We prize the unusual and unique above almost all else around these parts so it carries a certain kind of weight when I say that there is no director in the world today quite like Miguel Llanso. But I say so happily because there really, really is no director in the world today quite like Miguel Llanso.
Originally hailing from Spain, Llanso is best known internationally as the director of Crumbs, the acclaimed – and very bizarre – science fiction film he shot and produced in Ethiopia. And if you thought Crumbs was a bit of an odd experience, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
Llanso is hard at work now on his next feature, one that will shoot in Estonia, Spain and – yes – Ethiopia. Titled Jesus Shows You The Way To The Highway the story features elements of dimensional travel, Afro-futurism, more than a little bit of a nod to Philip K Dick, a drug addicted super hero knock off and the floating head of Stalin blasting laser beams from his eyes. Um … yes, please?
It’s 2035 and Tallinn, now a megalopolis, is managed by an ubiquitous computer program called Psychobook. Undercover agents Gagano and his boss Palmer Eldritch are tasked with protecting psychobook from any and all threats.
When a dangerous virus called “Soviet Union” is detected within psychobook, the agents are assigned the mission to destroy it. During the mission, when accidentally inhaling a strange gas-emitting substance, Gagano becomes trapped in Betta Ethiopia, a parallel reality where he is considered the true heir to the throne. As he tackles the challenge of becoming the new Emperor, a battle breaks out in Betta Ethiopia between the Prime Minister, a firm supporter of the state apparatus and Psychobook, and Reverend Roy, a sect leader who promotes the free use of the substance for truth seeking and liberation purposes. When Gagano befriends Roy Mascarone, a Jesus Christ-like figure, he will learn how to use the substance to travel within realities, knowledge that will finally lead Gagano to the ultimate truth.
Llanso has self-financed part of the shoot in Ethiopia and is now taking to Kickstarter to help raise the funds to continue and complete production. This thing is absolutely gonzo and I cannot recommend supporting it highly enough. Check out the trailer and pitch video below and support the campaign here!