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SXSW Film Review: Who Among Us (2020)

Who Among Us (2020) is a short film set in a dystopian future. Directed by Abhi Prasad and Rebecca Kahn, this short film stars Terry He, Susana Borosic and Kingsley Ngadi. In a game show where one android hides among a group of humans, contestant Seven (Borosic) must prove that she is in fact human.

The easiest comparison that can be made for this short film is the TV series Black Mirror, but that is really a compliment that for a small-budget short film, it manages to have the same tone and impact without feeling like a copy. The story is unique to itself, presenting a fun subject matter and one that may become relevant within the next century or so. The editing has fun with this subject matter, allowing for quick cuts, extra inserts and pop-ups appearing on the screen to capture the online spirit, which helps enhance the overall film.

The performances overall are fantastic from all three actors, but the stand out is Susana Borosic who is given a majority of the narrative and drama of the story to carry. She is asked to do a lot in this short time, particularly emotionally as the audience is left figuring out if she is human or an android. Whilst I would have loved to have seen more from Kingsley Ngadi’s Drake here, I also loved what Terry He brought to the host, Dr. Nadio and the eccentric energy that radiated off of him.

Given the budget of this being an independent short film, the team did overall well with the cinematography and editing of the film. Whilst I would have liked to have seen the set look cleaner and more professional, the creative choices behind the set design are strong and have fantastic potential. I love the colour choices and the idea of the entrance with the use of smoke behind the contestants, adding further drama to the narrative.

The one main issue with the story ends up being the predictability of the narrative. The whole idea of the short film is to guess which person is the android, and unfortunately, this was easy to guess within the first few minutes of the short film. Whilst the script is clever in the story and what the message is going for, figuring out who the android is before the reveal takes away from the impact it could have had otherwise.

For those who are fans of the Black Mirror formula and the presentation of a dystopian universe, this film will be right up your street. With an intriguing concept, some fantastic stylistic choices and a dark tone that I thoroughly enjoyed seeing, this makes for a well-made short film by everyone involved. Whilst the ending can feel predictable, this is still an engaging one-off story that utilises the most of the format.


Want to check out Who Among Us? You can do so on YouTube: CLICK HERE

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