Director/writer Leigh Whannell presents a vision of a Utopian future where technology is supremely ubiquitous. In that future, technophobe Grey Trace (Logan Marshall-Green) embraces an experimental computer chip implant named STEM after a mugging incident leaves him paralyzed and his wife dead. STEM proves to possess its own agency, making for an unpredictable ally in Trace’s vendetta.
Grey Trace: Stem, he’s got a knife!
Stem: [calmly] I see that. We have a knife, too.
[Grey, under Stem’s control, takes the knife from the assailant and stabs him]
Grey Trace: See, you thought I was a cripple but you didn’t know that I’m a ninja.
Stem: While I am state of the art, I am not a ninja.
Stem: It does not make sense that humans deliberately malfunction.
Grey Trace: Yeah, that’s because your memories are filled with ones and zeros, pal, and our memories are filled with every fuck-up we’ve ever made.
Grey Trace: Stem, what do you think I should do?
Stem: Move Grey!
Stem: You now have full control again, Grey.
Stem: I cannot allow us to be killed.
Grey Trace: [while being choked] Help!
Stem: I need your permission to operate independently.
Grey Trace: Permission granted.
[Stem takes control and fights the assailant]