Hi, everyone. Film Corner is back after a bit of a break.
Quarantine has been increasingly feeling like the same day getting repeated over and over, and I'm sure a lot of you would be feeling the same. For most of us, it's been the same monotony of staring at screens all day, in some capacity or the other. Thus, to compensate for this overwhelming lack of action in our lives, here I am to recommend something that is the polar opposite of that. You will, of course, need a screen to watch this movie, but what is human nature without its contradictions. But I digress.
Upgrade (2018), written and directed by Leigh Whannell (of Saw fame), and starring Logan Marshall-Green, is a refreshingly smart addition to both the action and Sci-Fi genres. Set in a not-so-distant future, where everything is automated, the film centres around Grey Trace (Marshall-Green) is a man who still to cling on to the past (a time when people still did things with their own hands; a technophobe, if you will). However, due to a cruel twist of fate, he is left paralysed after being the victim of a violent mugging. He also loses his wife, Asha (Melanie Vallejo) in the attack. Asha is an employee in a tech company. Might that have something to do with the attack? An eccentric billionaire, Erron Keen (Harrison Gilbertson) helps Grey get control of his body back with the help of a special computer chip implant in his body. With the police not being of much help, Grey slowly comes around to the realization that he might be able to use his new computer-powered body to avenge the death of his wife, and solve the mystery behind the attack.
It might sound like a cliched revenge action flick, but Upgrade is so much more than just that. The screenplay is genuinely smart, and keeps you hooked until the very end, where you might just be surprised. (I’m not saying anything.) The acting is good, and the cinematographer has a lot of fun with the whole cyberpunk-vibe of this future utopia (read: dystopia?). Made on a budget of just $3 million, Upgrade shows that you don’t need a huge budget for good CGI-the graphics and special effects are absolutely top notch.
Upgrade is not going to pull up any trees in the history of cinema, but it is extremely fun, and shows why Leigh Whannell is a very significant writer-director in today’s popular culture.
If you’re looking for something to make your boring days a little more exciting, might I suggest this slick, fast-paced Sci-Fi actioner.
Content Warning: The film is extremely violent, so watch it at your own discretion.
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