Upgrade ★★★★

One of the highly anticipated films of FrightFest 2018 was Leigh Whannell's new Sci-Fi universe in the shape of UPGRADE. Whannell was present for the screening and provided a fascinating FAQ after the film to cover a nice range of questions from the similarities to Tom Hardy that Logan Marshall-Green possesses and some tidbits on filming the action sequences.

The film itself was fast, furious and extremely engaging. It lifted itself off the ground right away and stayed at a great height throughout. It's action scenes never dull and its script humorous and interesting. There may be familiar influences that shape the film but it stands up on its own two feet while paying its respects to the likes of TERMINATOR and ROBOCOP.

The world the film is set in looks beautiful. Its cars seem scarily realistic for the future and the technology could only be a stone's throw away from realism. The casting of Marshall-Green proves to be a good choice from the offset. Marshall-Green's character, Grey Trace, is likeable and interesting, the character is well rounded and this helped me fully engage. I last saw Marshall-Green in THE INVITATION which was a film I enjoyed immensely and I had no idea it was the same actor until I checked IMDB later. Big things ahead I imagine.

Whannell has a knack of creating dark urban worlds full of corrupt, dangerous and fascinating storylines and characters, adding UPGRADE to the same bookshelf as SAW and INSIDIOUS is an impressive feat that can only cement him as a modern great.

A dark action fantasy sci-fi that packs a punch with the violence and humour, should be up any genre fans street and I really hope this receives lots of love.

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