MADRES (2021) Reviews and overview of Blumhouse-Amazon horror movie

 

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Madres is a 2021 American horror film in which a migrant couple experience strange symptoms and terrifying visions in a farming community.

The movie is part of the ‘Welcome to the Blumhouse‘ series of four horror films that will be shown on Amazon Prime in October 2021, the others being Bingo Hell; Black as Night and The Manor.

Directed by Ryan Zaragoza – making his feature debut – from a screenplay co-written by Marcella Ochoa and Mario Miscione. Executive produced by Jason Blum, Jeremy Gold, Marci Wiseman, Lisa Bruce, Sanjay Sharma and Matthew Myers.

The Blumhouse TV-Amazon Studios co-production stars Tenoch Huerta, Ariana Guerra, Evelyn Gonzalez, Kerry Cahill and Elpidia Carrillo.

Plot:

Beto (Tenoch Huerta) and Diana (Ariana Guerra), a young Mexican-American couple expecting their first child, move to a small town in 1970’s California where Beto has been offered a job managing a farm.

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Isolated from the community and plagued by confusing nightmares, Diana explores the rundown company ranch where they reside, finding a grisly talisman and a box containing the belongings of the previous residents. Her discoveries will lead her to a truth that is stranger and more terrifying than she could have possibly imagined…

Reviews:

” …a film that feels like it just never really gets started, Madres has a real-life message to get across about enforced sterilisation of women, but in terms of whatever’s going on with the script, it doesn’t translate to a horror film whatsoever. It would’ve served much better as a regular drama.” DVD Fever

“While it finally swerves away from the agricultural question, Madres never loses a strong underpinning of social conscience that seeps into director Ryan Zaragoza’s considered shots. It has a rich chromatic palette, and its delicate transitions stand out, too – between burgeoning bellies and swelling fruits, empty crates and bare cots.” The Guardian

“Just when I found myself thinking that Madres was falling into the Welcome to the Blumhouse’-trap of being too long, it got back on track. For once, the story in this movie did need the runtime it has […] has all the making of a great horror movie. Especially since this one actually really lives up to the “based on a true story” label. And what a scary and horrific story it is!” Heaven of Horror

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Madres is structured well, and the script from Mario Miscione and Marcella Ochoa has a lot to say. It gets muddled down significantly with talks of curses and spooky necklaces (and would have probably been better served as a drama), but Madres is still passable entertainment with that strong message lying just below the surface.” Josh at the Movies

“A subdued score and some by-the-book camerawork can make this urgent story drag, but what it lacks in sting it makes up for with an original script (by Marcella Ochoa and Mario Miscione) and a ferociously pregnant protagonist who would make the Fargo character Marge Gunderson proud.” The New York Times

Madres is ultimately more of a message movie than you’re probably expecting, complete with on-screen text at the end more commonly seen in documentaries and biopics […] The problem, as is so often the case, is that Madres won’t send chills down your spine or make the hair on your arms stand up — even if it does teach you more than its scarier counterparts ever attempt to.” Variety

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Release:

Madres will be available for streaming via Amazon Prime on October 8, 2021.

Cast and characters (alphabetical):

Jason Bayle … Doctor Nelson
Betsy Borrego … Pregnant Women
Kerry Cahill … Nurse Carol
Elpidia Carrillo … Anita
Sam Fisicaro … Woman
Joseph Garcia … Tomas
Evelyn Gonzalez … Marisol
Ariana Guerra … Diana
Tenoch Huerta … Beto
Robert Larriviere … Doctor Bell
Ashleigh Lewis … Nurse Molly
René Mena … Rafael Ernesto
Harlon Miller … Man
Leydi Morales … Rosa
Gustavo Munoz … Rafael
Jennifer Patino … Veronica
Amelia Rico … Gabriela
Sharon Elizabeth Smith … Receptionist
Britton Webb … Man
Rachel Whitman Groves … Woman

Technical details:

83 minutes

Teaser:

Trailer:

Interview with Ariana Guerra:

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