• by Wes Singleton

Upgrade, B


Rated R, 95 minutes

"Upgrade" is one of the most original science-fiction thrillers of the year, and it comes from an interesting source. It's directed and written by Leigh Whannell, creator of the "Saw" and "Insidious" horror film series. I went into this expecting a traditional horror film, but it's a well-crafted, dark and occasionally thought-provoking revenge thriller that's equal parts "Deathwish" and "Six Million Dollar Man."

A brutal mugging leaves a mechanic named Grey (Logan Marshall-Green) a paraplegic. But he's offered another chance at life with an artificial implant called STEM that's controlled by a billionaire inventor (Harrison Gilbertson); STEM provides him with superhuman strength and the power to walk. The only thing, Grey uses it to exact revenge on the guys who left him a paralyzed and his wife dead.

Disturbing yet highly entertaining, it's predictable down the stretch but it's also highly original and yes, that ending leaves it open for more. This low-budget thriller is a pleasant surprise and worth a look.


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