Satanic Hispanics (2022)

“Satanic Hispanics” really is an experiment that I want to see more of. Not only is it a great horror film, but it’s also a pretty great horror anthology that implements the Latin folklore very well and creatively. It’s an admirably ambitious film one packed with so much talent in front of and behind the camera, and it might even spark some interest by horror fans to delve deeper in to the Latin folklore and monsters. “Satanic Hispanics” is an anthology of five short films from some of the leading Latin filmmakers in the horror genre. The cast in each short are predominantly Latin with a slew of stellar supporting actors and actresses alike.

In Mike Mendez’s wrap around segment (from a script by Alejandro Mendez) entitled “The Traveler” police raid a house in El Paso, and a slew of dead Latinos, with only one survivor. He’s known as The Traveler, played with great self awareness by Efren Ramirez. When they take him to the station for questioning, he tells them those lands are full of magic and talks about the horrors he’s encountered in his long time on this earth. He then spins four tales about portals to other worlds, mythical creatures, demons and the undead–stories about Latin American legends.

Written and directed by Demian Rugna, “Tambien Lo Vi” is a creepy and unnerving story of Gustavo (Demián Salomón basically carries this short), a savant who competes in Rubic’s Cube solving tournaments. Under pressure by his sister to win big prize money, he accidentally a way to see into the afterlife that involves patterns around him. “El Vampiro” by director Eduardo Sanchez and writer Adam Cesare is the humorous tale of a vampire (Hemky Madera, who is just great) stalking victims on Halloween, who forgot to allow for Daylight Savings Time when he was planning his night out. This is a very light hearted albeit well made short with a pretty emotional ending that closes on a funny note.

Going for a more dire tone, “Nahules,” co-written by Shadan Saul and Raynor Shima, and directed by Gigi Saul Guerrero is about a man (played by Ari Gallegos) who finds himself on the wrong side of a powerful witch (Gabriela Ruíz is just terrifying) and her followers. My favorite though is “Hammer of Zanzibar” by director Alejandro Brugués and writer Lino K. Villa. This segment opts for more horror comedy as Jonah Ray Rodrigues plays Malcolm, who suspects that his ex-girlfriend Amy may be possessed by a demon, a powerful demon named King Zombie. He comes prepared though with the “Hammer of Zanzabar” which he acquires from a weird seller (Jacob Vargas) of occult weaponry.

This is a great short to close out on as the mix of comedy and horror is great, and Rodrigues delivers a hilarious original song you’ll be singing long after the movie ends. “Satanic Hispanics” is such a great and unique horror anthology complimented by the massive cast and excellent creative team all of whom mix so many interesting themes about the occult, religion, and folklore seamlessly. My fingers are crossed for a sequel.

Exclusively in Theaters September 14th.