From the less eventful side of a tragic event, telling someone to move on is good, practical advice. At the same time, having the bird flipped in your face is a likely response, as well as a valid one. The reality is that while the process of “moving on” is vital in the face of tragedy, we have no right to dictate the timing. Taking that next step is the theme of Andrew Paul Montague’s short film, My Other Suit is Human.
The movie opens with Zoe (Bethany Blake) sitting on the bed of her son, Noah, who recently passed. She sits quietly with a melancholy look on her face. We next see her in the kitchen, dressed in a cardboard android costume. When her husband, Stephen (Simeon Oakes), returns home, he plays along with Zoe. As an android, Zoe’s conversation with Stephen is short, to the point, and void of emotion.
For both Zoe and Stephen, life is at a standstill. Zoe is content, though, coping with her loss. She plans to remain an android for quite some time. As is the case with films, remaining content makes for boring storytelling, so Stephen insists on confronting the issue to disastrous results.
“As an android, Zoe’s conversation with Stephen is short, to the point, and void of emotion.”
Grief is one of the most significant challenges we face as human beings. It’s unavoidable. It’s something you can’t protect yourself, or others, from, and it always changes us, rarely in a positive way. Loaded with insight, My Other Suit is Human gives us a fresh take on the subject that even I have a hard time facing, and it handles the issue with respect, even with its somewhat sci-fi interpretation.
It’s worth reserving a paragraph of this review on the costume. The android suit is incredible. Yes, it’s made of cardboard and gives off a “Marvin, the Paranoid Android” vibe. Blake is almost completely hidden in the cardboard, and its construction looks simple yet complex. Sure, it’s primarily square boxes stacked on one another, but the top of the torso is curved to create shoulders, and the android’s cardboard fingers are fully articulated. Where can I get one of these?
Overall, the 17-minute short looks beautiful. There’s a cold, distant feel created within the story, as it is set in a beautiful home by the beach. Bethany Blake and Simeon Oakes give fantastic performances with the authenticity needed to respect the themes of My Other Suit is Human. When it comes down to it, as much as you want someone to “get over it,” that’s not your call, but what you can do is simply be there when it’s time.
"…the android suit is incredible....where can I get one of these?"