Kindness towards others is a lesson we all should learn as children, but as adults we seem to forget these lessons and can grow into bitter and cold adults who forgot the beauty found in small moments of kindness. Released in 2017 the short Film Less than Human explores themes of segregation, racism, classism, kindness and that love can make even the most troubling of times bearable, which perhaps is a lesson we could all use in 2020.
Set during the aftermath of a zombie outbreak, a cure has been found for the undead and those cured ones are kept isolated from the public for fear that the cure has not completely work. After all these are dangerous zombies, monsterous creatures who in the blink of an eye can turn on those around them and tear someone to shreds or worse infect them. The public wants to feel safe so a reporter by the name of Steve and his cameraman head into one of the cured ones camps to prove that these monsters are far too dangerous to be let out into the public.
They go out looking for the worst from this dire situation, with the intent of instilling further fear into the public. They stumble onto the front door of a gentle and kind cured one by the name of Andy and his grumpy roommate Don. Both cured ones have different outlooks on their situation. Andy is trying to make the best of a bad situation, where as Don the older the two is angry at society for causing the zombie outbreak to begin with and also upset at the life he had worked for so hard his own life being taken away from him. When his anger at the situation boils over he ends up not only scaring off the reporter, but also upsetting Andy.
This is the part of the short film which hit me hardest with everything that is going on this year. This year has sucked for a lot of people. A lot of people are not happy with how things are being dealt with as we all try to find a new sense of normal in the world. Frustration boils over into anger which causes people to lash out, because they need someone to blame all the problems in the world right now on. Whether that be a country for how they have been handling these outbreaks or people angry at the government because in trying to stop the spread people are being told they can not do what they want to do for a little while.
As bad as things are though, there has been some silver linings in these trying times even if they are little ones. Communities like my small town working together to help each other. Parents who have to work from home getting to spend more time with their children. My niece being born, and me getting to hold this new life for the first time. I might not be able to go out and socialize and go to cons, but I have made new friends online in so many communities these last few months. Got to see panels at cons I never would have been able to see otherwise because they were online (like Robin Lord Taylor at German Comic-con) and of course the absolute fun that was Fujocon!
Steve see’s what he wants to see when he goes into that apartment he went looking for a monster as proof to keep the panic going, but his cameraman saw something beautiful after Steve ran off, and yet the negative story is the one the reporter goes with. So much of the news focus’s on the negative more and more each day, so sometimes we should just turn off the news and maybe just enjoy the small moments of peace we can find each day.