La Leyenda del Chupacabras

La Leyenda del Chupacabras

2016, PG, 81 min. Directed by Alberto Rodriguez. Voices by Benny Mendoza, Mayté Cordero, Emilio Treviño, Eduardo España, Laura González.

REVIEWED By Marjorie Baumgarten, Fri., Oct. 21, 2016

The fourth in a series of animated Leyenda films from Mexico’s Anima Estudios, La Leyenda del Chupacabras aims at young and adult viewers alike. However, I suspect most children will find many frightening moments in this dark (both dramatically and visually) tale, which threatens characters with death and creates scary images of beady-eyed chupacabras and other dangers. Plus, non-Spanish-speaking kids will have to be able to read subtitles in order to follow along. Or maybe not, since coherence isn’t one of this movie’s best attributes.

The movie opens abruptly, almost causing the viewer to think that it’s leading off with the wrong reel. The movie tracks the adventure of young Leo San Juan (Mendoza), who awakes among some Mexican rebels who are opposed to the Spanish Royal Army. Soon imprisoned by the Spaniards who plan to execute them, Leo and the rebels discover that they could also be annihilated by the legendary chupacabras. Meanwhile, two alebrijes (clown-colored fantastical creatures seen in previous Leyenda films) gab, and a couple of magical flying girls interact with Leo. One of them babbles about Facebook and shopping malls, making the time frame of the movie more confusing than ever. Nevertheless, the animation is handsome, and shows some nice creative flourishes.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Films
Wild Nights With Emily
Molly Shannon breaks the myth of the staid Emily Dickinson with this vibrant biopic

Josh Kupecki, April 19, 2019

The end of the world becomes a powerful, music-driven metaphor for grief, loss, and healing

Richard Whittaker, April 19, 2019

More by Marjorie Baumgarten
Chilly nature documentary has a cuddly heart that's perfect for young animal lovers

April 19, 2019

The Chaperone
The fascinating true story of Louise Brooks falls out of focus in this anachronistic fiction

April 12, 2019


La Leyenda del Chupacabras, Alberto Rodriguez

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle