I’m sure many of us dream of being a better person, but how far would you go to make that happen? In a dystopian steam-punk world, being A Better You is the new normal.
Douglas, Sean T. O Meallaigh (“Maze”, “Vikings (TV)”), is a shy and retiring person who has an eye for Olga, Hanna Mamalis (“Ripper Street (TV)”, “The Drummer And The Keeper”), the mail girl.
He’s so shy though, that he can’t pluck up the courage to ask her out. However, an opportunity arises when a Dance Extravaganza is thrown by the inventor of A Better You, and Douglas ends up with two tickets.
What’s A Better You? Think Bruce Willis in Surrogates and you aren’t far wrong. A Better You is just that, an android version of you, one that you can dial up the romance, dancing ability or charm to whatever level you like.
As Douglas finally plucks up the courage to ask Olga out, online, they arrange to meet but he begins to get cold feet and orders A Better You, A Better Him, you know what I mean.
The clone arrives and he spends some time setting him up but then, disaster. Will Douglas / The Better Douglas make it to the dance? Can he avert the disaster in front of him?
A Better You is written and directed by Eamonn Murphy (“Lost Memories (Short)”, “The Current (Short)”) and has a production quality that goes way beyond the estimated 50,000 Euros budget it had.
The steam-punk world is painted beautifully, not just in the machinery we see, but the colours Murphy uses. It’s wonderfully directed.
Meallaigh is left to carry the short and does very well indeed, playing the shy and retiring version of Douglas and the more charismatic version of Douglas with aplomb.
The film is a great metaphor for our lives today; we are always told to be better, buy this, take this, eat this, follow this person and your life will be better. Having A Better You is the ultimate for some people.