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January 5th, 2024 | Posted by pftq in Stories | #
Dreamt I watched this whole thing on TV as a movie...
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A man tries to save an actress/influencer friend from a dystopian psychological ward.  The influencer normally has a very active online presence but recently went missing and silent from social media.  The man finds her at the ward after much detective work, schedules a visit, but she looks different, disfigured, etc but clearly still her.  When the man tries to talk to her, she is confused, doesn't speak, has a blank expression, and does not seem to recognize any of her online profiles/content he shows her on his phone.  It becomes apparent she's either drugged out or mentally incapacitated / disabled.

He breaks her out only for them to both get caught and separated.  He gets held in a separate room and questioned by doctors.  He demands they release her and that he'll expose them, but they seem relatively unphased and largely ignore him.  

There is a time skip and fade to a common area of the ward, where the man is now sitting in the corner amongst all other patients in the ward including the influencer.  No one is talking though (because they're all mentally disabled).  All the patients have the same blank expression and are doing trivial things (eating, games, drawing, etc), except the man sitting in the corner with his head resting in his hands.  The man is deep in thought to himself.  He goes up to the window and pounds it, shouting they can't keep him here and that he'll expose them.

One night, he finally manages to get a hold of a phone in the lobby and tries to call the police/detective, directs them to look into all the notes and evidence he collected at the start of the movie in a woodshed in the middle of the forest.  The movie is slightly hopeful here, as he finally gets in touch with the outside world and just has to wait.

A few nights later, he calls the same detective, but the detective tells him they went to the woodshed and just found insane ramblings on the notes.  The man says that's not possible because he meticulously put together evidence across social media media, news articles, etc to show a trail of the social media influencer going missing and leading to the ward he's at.  They tell him there is no such person as the social media influencer, never was and nothing exists online.  They hang up on him, and the phone goes cold.

He eventually sneaks out one night and finds the main doctor operating some strange Frankenstein-ish experiment with a different patient lying on a hospital bed.  The patient has on a lot of metal head gear as if being remote-controlled.  The man hesitates, then comes out of hiding to try to save this patient.  The main doctor is again unphased like other staff, faces the man calmly, and points a remote control at him, pressing a button.  The man shouts that that won't work him, as he's not a patient, but he suddenly locks up while still conscious.  The lighting of the whole movie changes from dark and moody to bright and home-video quality, and the man is revealed to also be disfigured.  The man is panicking at first and yelling but slowly becomes subdued, quiet, loses his sense of reality as the scene fades out.

The end of the movie reveals him in the same common area of the ward, now with a blank expression similar to all other patients and also doing trivial things.  The camera cuts to outside the room from a window, with one of the doctors taking notes.  The doctor comments that while their brain-interface treatment was largely a success, they can't seem to avoid having the subject antagonize and attack the ward.
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