Cait Hates Horror : Babadook (2014)
Before watching The Babadook, I made all the necessary preparations of a horror movie novice and bonafide scaredy cat. The browser window for Netflix was teeny tiny, flanked by Pinterest. It a beautiful, sunny day and I was surrounded by assorted cookies.
At first, I actually managed some real analysis. I tried to find interesting film-making elements, a la the grey palleted set design or the low lighting in specific corners of the house. You see, I'm three movies into this challenge. I'm finally starting to see scary movies as just movies, and not future nightmare blueprints.
Yea, about half way through The Babadook, I started yelling out loud at my desk "WHO PUT THAT BOOK THERE?" and "OH MY GOD THE JACKET!"
The Babadook is a low-budget Australian Indie Film about a mother and son dealing with grief. There is very little gore or elaborate special effects. Yet, it still feeds my illogical fear of inanimate objects that are definitely not supposed to move, but then they do, and holy jacket on a chair, why do they do that? At one point I had to pause the movie and open the door to my apartment hallway just to check, you know, for monsters. (I am a full grown adult.)
The scariest part of this movie is it accessed what it was like to be a little kid in the dark with a borderline hallucinogenic imagination. And they didn't use blood, or murders, or creepy weapons. They just use shadows in a house. Shadows are terrifying.
I loved this movie in the way that you love spicy food that's a little too spicy. You know it's worth it, but you're also like dear god, make it stop.
Things I’ve learned from The Babadook
Monsters that want to "eat your insides" are scary, but you know what's worse... Mom Squads. These moms were just sitting around with their husbands, whom are all alive and shit, judging a widow. Armed with weird transformer strollers and a will-talk-to-your-manager attitude, they are easily the most unsettling part of this movie.
Children's books are often creepy and awful, but people are just cool with it.
Coat racks are just shadow monsters waiting to happen, you guys.
If you're working for shift pay and something terrible happens to your family, then you're haunted by a creepy dude from a book, and all you wanna do is get some friggin' sleep... HA! You're not getting time off.
Somebody give that kid an Oscar. Please. He earned it.
Why does this movie matter?
Therapy is important. Listen, this isn't the Middle Ages. There are professionals out there for people who just can't even. Don't hold your feelings in and ignore stuff, no matter what the mom squad/Spanish inquisition says!
Sometimes, you have to Home Alone your mom. Not all moms are perfect. They can get super stressed out, because they have careers, take care of the household duties, help with school work, cook all the food, plus too many other things. So maybe your mom can go a little crazy and then want to murder you. You gotta know how to properly Home Alone booby trap your mom, so you can bring her back to sanity.
Is this scary?
At one point in my notes for this movie I wrote, "No, no, no no no nononononono AHHHHH!" In reaction to what? I'm not sure. But it should give you an inclining that The Babdook is at level maximum freak out.