CREDIT: Shudder/YouTube Screenshot

Starring: Paola Lara, Juan Ramón López, Hanssel Casillas

Director: Issa López

Running Time: 83 Minutes

Rating: Unrated (I’d Peg it at a PG-13 for Violence That’s Not Too Graphic)

Release Date: August 21, 2019 (New York)/August 23, 2019 (Los Angeles and Toronto)

After her mother is murdered, little Estrella (Paola Lara) joins up with a group of boys as they run through the streets of Mexico to avoid the clutches of the local drug cartel. Also hot on Estrella’s tail is a streak of blood that runs along the floor and up the wall whenever she is stuck in a corner. It turns out that the ever-present threat of drug violence is paired with a mysterious supernatural presence that is more existentially unnerving than it is especially deadly. From my vantage point, that otherworldliness weirdly seemed like a small bit of comfort for Estrella. A dark fantasy world is suitably spooky when a child’s base reality is safe and secure, but when normal is filled with angry, gun-toting adults, the fantasy is the realm of security.

Tigers Are Not Afraid is Recommended If You Like: Gritty fantastical realism

Grade: 3 out of 5 Wishes