Number 15 of the Countdown to Halloween
The Curse of La Llorona
Movie Review by Siobahn Harris
“She wants your children”… just not enough to actually take them when she has the chance. The Curse of La Llorona is another movie that I was pretty pumped to see. I really love a good ghost story and it’s no secret that I’m a believer in the spirit world. Therefore, any ghost story already has a good chance to scare the shit out of me, but not so much here.
A social worker who is assigned to a case faces something very different when she finds two children locked in a closet. Going against the mother’s wishes, she released the boys and takes them into protective custody. However, doing so introduces her to a dark spirit world that will put her own children in danger.
La Llorona was a beautiful woman who fell in love. Her and her husband had two children and she was happy. Until she found out that he was cheating on her. In order to get back at him, she drowned their two children. Sounds like an episode of Deadly Women. She instantly regretted what she had done, but it was too late. She was cursed to wander the world taking children.
Outside of the movie, many children were actually warned to be good or La Llorona would take them away. I think that’s what makes this movie so interesting, because it will hit home for so many.
Anywhoop, so when the social worker’s actions results in two deaths, La Llorona zeros in on her children. Showing up slowly at first, but then basically becoming the kids babysitter. She even gives the girl a bath. Best. Babysitter. Ever.
However, the family is pretty particular about how to bathe the children and holding them underwater is apparently frowned upon. So they turn to a retired priest to help them get rid of La Llorona. Unfortunately, it might already be too late.
With this being a big debate right now, I think it’s best I start with the part I hated about this movie, the jump scares. Please don’t confuse what I am saying, I do love a good, well-timed, jump scare, but I do not think it’s needed to make a scary movie. There are those that would argue that a horror movie isn’t a horror movie without a jump scare. But that’s just not true. If jump scares are what makes the horror genre scary, then I have been watching some very confusing comedies and romance movies.
In The Curse of La Llorona, every time La Llorona shows up there is a jump scare. I would understand it happening once, maybe twice, but every time? It’s just not needed. I think if they did some well placed hidden scares, it would have really helped this film. For instance, they could have placed figures in the background or played with shadows. Not something for the characters to see, but for the viewers to see and get scared by.
When a horror movie bases all of their scares on jump scenes, it’s telling the audience that they aren’t confident in their ability to scare us. A jump scare is just a shocking moment that causes an involuntary reaction, it’s not real fear. Bring more real fear to the table and you’ll see that jump scares aren’t needed as much.
Let’s chat about the fact that La Llorona was alone with these children on multiple occasions and instead of just drowning them, she decides to toy with them. Is she only in it for the hunt? Does she just prefer the play tug-o-war with the parents? It’s weird. Kill these kids and you will be able to move on to the next.
This movie does cross over with another movie, which I really liked. It was such a small bit of information, but I thought it was a nice add in. Also, I could see the similarities between this and the sister story it’s linked to.
This was a pretty good movie. This is one of those quiet slow movies, but it’s not something they drag out. I think they did a really good job telling the story but there was just those little areas that I wish they changed.
No. The fear in this movie is based on those jump scares, and that’s not True Fear. Don’t get me wrong, I jumped at a few of those, but that doesn’t make me scared to turn out the lights. Hell, I’m sitting in the dark writing this review by candle light, no fear. The Curse of La Llorona is a movie you can watch without fear of seeing a lot of blood, but if you are easily scared this one might be one to watch with the lights on.