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Hi All, this has been bugging me on and off for years now so I would greatly appreciate some help. I saw this movie on tv many years ago and didn’t get to finish it, that’s why I can only describe the first half of it, but I do recall clearly the beginning scene: a young boy in a playground climbing the slide, his father stands next to it with open arms, ready to catch him as he slides down, but as the boy comes down the slide his father morphs into a monstrous being and the terrified boy couldn’t stop himself from sliding ever closer to it… then a young man wakes up in his bed after the nightmare.

I also remember some plot of the movie: the young man lives with his parents in a smallish town, where life seems perfect except that people can (and do) suddenly get ill and die from (what seems to be) nothing. The town has some physical barriers around and the people believe that the world beyond their town is too contaminated to sustain life. The town also seems to have lots of signage / posters promoting some upcoming product or event called ARORA. One day the young man discovers that his town is also heavily contaminated which is why people get sick, however nobody believes his observation of the reality because they are seeing their world through some sort of in-built filter. The young man drives his car through the barriers with his good friend (or crush?), are caught by soldiers and brought to a high tech sort of corporation headquarters, where they get ‘disinfected’ and declared safe to meet the people inside. They are told that their town is a lost cause so the rosy facade has been created as some sort of palliative care, but as the people are speaking the young man realises to his horror that these people are just as affected (and decaying in front of his eyes) as his town people. The young man shouts that this reality is also not real, and punches through a (supposedly) solid concrete wall to prove his point, but all he gets is pitying looks from the people thinking he’s unwell. The young man is then told that they will make his life much more enjoyable and he wakes up in his bed again, this time with his crush as his girlfriend (or maybe even wife?). He goes to work and a advertising campaign is being organised for ARORA, the young man asks just what ARORA is, but instead of giving him an answer his colleagues just praise him for coming up with a great slogan ‘What Is ARORA?’…

AND that’s about all that I can recall. Like I said, I didn’t get to finish the movie and this is the best I could do. If anyone out there knows what this movie is or (more importantly) how the second half goes, please enlighten me. I would be very grateful, thank you.

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FOUND! The movie is called Virtual Nightmare (2000). Hope there are others that will find it enjoyable (really scared me all those years ago).