La Llorona (1960)

Rene Cardona directed this take on the Crying Woman of Mexican legend. It starts with newlyweds being told the legend and flashes back to the origin of the story, where a woman named Luisa is spurned by her husband for not being pure Spanish. She kills their children before being put to death. The reason the story is being told to them? Because the bride is a descendent of the conquistador who wronged Luisa. Now, his entire family has been cursed to die violently.

I’ve joked that every few years, we get a new and worse retelling of this legend. Luckily, this is one of the better versions, with an ending filled with some genuine fright and doom. When viewed by modern audiences, it will seem slow and like a stage play, but to me, that was part of its charm.

You can watch this on YouTube.

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