This is the second review of Total Recall by Terrence. You can read Micah’s review here
When one thinks of Total Recall, you’re first thought is the 1990 Schwarzenegger cult classic. What we have here is another remake that didn’t seem necessary. What was a campy action movie with charm turns into a banal run of the mill action laden snore fest.
We are introduced to a world at the end of the 21st century that has been ravaged by chemical warfare. The inhabited world is now divided into two land masses. The opulent United federation of Britain (UFB) and the Colony located on Australia which for some reason looks like China. These two land masses are connected by a transporter called The Fall. A giant elevator that goes through the core of the earth. The Science in this completely escapes me. It’s here that we meet Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell). An assembly line worker who is none to pleased with his life. He keeps having a recurring dream that strengthens this feeling and he isn’t sure why. This drives him to visit Rekall. A place that implants memories into your brain and allows you to live out whatever fantasy you desire. While setting up his trip, things go crazy and he finds out that things are not what they seem to be. When he leaves Rekall he finds his wife Lori (Kate Bekinsale) is trying to kill him and after a fairly decent yet all too familiar chase scene we meet up with freedom fighter Melina (Jessica Beil) who is tasked in helping him remember who he is. From here on out we get what I have dubbed Quaid Runner.
The movies plot quickly takes a back seat to chase scene after chase scene with enemies that were taught at the Cobra Commander school of weapons training. They couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn let alone a moving target. None of it is particularly spectacular or memorable. It’s all just extremely dull. The action drives its way to the inevitable conclusion with the true danger Cohaagen (Bryan Cranston) which was also very anticlimactic. Throughout the movie, they throw in some nods for those that have seen the original movie. One in particular is so out of place they should have scrapped it all together. The biggest problem I had was that it was hard to care about anything going on as the movie never really shows the struggle or plight of the Colony. So what is the fight for. Hell, Quaid’s apartment looks pretty stylish to me.
The one thing that is done right is the design of the locales. The Colony is clearly inspired by Blade Runner and The UFB is pretty much a throwback to Minority report. It’s clear this movie had a budget and the CG shows it. However that’s not saying much as the best part of Batman and Robin was also the set design and we all know that was god awful.
In the end, Farrell was serviceable, Beckinsale reprized her roll as the death dealer from Underworld as she was a bad ass Beil was meh and Cranston is always awesome. The plot was paper thin the action was abundant yet boring and the film as a whole was just dumb. It’s sad when your exhausted after watching an action movie and its for the wrong reason.
Rating = Dumb out of 5
We will talk Total Recall in depth on this week’s episode of The Nerdpocalypse podcast