The Kamenka Experiment by Anthony Straeger | Script Revolution

The Kamenka Experiment

Willing recruits sign up for a drugs enhancement test, but when the experiment goes wrong, dealing with problem becomes a horrific struggle of life death and morals.

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77pp

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PHARMOTECH is a company that has researched and developed military enhancement drugs
For the last 20 years PHARMOTECH International has been research and developing new
military enhancement drugs. Their latest development ‘KAMENKA 194’ is ready for its final test.
The unwitting Guinea Pigs are five carefully selected soldiers. On the promise of a substantial
reward and pension they find themselves prepared for their twenty-one day ordeal at the
military installation, Ryedale (an old cold war bunker) on the North Yorkshire Moors.

DAY 1: On arrival at the centre they are given a final medical before being escorted to the Test
Chamber. Inside, each one has a bed with a CCTV cameras and microphone directed at it.
There are no windows, they have all the rations they need and at 9:00am they enter chamber,
the door crash shut, and they are entombed. KAMENKA 194 is exchanged for the chamber’s
oxygen.

Over then next few days little happens, boredom sets in for both the watching scientist and the
subjects. By DAY 3, the hours drag by as they start to recount stories of despair and traumatic
incidents in their past. DAY 4, their conversations take a dark turn as they no longer look
directly at each other. Energetic movement has ceased and all the subjects are observed
sitting motionless. By DAY 7, one after another starts to rock back and forth mumbling and
complain the volume increases as they became more frantic and frenetic in their actions.
They have stopped sleeping.

DAY 9, the cacophony ceases as quickly as it started, the observation team are fascinated
unable to decide how much is attributed to isolation, containment, sleep deprivation or
Kamenka. Hours pass. The mood of the scientists becomes uneasy, then one-by-one they
move over to their personal CCTV and stares through the camera, and then they start
incoherent whispering, fast and faster. The scientist frantically analyse the information and
realise that each one is trying to win the trust of their observers and betray their comrades.
A decision is made to report the findings to Thatcher, the head of PharmoTech.

DAY 11, the pleading stops and the first subjects starts running and screaming the length of
the chamber, one side to the other over and over again. He shrieks at the top of his lungs for
three hours until his vocal cords are so heavily damaged that he is reduces to an occasional
squeak. A second follows suit, followed by the third. Running frenetically around the chamber,
screaming as loud as they are able. The two non-screaming captives begin to tear books apart
and smear the page with their own faeces, pasting them over every CCTV. Blacked out.
Silence. Over the next two days it is hard to believe that they can remain so quiet. Test results
show they are consuming three times the amount Kamenka than they should, the same with
Oxygen would result in death.

DAY 14, Thatcher decides ‘Contact should be made’. His right-hand man Shay reads a
pre-planned statement to the captors. No reaction, it is repeated until a voice calmly speaks:
"No-one here wants to be freed. Go away. Do not enter."

DAY 16, Shay and four well armed arrive, and upon entry are not prepared for the sight that
befalls them. The solders are on edge; they see four of the five subjects still alive, barely.
There are chunks of meat lying around, four inches of rancid water accumulated on the floor,
filled with blood and urine, the 5th dead, all that remains is a disgusting stripped skeleton.
The subjects screaming, wailing and beg for them to leave and close the door for fear of falling
asleep. Battered by the visual horror, they back out and leave. Thatcher is informed and must
see what has happened for himself.

DAY 17, Thatcher arrives with more soldiers. The gas is switched off. The soldiers charge in
and end up in a ferocious and bloody fight. Throats are cut, arms broken, smashed spleens,
complete carnage resulting in the death of two soldiers and one of the subjects. Regardless
of the suffering the subjects beg for more pain, for more gas. Eventually the soldiers and
scientist gain the upper hand, sedate the remaining three and take them away for examination.
Thatcher enters, dumbstruck by the rank smell of death, urine, blood and faeces fouling the
air. Bodies, body parts are strewn around the entire room.

The three remaining subjects are rushed to separate medical rooms in the facility. It’s a fight
to keep them alive. They whimper for the gas and demand to be kept awake at all cost. The
doctors struggle to repair their organs and bodies. Morphine is administered to one and she
flat-lines. Over a six-hour procedure the doctors and nurses endure a harrowing experience.

DAY 19, an autopsy is performed on the dead subject, muscles that is still attached to his
skeleton is badly torn, and they had numerous broken bones from the struggle. A meeting is
held between Shay, Thatcher and the scientists, it is decided that the surviving subjects
should be returned to the chamber until the best course of action can be determined.

The last two subjects struggle to stay awake, but and once the door is closed and Kamenka is
reintroduced, they relax. The scientist go about their work, checking EEG when, (though most
of the time the readings are normal) every now and each subject flat-lines. Eventually, the
second subject raises his head and makes a gut wrenching noise. Blood gushing out of every
orifice as he strains with every sinew in his body, and he shakes violently, then he stops,
smiles, closes his eyes and falls back to his bed, dead.

The panic button is hit and two soldiers join the researchers as they enter the chamber.
“Don’t cut the gas!” Screams the living subject as he tries to free himself. In that moment,
the dead subject reanimates and strangles one of the scientists. One of the soldiers draws
his gun and shoots him in the head.

The door to the chamber slams shut. Realising the failed to switch off the gas they panic and
try to smash their way out of the tomb. Furious, a soldier draws his gun and shoots the last
subject dead. Silence. From outside there is another gunshot, followed by screaming followed
by three more gunshots. The chamber is stood alone, inactive and in eerily silent. In the
darkness a whisper is heard: "So Close… So nearly free..."

All Accolades & Coverage: 

Semi-Finalist Los Angeles CineFest 2017
Best Narrative Script iHOLLY 2018
Best Horror Script iHOLLY 2018
Nominee Best Feature Script Independent Horror Movie Awards
Best Feature Script HIMPFF 2018
Winner Best Feature Script Diabolical Horror Film Festival 2018

Submitted: August 2, 2022
Last Updated: August 2, 2022

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The Writer: Anthony Straeger

Anthony Straeger is a Berlin-based actor, filmmaker and festival director. He has over thirty years of experience in the film and entertainment industry. As a festival director, he combines his knowledge and understanding of the festival business. His non-fiction book - An Independent Filmmakers Guide to Preparing and Submitting to Film Festivals - is out now. He has written scripts, articles, and presentations for film magazines and festivals. His unique take on life, the universe and everything else always shines through. Anthony has a degree in English and Drama. Plus Project Management qualification, health & safety and risk assessment qualifications. You can never be too careful... Go to bio

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