I first became aware of The Babadook a fair while ago, at about the time that film festival audiences were raving about it. A low-budget, Australian, independent horror film, centring on a small cast, it seemed exactly my sort of thing. It also seemed like exactly the sort of thing which would get an all-too-brief release in a few small independent cinemas, before disappearing.
Fortunately (for me) not so! I am surprised and a little confused at the amount of coverage it has received, and more so to be able to see it in my local purveyor of cinema.
So the stakes are raised. In a pretty weak field of horror films out for Halloween (Note: Horns is not a horror film), this looked like the stand out offering. Which is a tough burden for any film to carry.
I’ve mentioned before in my reviws that American Horror Story‘s latest season is heavily inspired by the 1930s horror film Freaks. On a couple of occasions they have almost recreated whole scenes from the cult classic.
It’s a brave move in a way, but also a necessary one. In terms of the brand of horror which American Horror Story employs, Freaks could have been an early progenitor. There’s the body horror element, clearly. But that is neither the whole nor the larger share of it.
What is becoming clear already in this season, is that whilst the freaks may have all manner of physical deformities, it is the unseen perversions and damages which are the real freak show; a field in which the “normal” characters are far and away the most disturbing.
Read on…(and mind the spoilers!)