THE CURSE OF LA LLORONA Review — The Ghost That’s a Crying Shame

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The Curse of La Llorona review — the tale of the weeping woman who steals children scared me almost to death.

The Curse of La Llorona reviewFirst off, for those of you who are not aware of the tale of La Llorona, let me give you some background to help you appreciate the film more.

La Llorona (pronounced Your Row Na) means “The Weeping Woman.” The short version of this Mexican folklore tale is that she drowned her two sons, then took her own life, and now wanders the world looking for them, drowning any other children she finds out at night along the way. The sound of her sobs always precedes her dastardly deeds.

I’ve heard more than one parent (or babysitter) use La Llorona to jokingly scare kids, kind of like the boogey man. “You kids get back here now, or La Llorona will get you…I think I hear her crying…”

So the choice of monster/ghost/legend for this horror film is a good one. The question is, how will freshman director Michael Chavez and screenwriters Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Iaconis (Five Feet Apart) execute?

They were smart to set this film in the ’70’s, well before cell phones could bring help to your door in a matter of minutes. As with all horror movies, there are plenty of opportunities to ask the question, “Why don’t they just…” Coming back with, “Because they didn’t have cell phones or good security cameras back then” is the answer to almost all of them.

They were also smart to cast Linda Cardellini as the single mother of two adorable children who tangled with the weepy wraith. Raymond Cruz as a stoic, religious ghostbuster is also a fun choice.

Also in the filmmakers’ favor is the discreet handling of scenes involving horror and death with children. That can be tricky and icky if you’re not careful.

Does The Curse of La Llorona break any boundaries or show us any artistic images we’ve ever seen before? Well, no. But for a pretty much by-the-numbers ghost story, it scared the hell out of me. And really, that’s all I ask.

Rated R

1 Hour 33 Minutes

If this The Curse of La Llorona review inspires you to run out and see it, get times and tickets at

The Curse of La Llorona review — the tale of the weeping woman who steals children scared me almost to death.


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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

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