Great things come in small packages.

Last year, Australian film The Babadook took the horror world by storm with its story about a single mother coping with her difficult child, financial strain, and a monstrous presence in her house.  Jennifer Kent’s slow burning magnum opus used psychological terror and subtlety to paint a nuanced portrait of mental illness (possibly untreated and lingering postpartum depression), rather than relying on jump scares and gory effects.  But how did this critically acclaimed film come to be?

Nearly ten years before The Babadook hit theaters, Kent wrote and directed a short film called “Monster”, which she calls “the baby Babadook.”  Similar to the short film “Mamá” by Andy and Barbara Muschietti which inspired the feature Mama, “Monster,” which screened in over 50 festivals around the world, helped Kent write and direct her first feature length film.  The main storyline is almost identical to The Babadook and it is shot entirely in black and white, which adds to the overall eeriness and claustrophobic feel of the short.  It’s available to watch for free on Vimeo: