‘Dys-’: You can’t have my body!

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Welcome to the isolated little world that belongs to Sam and Eva Marsh. A formerly happy married couple, the tension and bitterness and frustration between them is now palpable, especially when strange viral occurrences begin in the city and they’re forced to hole up together to avoid them.

It’s pretty obvious that whatever’s left of Sam and Eva’s marriage should have been absolved awhile ago. Eva was a model and her oh so helpful mother encouraged that, even to the point of trying to counsel Eva against having a child once the pregnancy was discovered. Sam (Alex Goldrich) is a professor of photography, and somewhere around the time Eva discovered she was carrying, got a job offer to do some really spiffy shoots in New York. Sam wants Eva (Shannon Lark) to stay here at home while he goes off working, and while Sam is gone, Eva has a miscarriage. Or at least, that what she tells Sam.

That’s actually a pretty far cry from the truth, and one other person knows the actual truth – Sam’s friend James (Dega Lazare), who got the Marshes their apartment down the hall from his own. Sam had called James to check on Eva while he was gone, especially after a frightening phone call Eva made to Sam first, and what James finds on the floor of the Marsh bathroom is a far cry from anything sane. Bearing in mind, this was in the past and no viral outbreak was sweeping the city causing the people to go mad and attack each-other, oh no, Eva did that all on her own. With James firmly threatened to secrecy, Eva carefully preserves the evidence and attempts to go back to some kind of life afterward, even looking for an eye-rolling secretarial job.

But plague, a viral outbreak, some manner of nasty that turns humans into monsters and against each-other, has now swept the city and Sam has to protect his own little kingdom, come hell or high water. Duct tape is the eternal answer!

And religion too. Both in giant heaping doses and a whole bunch of confrontations between Sam and Eva later, it looks like the Marsh marriage question has been settled and Eva can move on to bloodier pastures. But always beware the person who was nuts before the city went bugshit-insane.

Clearly Dys- is short for dysfunctional, and every single last character in the movie certainly is. I think deranged might actually be a better word for both Eva and Sam, for different reasons, but still. The story might be a shade muddled and the pacing might need work, but the body-horror and psychological terror of Dys- is pretty damn good.

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