JESUS SHOWS YOU THE WAY TO THE HIGHWAY

 

CIA Agents Palmer and Gagano are tasked with the mission of destroying a computer virus called “Soviet Union”. They enter the system using VR but the mission turns into a trap. Billed as a “WTF Thriller” and “The Matrix on Acid”, Llansó’s (Crumbs, 2015) second feature steeps Afrofuturism in the retro aesthetics of Cold-War spy thrillers and B-movie actioners. Cloaked in this explosion of pop-cultural nostalgia, Jesus Shows You the Way to the Highway ruminates about today’s reality – mediated, simulated and just as baffling as the film’s multicultural space-time conundrum. There’s a kung-fu-kicking Afro Batman, paper thin Robert Redford and Richard Pryor, a hammer-and-sickle-wielding virtual Stalin and, of course, there’s Jesus to show us the way. Winner of Imaging the Future Award at Neuchâtel Fantastic Film Festival and Audience Award at Montreal’s Fantasia.

“Truly original artistic voices are few and far between. When it comes to contemporary genre cinema, a few innovators come to mind when one thinks about the 21st century. Filmmakers like Khavn from the Phillippines, Q from India, Sono Sion and Ujicha from Japan, and Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani from Belgium have carved their own paths through a cinema jungle filled with overwhelmingly similar material. A new voice has emerged to join those ranks over the last few years, Miguel Llansó, a filmmaker whose low budget afro-futurist science-fiction film Crumbs surprised the festival circuit a few years ago. Now Llansó is back with his second feature, Jesus Shows You the Way to the Highway, and it is every bit as bizarre and unique as one might hope. /…/ Jesus Shows You the Way to the Highway is everything the adventurous film fan is looking for. It is complex, original, fun, funny, and unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.”
– J Hurtado, Screen Anarchy

“Miguel Llansó’s second feature is an inspired mashup of vintage exploitation tropes and pure absurdism. /…/ The resulting concoction is a witch’s brew of cheap 1960s European 007 knockoffs, ’70s Filipino exploitation cinema, vintage kung fu pics, retro TV sci-fi cheese and lucha libre-type masked machismo, as well as myriad other elements, filtered through a narrative framework of Cold War anxiety and Afrofuturist techno-fantasy. /…/ those with a simpatico arcane pop-cultural taste for giddy absurdism will find Jesus Shows You the Way to the Highway as delightfully nonsensical as its inspired title. /…/ In its sheer perversity, this Rube Goldbergian movie is more drolly amusing than laugh-out-loud funny. But it is unquestionably not quite like anything else before it (excepting perhaps Crumbs), and that’s a virtue from which cult followings are born.”
– Dennis Harvey, Variety

 

JESUS SHOWS YOU THE WAY TO THE HIGHWAY
Spain/Estonia/Ethiopia/Latvia/Romania/UK, 2019, DCP, 1.85, colour, 82′, in English

directed by Miguel Llansó
written by Miguel Llansó
cinematography Israel Seoane, Erik Põllumaa, Michal Babinec
editing Velasco Broca
music Bill Dixon
vfx design Paddy Eason
cast Daniel Tadesse Gagano, Agustín Mateo, Guillermo Llansó, Gerda-Anette Allikas, Lauri Lagle, Iveta Pole, Solomon Tashe, Carlo Pironti, Rene Köster
produced by Sergio Uguet de Resayre (Lanzadera Films), Meseret Argaw, Miguel Llansó, Kristjan Pütsep, Guna Stahovska, Daniel Taye Workou, Andy Starke, Cristian Nicolescu