At ten minutes long, this made me jump twice, which has to be some kind of record.

This is the short film that inspired writer/director Jennifer Kent’s excellent first film, The Babadook and it plays mostly like a condensed version of that story. There are even the small hints at the mother character’s fragile state of mind with the brief shot of the roaches crawling on a plate in the kitchen! Mostly though, I’m struck by how Kent approximated the black & white cinematography of her short when she made the leap to full color for The Babadook. I’m a total sucker for high contrast black & white and really hope Kent gets to work it into another film some day. I’m also loving the visual rhythms and short hand she creates with the scenes in the kitchen. Lots of silent storytelling before she sends a monster screaming into the story.

As you might imagine, there are potential spoilers for The Babadook to be found here, so you may want to hold off watching this until you’ve seen that film. Or not!