Rated: R for gore, strong sexual content, nudity, and graphic language.
Genre: Supernatural Horror Thriller
Directed By: Rich Ragsdale
Running Time: 1:31
Review by: Felix Vasquez Jr.
Review Date: 10/28/07
Special Features:
The Making of The Curse of El Charro
Into Something Rich and Strange - a short film by director Rich Ragsdale
Photo gallery


It’s hard to believe a film like this could squeeze in so many stereotypes and clichés all in ninety minutes. But, it’s true. “The Curse of El Charro” is a nonsensical supernatural horror film void of any direction and pure suspense. Ragsdale’s film attempts to be as many things as possible. It features our actress having dreams that foretell a grim event, and we learn of her sister’s suicide. And then we manage to endure about a million dream sequences, all of which are featured for the excuse to demonstrate Ragsdale’s skills. Look he can do a dream sequence! Look, it resembles a silent picture! Look, she’s riding in a car but the scenery is still! How amazing! Ragsdale can never seem to decide what the hell to do with this movie. So “The Curse of El Charro” for its horribly cheesy name, features an insanely stupid concept that never tells us what the hell it’s trying to pull off. Ragsdale vainly attempts a Lynchian mode by attempting spiritual themes, and allusions to Jesus Christ, all the while hinting that perhaps we’re due for some bloodshed.

No, we’re not. A good hour into the movie, and we have to endure our utterly obnoxious heroine Maria mope around, brood, and be treated like crap, all the while she awakens from dream after dream, being stalked by some ghost, or slasher, or whatever the hell our film monster is supposed to be. Our typical virginal heroine goes on the road with an African stereotype, and a Goth stereotype to party in Arizona.  

They drive for at least a day from Los Angeles to Arizona in a beat up car and there’s really nothing else to these one dimensional caricatures. On the way, she bitches a lot about her sister who committed suicide (yes, we know she didn’t Ragsdale), gains numerous convoluted nightmares, and even stops by the typical roadside gas station where grizzled hillbillies shout about good old America, and give our characters evil eyes as if they’re aliens. It’s a wonder these bars stay open at all with that sort of warm service. After sitting through an inane musical performance from some weird rock star, Maria experiences even more warnings from her dead sister, and I was already checking out mentally. What the hell is the whole point? Ragsdale pulls us back and forth setting up this nightmarish world that’s both dank and gritty, and really only explains that all the characters are being chased by an undead Mexican freak, and is the reincarnation of El Charro’s lover. How original.

Finally when I’ve all but stopped caring, “The Curse of El Charro” turns into a slasher film where the monster has begun slicing and dicing supporting characters and characters introduced just to die a minute later in badly staged deaths filled with blatantly fake blood and limbs. Why Ragsdale introduces all these pathetic religious images, dream sequences and clichés just to tell us about an undead Mexican is still a rather confusing twist of bad storytelling, but by the time the movie was on its second half, I was begging for someone to kill these morons especially with the introduction of Tabitha Stevens for the sake of a lesbian sex scene. There’s not a single likable character in the entire cast, and that’s because there’s not a single strong actor, either.

Ragsdale attempts to be Lynch and fails miserably until he finally shows his teeth creating a limp slasher flick. But bad performances, a nonsensical story, and horrible special effects makes this nothing but a forgettable vain horror entry.



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