Tigers Are Not Afraid | Chicago Reader

Tigers Are Not Afraid

In this topical horror-fantasy from Mexican writer-director Issa López, a ten-year-old girl whose mother has been murdered by a local drug cartel joins a street gang of similarly orphaned kids; they launch a resistance campaign, and much to the cartel's disadvantage, their Mexican village teems with as many specters as sicarios. The ghosts in this story, all victims of the drug war, oscillate between frightening and comforting; they appear as bloody lines crossing rooms or as childlike drawings that leap out of city walls, and though they support the kids against the cartel, they also symbolize the grief and trauma the kids may never shake (the spirit of the girl's slain mother is a doleful presence throughout). López's fable has already drawn comparisons to Guillermo del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth (2006) but has a phantasmagoric energy and modern urgency all its own. In Spanish with subtitles.

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