie, and if this pisses you off, I’m sorry, but I don’t really care, I can’t finish the rest of this without repeating it.

When asked why the attackers were doing this, one of the them reply’s ” Because you were home.” I think that line is the most powerful part of the movie, there’s quite a few movies that can make people afraid to answer their doors, Clockwork Orange for example. But only a few of them seem to work, Clockwork Orange, and this one for me.

I’d say you should check this one out. It say’s inspired by true events, apparently some one came to his door the same way, and he let them go, then in the morning some houses were broken in to. Alot of people I know think knowing that ruins the movie, but trust me , it doesn’t. Just because it wasn’t the same  story matters, because it is still a damn good story.

Score – 79%
Gore – 4/10

ps guys : I picked that poster cause I had a HUGE one hanging over my bed from before the movie came out. If more movie’s had poster like this, I’d been in the theater alot more when I was younger. Only recently did I start making sure I was at EVERY horror release that comes out down here now.