‘La Llorona’ Review: An Artful Guatemalan Horror Movie About the Ghosts of a Genocide

‘La Llorona’ Review: An Artful Guatemalan Horror Movie About the Ghosts of a Genocide
Reviews of Jayro Bustamante’s “La Llorona” (“The Weeping Woman”) are obligated to mention that this quiet and trembling phantasmagoria about the ghosts of the Guatemalan Civil War has virtually nothing to do with Michael Chaves’ “The Curse of La Llorona,” the schlocky jump-scare machine that Warner Bros. released last spring. Aside from their shared roots in the same piece of Latin American folklore, these two films couldn’t have less in common; one is a slow-burn séance for the victims of a recent genocide, and the other is a PG-13 studio programmer that was only produced because of its ridiculous margins ($122 million in ticket sales against a $9 million budget is a job well done).

And yet, maybe it wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world if critics let their readers assume a more direct connection between these wildly different visions of death. While anyone who subscribes to
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