After ignoring the warnings of a troubled mother, a social worker
and her two children are soon haunted by a vengeful ghost.
The Curse of La Llorona (2019)
Directed by Michael Chaves
Written by Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Iaconis
Starring Linda Cardellini, Roman Christou, Jaynee-Lynne Kinchen, Raymond Cruz, Marisol Ramirez, Patricia
Velasquez, Sean Patrick Thomas, Tony Amendola
Spin-Off of 2013's The Conjuring
Who would have thought when 2013’s The Conjuring was released, it would spawn one of horror’s biggest franchises? I certainly didn’t. With that though, here we are in 2019 with The Curse of La Llorona out and Annabelle Comes Home on the way. And yes, this film is indeed a part of the franchise. Something kept out of the marketing material for whatever reason. And because of it, you’re probably wondering where it stacks with the rest of the franchise. Luckily, not the worst; but, also not the best. It’s better than The Nun at least.
Right off the bat, this film did a good job with the lore of La Llorona. Growing up in Texas, I had heard the legend of The Weeping Woman. And, trust me, it’s quite creepy. This film, being based off the very legend, honors the title character and makes her suitably scary. If only they had kept it in Mexico. The decision to tell the story in Los Angeles doesn’t work as well when you take into account how popular the folklore is in Mexican culture. Luckily, the actors do a great job with the material. I generally cared about what was happening to the characters and if they would make it out of this supernatural predicament. Now, the biggest things that kept me from loving this movie is two things. First, the jump scares. The Conjuring universe has a formula, and you can feel it here from the very beginning. Second, is the third act. The end culminates in a lot of showing of La Llorona, which makes her less scary. And, the way she may or may not have been vanquished is not very well explained beforehand, which just lead to some confusion.
The best way to describe this movie is for everything that works, there are just as many things that don’t. The story is well told and the actors do great, but the end makes the title character less scary and the need to place this in Los Angeles feels like a huge missed opportunity. Still, I would recommend this to people. Especially fans of The Conjuring franchise. It’s not the worst way to kill some time.