DVD Review: Robert Rodriguez Presents CURANDERO – DAWN OF THE DEMON


Grindhouse god, Robert Rodriguez writes and produces this Spanish language curiosity. Think of a low budget feature combination of Millennium meets The X-Files by way of ‘CSI: Mexico’. It never quite gels as a concept, but this low budget thriller has enough gore and crazy little moments to pass 90 minutes.

A Curandero is a faith healer that cleanses and purifies souls and…well, pretty much anything. Carlos Gallardo (El Mariachi) plays the title character – he’s the hero of Eduardo Rodriguez’s (no relation to Robert) film who is brought in to cleanse a Mexico City police station after an evil cult leader has cast a hex on it. He teams up with Magdalena (Gizeht Galatea), a glammed up special agent to track down said Occultist. All sorts of weirdness happens throughout the course of Curadero’s running time, from demonic possession to ad-hoc heart surgery.

Rodriguez’s script is totally preposterous, lacking any sort of connection to real world logic. However, the Rodriguez’s (Eduardo) film has copious amounts of blood and gore to paper over such faults. There’s also a pretty decent shootout at the midway point, which should have been saved for the film’s climax. It’s as if Rodriguez (Robert) had a few movie ideas lying around and he decided to throw them all together into one script. They don’t all come together, but I’ve seen worse.

Curandero: Dawn of The Demon’s low budget betrays its concept. However, this cheapie horror-thriller moves along at a solid pace, which helps to cover over the film’s (many) logic leaps.

Special Features

A relaxed and casual commentary from Eduardo Rodriguez and director of photography Jaime Reynoso.