It’s always lovely to discover myths and legends of local folklore through a nice movie. It’s what happened to many when they recently watched Troll and learned about the myth in Norway, or the series Shahmaran based on the Turkish legend. In 2023, Netflix released Chupa, a movie by Jonás Cuarón (the son of the famous Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón): the film tells the story of a young boy, Alex, who visits his relatives in Mexico and learns about the legend of the chupacabra, a mythical creature that kills animals. For many, chupacabras don’t exist, but that’s not what we’ll learn in the movie. But are chupacabras real in Mexico? What are they, and what’s the meaning of this Spanish word? Let’s discover everything in this article.
You can watch the official trailer for Chupa here on Youtube.
Chupa movie: what is a chupacabra? Are they real?
The Chupacabra is a legendary creature that is said to inhabit parts of the Americas, particularly in Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the United States. “Chupacabra” is a Spanish word made of “chupa” (to suck) and “cabra” (which means goat). Therefore, the name “Chupacabra” means “goat-sucker” in Spanish, as the creature is believed to attack and drink the blood of livestock, especially goats.
In the movie, a team of scientists is looking for the real chupacabras. Most people don’t believe they exist, but the scientist is sure they are real, as he saw them, and he also collected feathers and claws belonging to them. We find out that Alex’s grandfather, Chava, is hiding a baby chupacabra, protecting him from the scientist who wants to make money with it. Alex familiarizes himself with the creature and names it Chupa. Therefore, according to the movie, chupacabras are real. But is it true?
In the real world, descriptions of the Chupacabra vary, but it is often described as a reptilian or canine-like creature with spines or quills running down its back. Some witnesses claim that it has wings or can fly, while others say it moves on four legs. But the truth is that there is no scientific evidence to support the existence of the Chupacabra. Someone believed in them, and in the past, some people even thought they caught a chupacabra on camera, as this article explains. But the most straightforward explanation is that they are coyotes that lost part of their hair because of diseases like mange. National Geographic explained everything very clearly in 2010.
The Chupa is not real, then. But it represents a cute, sweet creature that can perfectly fit the role of the protagonist in a dreamy movie like the one released on Netflix. Kids still have the freedom of choice: what about you, do you believe a chupa really exists?