“Culture Shock”: A dark turn on the American Dream

By Carina Lopez ’20

The making of it

“Culture Shock” is one of 12 super-sized episodes on Hulu’s horror series “Into the Dark” one of which an episode is released every month. Given the background of the episode, “Culture shock” was released on July 4. It was, also, written and directed by Gigi Saul Guerrero who went on to cast stars like actress Martha Higareda, actor Sal Lopez, actress Barbara Crampton, and among others.


It all begins with Marisol’s American dream. A dream where she illegally crosses the Mexican-American border. Not only does Marisol fail miserably, but she becomes pregnant from a rape experience. Leaving her dwelling on her second attempt to cross with a child. 

For her second attempt, she opts out for the “Coyote” option. This is a person who you pay to get you across the border illegally. Just like her first attempt, it does not go as planned, and the audience is left with nothing but a black screen.

Next thing we know, Marisol wakes up in a bed glammed head to toe: wearing a dress with her hair and makeup done. However, one thing was missing: the baby in her stomach. That’s not the end she has also somehow ended up in a 1950’s American suburb, and Marisol is left with one thing in her mind: how does she get out?

Skip or watch?

Although this movie does deluge on scary and ongoing social-political issues, it is definitely worth the watch. Issues like the caravan of immigrants and shootings. Even though the focus is on Immigration, the sole mention of others is a great thing, as it brings awareness. Yes, you may not agree with all aspects of the movie, but it is certainly worthwhile to get a different perspective. Especially, if that perspective is in a suspense and trippy kind of way. Meaning with the eerie music, weird jump cuts, and close-ups. The mix of Spanish and English also definitely adds more to the movie, as it gives insight to Maria’s culture, and I as a Latina enjoy the representation of how I, a Mexican, actually looks. This is a very interesting spin on a horror film. I for one very much enjoy it.

 Overall, I would recommend the film. I will rewatch this for sure, and it is worth almost two hours. The mix of Spanish and English also definitely adds to the whole culture aspect. 

  • Hulu
  • MA
  • Horror/Thriller
  • 1hr 31 minutes