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Upgrade | 2018 | R | - 2.8.6

After an accident causes a man (Logan Marshall-Green) to become paraplegic, he is given a new lease on life by way of an untested implant that helps him control his body again. Also with Betty Gabriel, Renah Gallagher, Harrison Gilbertson, Benedict Hardie and Melanie Vallejo. Directed by Leigh Whannell. [1:35]

SEX/NUDITY 2 - A husband and his wife kiss in a self-driving car, she straddles his lap and they continue to kiss (please see the Violence/Gore category for more details). A husband and his wife kiss in a few scenes. A husband grabs for his wife's waistband and says, "I bet I can get them off" and she kisses him and walks away.
 A woman's blouse is partially unbuttoned and shows her bra and cleavage. A woman wears a low-cut top that reveals cleavage. A woman gives her adult son a sponge bath; he is wearing boxer briefs and we see his partial bare chest and abdomen, as well as legs to the thighs.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 8 - A self-driving car speeds on roads and toward construction debris while its occupants scramble to get buckled in and the car flips and crashes throwing one occupant into the windshield (we see his bloody head and face); men wearing masks pull the two occupants out of the car, shoot the woman in the chest (we see a bloody chest wound, hear her gasping and watch her as she dies) and the man is shot in the back of the neck (he does not die).
 A man shoots two people in an elevator (we see blood spray on the wall behind them and the bloody bullet holes in their chests). A man shoots two people and blood splatters. A man stabs another man in the head with a knife that is protruding from his hand (from an earlier event), and then holds a gun to his own head, shoots the gun toward a woman and misses. A man shoots a woman in the chest (we see the bloody wound).
 Two men fight throwing each other against walls, onto a table and punching each other repeatedly: one man slams the other in the face with a glass (it breaks cutting him and we see blood), one man grabs a kitchen knife and lunges at the other man who takes the knife and stabs the first man in the back and then holds him with the knife across his mouth and his knee against the man's back until we hear a crack and see the knife cut the man's mouth completely open (his neck was presumably broken and he falls dead in a pool of blood). A man fights with several men with punches and kicks and one man is zapped in the neck with a live electrical wire, and then slashed on the face repeatedly (we hear slashing and squishing and his face is covered with blood and open wounds). A man fights with two other men and then runs away; the other two chase him and one man is shot in the head (the head is cut off at the neck and we see a lot of blood and the severed head). Two men fight with punches and kicks and throws; one man slams the other onto a shard of glass in the back of his head (we hear a crunch and see blood pooling). A man holds a gun on another man; the second man sneezes and we see particles with what look like blades moving through the air and into the gunman's nostril causing him to gag and cough and collapse (we are told that the particles cut him up inside). A police detective grabs a woman and he throws her on a table where he strangles her, but stops and she tasers him causing him to collapse briefly.
 A body is shown after an autopsy and the chest is open with bloody tissue exposed along with wiring and a weapon implanted in the arm and hand. A man is shown on an operating table lying on his stomach as a drape is placed over most of his back; we see a scalpel open the flesh (blood and tissue are shown), a "chip" implant is placed on the patient's spinal cord (it glows and seems to move into place on its own) and the incision is stapled closed (we see the man with a clear bandage in several later scenes). A man pokes a pointed needle into another man's eye (we see it go in the eye). A man stabs himself in the hand and we see the knife through his hand with blood on the wound. A man cuts his finger while working on his car engine (we see blood). A man stumbles on a flight of stairs and falls, and then drags himself along a hallway, unable to control his limbs.
 A man speeds in a car and is chased by another car, they swerve through traffic and one of the cars is struck from the side and another car slams head on into the same car (the driver gets out with some blood on her head but seems OK). A mechanized arm injects a man in the hand with "night time meds" several times as the man keeps requesting more; the computer operating the arm calls an ambulance and the man is then shown in a hospital bed. We see a man intubated and with an IV in a hospital bed after a car accident. A man lies in a hospital bed with an IV in his arm after an attempted suicide. We see people with VR goggles on and they are plugged into IVs as the move around in a virtual reality world. A man loads bullets into a gun implanted in his arm and cocks it.
 A handicapped man asks people in a bar for information about who murdered his wife and the people laugh at him; one man pushes the man's wheelchair into the bathroom and dumps him on the floor before stabbing him in the leg and chest to see where he is able to feel pain (we see blood at the stab points). A man breaks into a house and searches for information about his wife's murder. A man yells when he hears a voice from inside his head and thinks someone else is in the room with him (or he's gone insane).
 A man tells a young man, "I'm looking for the off switch" (to end his life). A husband and his wife playfully argue about their reversed gender roles (she works outside the home and he "plays with cars" in his garage). A man talks about other people having meaningless lives. A man talks about shooting another man in the neck and severing his spine. A man threatens another man with a gun. A man shuts down an operating system leaving the man with the system in his body nearly incapacitated.
 A man imagines seeing his dead wife in the room with him, talking to him as if she were still alive. A man walks awkwardly and moves his arms unnaturally in a few scenes. A man watches a video of his wife's murder.
 A man vomits in a sink and we hear gagging as well as see goo. A paraplegic man gags and spits some saliva (like he is choking or unable to swallow). Several people are shown with tattoos and what looks like scarifications or implants in a few scenes.


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LANGUAGE 6 - About 15 F-words, 6 scatological terms, 5 anatomical terms, 4 mild obscenities, name-calling (uneducated insect, lab rat, unsavory, dumb, faker, insane, scumbag, kid), exclamations (shut-up, oops), 4 religious profanities (GD), 5 religious exclamations (e.g. Oh My God, Oh My Lord).


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SUBSTANCE USE - A man is shown with IVs in his arm in a couple of hospital scenes (it's not clear what the medication is), unidentified prescription medication vials are shown on a table, a mechanized arm injects a man in the hand with "night time meds" several times (please see the Violence/Gore category for more details), and a woman takes an unidentified pill. We see a Budweiser sign in a man's garage, a man drinks a beer in his garage, a man orders a whiskey in a bar and asks another man to hold it for him so he can drink, several people in a bar are shown drinking beer and other alcohol, and a woman takes a beer bottle from her husband and drinks from it.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Idealism vs. capitalism, virtual reality vs. reality, pain, fear, progress, secrets, being human, drone cameras, suicide, PTSD.

MESSAGE - Technology can be a frightening thing when put in the wrong hands.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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