The film begins in the future where people operate idolized human androids dubbed "Surrogates" to perform their life activities, with no harm coming to the operators if their surrogates are damaged or destroyed. FBI Agent Tom Greer (Bruce Willis) and his partner Agent Jennifer Peters investigate a case where two people were killed when their surrogates were destroyed, with the son of the inventor of surrogates being one of the victims.
The idea of exceeding the limits of the human body definitely applies to Surrogates. In the movie, virtually everyone controls remote bodies. It is shown that some of these bodies have enhancements that exceed the abilities of the human body, such as speed, strength, and agility. It is ironic, though, that even models which have full human-level senses cost an extraordinary amount of money in the movie. This would force a large portion of the population to use surrogate models that are less than human, and in a way, these people not only don't exceed the human body, but are presumably reduced to something even less.
Connections to Other Readings
The Girl Who Was Plugged In
This film corresponds strongly with the short story of The Girl Who Was Plugged In. Both stories possess similar concepts of humans who jack into a device and remotely control humanlike bodies, but the themes that are present vary incredibly differently from one another. Surrogates preaches against the cyborg theme, showing a strong motif of what it means to be human, and even ends with all the surrogates in the world shut down permanently. The Girl Who Was Plugged In almost preaches an opposite message initially, with the author celebrating P. Burke's liberation from her previously wretched existence into the beautiful form of Delphi. However, P. Burke herself is killed when her two personas intersect, sending a message that escaping who you are may not be for the best in the long run.
Surrogates is a movie and a situation that relates to the Winter Market. Lise in Winters Market, is already in an exoskeleton to stay alive, and in the end she even transfers her consciousness into a computer. However, if the technology from Surrogates had been available in her time, she would have been able to live a normal life, and not have to worry about her setbacks, and illness, and addiction. In a way, all of the people in Surrogates are using their own exoskeleton to stay safe from the troubles of the world.