Review: La Llorona (Sundance 2020)

Title: La Llorona
MPAA Rating: Not Yet Rated
Director: Jayro Bustamante
Starring: María Mercedes Coroy, María Telón, Julio Diaz
Runtime: 1 hr 37 mins

What It Is: Former Guatemalan dictator Enrique Monteverde (Diaz) has been put on trial for all of his atrocities against the native Mayan-Ixel people of the Central American country. As the trial ends and the verdict is handed down a mysterious woman begins to work as a maid. All of Enriques’s other maids (most of which are OF Mayan-Ixel decent) have quit out of fear. This mysterious woman named Alma (Coroy) has a rather haunting presence.

What We Think: This is BY FAR not the film you think it is. It’s a thriller that makes a statement on the treatment of the indigenous people of Guatemala. This is such a great film. The acting here is stellar and this is especially true of María Mercedes Coroy. The relative unknown here in the United States pulls off her role here with a mysticism that I personally vibed with. Bustamante gives this film such a creepy aura and Monteverde never comes off as this “feeble old man”. That helps with the story as it all unfolds. Excellently crafted and that’s the thing here. The filmmaking carries this.

Our Grade: B+, A wonderfully told film and one that touches on something most films that get released in the United States don’t touch on. The plight of the Mayan-Ixel people. Discrimination and awful racism towards them is something many don’t know anything about. The element stuck with me as my grandfather is of Mayan descent. I haven’t earned the ability to call myself that personally (since I was born here in the good ole U.S of A). Regardless these are tales that deserve and need to be told. To wrap it all in this creepy thriller of a film is such a unique spin. A wonderful film and one Shudder should be happy to have. Unlike Scare Me.

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