The Babadook



1) Losing her husband.2) mentally challenged son. 3) His son being expelled from school. 4) She starts losing her mind as her son becomes too much.


The lighting of the house is dark, showing the unwelcoming location.


The shots were experimental and artistic which showcased the movements of Avant and modernism. Ladczuk uses pans, tilts and tracking shots in the film to keep the viewer engaged. To prove that the film has an individual style and flow Ladczuk uses both extreme and medium close-ups. The lighting is dark in the house to give the viewer the unwelcoming condition of the house. In most of the film is shot in high contrast which causes shadows. This represents Amelia’s emptiness. Lighting has also been used with or alongside the shots and script to portray progress in time. An example is the light mimicking the sun by fading from on to off.


Two scenes that capture my attention is the last scene and the scene where Amelia begins to read the book for Samuel. When Amelia is reading the book soundtrack is well used to build up the tension. Immediately she closes the book, there is silence. When she opens the book again to read the noise track starts again. Once Amelia realises the nature of the book, there are new sounds which increase in volume. The scene gets to its climax with a death threat from babadook. The last scene is directly opposite of this one. Amelia and Samuel get worms from the Garden and are seen feeding the babadook in the basement. Now they have a stronger bond, its no longer fear and anger for Amelia and Samuel but love.


When Amelia and Samuel discover the babadook book in Samuel’s room. Tension is brought into the scene using sound. It all starts with an innocent tone which builds up within two minutes. When Amelia begins to read the book, it is all nice and good for Samuel, until she gets to the third page and notices something is wrong. A soft droning noise gently fades into the background. Then the sound slowly rises in volume as the text become more menacing. The noise stops immediately Amelia closes the book.


The big metaphor in this movie is that the babadook is grief itself. Which the grief of Amelia’s husband passing on. Which she is constantly reminded by her son Samuel who shares his birthday and his father’s last day on earth. The movie mostly focuses on Amelia’s denial, which changes her into being so bitter. This can be seen when she tires the book into pieces.



The babadook is creepy, but it is made more creepy by the film’s sound design. The babadook also uses silence as part of the sound design to create more tension. Silence usually emphasises on a creepy mood. There is silence, then suddenly scratching upon the wood. This is very frightening given nothing else but silence. Later the dog bucks which makes the viewer relax, as we know where the sound is coming from and not the monster.


Many may argue that this movie is a horror movie, but I beg to differ. It is a psychological thriller. Reason being the final scene where Amelia and Samuel are seen feeding babadook some worms that they had picked from the garden. This is what separates a psychological thriller from a horror. In conclusion, it is a good movie, where sound and light are well utilized.