Director – Issa Lopez (Three Sundays, Secondary Effects)
Starring – Paola Lara (El Chema, Reina), Juan Roman Lopez, and Nery Arredondo (Narcos vs. Zombies, I Carry You with Me)
Release Date – 2017
Rating – 3/5
I originally planned on spending the week watching Andy Sidaris action flicks but that changed earlier in the week when I received the steelbook for the 2017 Mexican horror fantasy film Tigers Are Not Afraid. RLJE and Shudder released the film on DVD and blu. Honestly, I had never heard of this film until I started receiving press releases for it just a few weeks back. This made me skeptical of the release considering it was a 3 year old film but I was still open minded and at the end of the day I really enjoyed it. I want to thank RLJE for sending this one my way!
**Spoiler Alert** The film follows a young girl in a small Mexican city riddled with crime. The cartel keeps the city in a state of panic. While she is in school the cartel guns down someone in the street nearby forcing everyone in a panic. A teacher gives her three pieces of chalk to represent three wishes for when she finds herself scared again. Things take an even darker turn when the cartel kidnaps her mother and kills her. She is forced onto the streets where she tries to join a gang of orphans. After gaining their trust they reluctantly let her in but things with the cartel are far from over and the horrors of this Mexican town shows itself. **Spoiler Alert**
I went into this knowing it was a horror fantasy film about children set against a poverty stricken city but I did not expect it to hit as hard as it did. This parent hit me a little harder than other films and I blame that solely on me being a parent.
The acting in this is solid for the most part but you have to expect some level of inexperience considering how young the cast is. The story for this one has elements that I really enjoyed and others that made the film feel a little underwhelming. Several of the scenes with the kids gave me anxiety. As a parent I have to admit that these scenes had great impact. However, there is a few scenes trying to establish character development that did drag on a bit too long.
Finally, if you are looking for a bloody and gory horror flick then you will be disappointed. The film is dark and gritty with some blood but it doesn’t rely on carnage to hit the viewer. There is some blood but the deaths impact you more on an emotional level more than it does for entertainment. Overall, Tigers Are Not Afraid is an uncomfortable watch for a parent but the dark and gritty story doesn’t leave a lasting impression with the viewer. It is well worth your time but don’t expect a film that will stay with you. Check it out now on DVD and blu.