A Communist Brainwashed My Daughter

A satire about Cuban machismo, middle-school drama, and environmental messaging through connected vignettes: a frustrated Miami science teacher forces apathetic students to pick up litter in detention, the drama those students actually care about, and an overworked Cuban father who challenges the teacher. One day of tension building, bursting, and bursting some more from the perspectives of the teacher, the student, and her father.

Mel Brooks meets Pedro Almodovar, written by Greta Thunberg and a dozen telenovela writers.

  • Daniel Lago
  • Daniel Lago
  • Daniel Lago
  • Manuel Delgadillo
  • Daniel Lago
    Cinematographer (Camera/Grip/Electric Department)
  • Daniel Lago
    Post-Production (Editor, Composer, Sound Mixer, Animator, SFX)
  • Daniel Lago
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 40 minutes 37 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    September 28, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    11,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    English, Spanish
  • Shooting Format:
    Medium Format (GFX 100s)
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Daniel Lago

By day, I counsel adolescents and teens. By night, I seek counseling from my girlfriend and our two cats. I visit my family almost daily, where I referee my elderly parents (shrinks call it “triangulation”) and bond with my older brother over tabletop RPGs, HBO shows, and mid-afternoon strolls. I swear to hold mature goals like home ownership, but I’m often more concerned about how to reconcile environmental stewardship (a moral imperative), consumer waste, and the abrasiveness of your average Cuban into a cohesive film.

Ever the sourpuss, I scowl at my fellow Miamian for cutting me off and leaving a plume of diesel fumes. As a critic of contemporary Cuban etiquette, I’m also known to talk too loud and appreciate crass Cuban humor. Having lived nearly all my life in Hialeah, I’ve been making shoestring films for half my life where I’ve done every job on set and in post-production. I gave up life as a union camera assistant for more time: I’m determined to make a film that represents Hialeah in earnest, no matter how many Santeros curse me.

I also enjoy handtool woodworking, gardening, and crashing my normally healthy diet with weekly Pizza Hut (#1 chain pizza).

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

This is a DIY feature film made for under 11k, under two years, with over two dozen cast members, and with a three-person skeleton crew (all Latino). Not a single day went over five hours. I was the director/writer/producer/actor, and also served as cinematographer (and gaffer/key grip), the entire art department, and the entire post-production department. Yes, I need a vacation, and yes, I will never perform that many roles on a feature film again.

And yet, I'm open to counseling anyone on the ins-and-outs about how I made a feature under these self-imposed conditions.

4K Trailer: https://youtu.be/Ct0kEveHC1I?si=K8o29hf0J55gKsl-