Contracted is an American horror film that… isn’t all that horrific. The film follows Sam (Najarra Townsend), a young lesbian desperately in denial over the dissolution of her relationship. At her best friend’s party, Sam gets drunk and has a one-night stand with a mysterious man. However, the next morning, she begins to show signs of physical distress amidst a police inquiry relating to the man. As the hours and days pass, Sam’s body begins to decay and transform, causing her friends to fear for her… and their own lives when she begins to lash out at them.
It’s never outright stated what afflicted Sam, but it’s kind of a mix between zombification and vampification. Ultimately, it’s not what affected her that matters, but the message itself. Simply put, Contracted seemed like a Lifetime movie expressing the earth-shattering effects of unprotected sex/one night stands. With this angle on the film, you can almost forgive the TV movie-like quality, both in terms of cinematography and acting. Otherwise, pass on it, because all you’ll contract will be a dose of boredom.
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Director: Eric England
Release Date: October 11, 2013 (CIFF)