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A Female Director Won Best Horror Film at Fantastic Fest, and That's Cool as Shit

By Cindy Davis | Industry | September 23, 2014 |

By Cindy Davis | Industry | September 23, 2014 |

You know what I’m sick of hearing about women? I’m sick of hearing they’re being exploited or abused every single time I read the news. I’m sick of reading that in response to a grand, inspiring speech, people are threatening to release stolen nude photos of the woman who made it. Instead of going on and on about how horrified I am about the bad things that happen, I’m going to use my *power* for good — by throwing out some good stuff to negate the crappy stuff. Like the fact that Australian writer/director Jennifer Kent just won Best Horror Film and Best Horror Screenplay at this year’s Fantastic Fest. That’s damned cool. Heck, in the male-dominated film kingdom, just being a female director at all is cool. And getting noticed with awards is yummy icing on a career cupcake.

So let’s get to the sprinkles…Kent’s film, The Babadook, also features a female protagonist ( in the form of widowed mother Amelia (Essie Davis [Best Actress - Horror winner]), who’s doing her best to raise her traumatized son Samuel (Noah Wieseman [Best Actor - Horror winner) after her husband is violently killed. Obsessed with monsters and plagued by nightmares, Samuel grows ever more out of control. When an odd storybook called The Babadook appears on their doorstep, the boy becomes convinced the book’s creature is from his own nightmares; as Samuel’s behavior turns violent, Amelia begins to wonder if her son is right. Earning great reviews and comparisons to Stephen King’s The Shining, Kent’s feature film debut is going right on my list.

Here’s the trailer and poster:


Check out all the Fantastic Fest winners here, and a special congratulations to Jennifer Kent.

Cindy Davis, (Twitter) wonders if people still say “cool as shit.”

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