The new version/ remake of TOTAL RECALL
is an action driven film with some political overtones. It is a more serious
version compared to the 1990 version which this 2012 film is very loosely based on.
It starts out close to the original film before going off in its own direction.
Lori’s character is combined with Michael Ironside’s character from the original to have a killer bitch
that wants Quaid dead and Kate Beckinsale is the standout actor in this movie.
I wanted to cheer her on since Colin Farrell is such a non-presence in this movie because Colin doesn’t have
the charisma like Arnold
did with the same role (Even Jessica Biel has more presence and yet she isn’t as good as Rachel Ticotin as Melina).
I felt under whelmed by this new version
as I missed all the humor and hyper violence of the 1990 film. The special
effects do help create a Fifth Element/ Blade Runner/ Total Recall 2070 type of world which is amazing to see. The new score is not bad for this new version, but Jerry Goldsmith’s score still rules. TOTAL RECALL 2012 isn’t a train wreck and yet it doesn’t eclipse
or equal the Paul Verhoeven film, but it does have great visuals and non stop action sequences that run like a bullet train.
I miss the mutants and the humor.
I do like the spin the new film puts on the scenes from the 1990 movie
as it works to be its own creation.
The film opens with Quaid having the same
nightmare over and over that he is bored by his current life that he decides to make a trip to a memory service called Rekall
where you live fake memories as good as the real ones. When he visits Rekall,
everything starts going to hell for Quaid as he is soon shooting at the security forces of the United Federation of Britain (that is a mix of human stormtroopers and robots) while on the run from Lori
who is just an agent planted there to pose as his wife. Quaid begins to
find out about his previous life as a secret agent known as Hauser while Chancellor Vilos Cohaagen plans an invasion of the
colony since land is precious due to most of the planet being rendered uninhabitable by chemical warfare. UFB and the Colony (aka Australia) are
connected by an underground travel system (which runs near the Earth’s core during part of the trip) that workers use
to travel back and forth. The rebels led by Mathias are trying to break
free from the hold of the UFB, but the terrorist attacks aren’t helping (and the question is who is behind them- Mathias
or the UFB).
TOTAL RECALL has great action, world building,
a good score, and Kate Beckinsale. However, the rest is missing that made the
1990 film so awesome. Len Wiseman is becoming a good action director and
Kate Beckinsale (his wife) works well with him (her third film with Len as director).
Kurt Wimmer is probably responsible for writing the great action stuff, but I wish TOTAL RECALL had more great political
undertones like the underrated EQUILIBRIUM (written and directed by Kurt Wimmer).
The script has great action like EQUILIBRIUM, ULTRAVIOLET, and the UNDERWORLD films.
Still I hope the director’s cut on Blu-ray (with 17 more minutes) will help clear some things up and make the
movie a little bit better. If you want great action and Kate, go
see it in the theaters.
THOUGHTS ON THE EXTENDED DIRECTOR’S
I love the slower pace and how they develop
Melina’s character more in addition to dropping more hints in addition to a subplot where Quaid used to have a different
face (as played by Ethan Hawke) before he was captured and was made to forget by United Federation of Britain leader Vilos
Cohaagen. I do prefer the original cut of TOTAL RECALL compared to the
PG-13 cut where Wiseman felt some scenes in the extended cut confused some audience members resulting in some reshoots and
a shorter cut.
Director Lens Wiseman recorded a very informative
audio commentary for the extended director’s cut as he explains what scenes are in this version and what is different
in the theatrical cut in addition to trying to at least film some practical elements for CGI effects and how test audiences
shaped the theatrical cut.
The theatrical cut has an in-movie video
experience called TOTAL RECALL WITH INSIGHT as various behind-the-scenes interviews and footage in addition to pop up facts
bring an immersive behind-the-scenes movie experience like Warner Brothers Maximum Movie mode and it runs about 137 minutes
long as it takes you in and out of the movie. Some of the material here isn’t
included in the behind-the-scenes material on the second blu-ray disc.
Blu-ray disc 2-
SCIENCE FICTION vs. SCIENCE FACT with Micho
DESIGNING THE FALL-
STEPPING INTO RECALL- various previz of
the major fight and chase sequences in the film and it runs about for 25 minutes in total.
Target DVD Bonus disc-
Two additional featurettes where one focuses
on the visual effects and how Len Wiseman combines practical sets and elements with CGI while the other is on the action and
stunts of TOTAL RECALL
FINAL ANALYSIS: The extended director’s cut fleshes out the characters and story more with some good behind-the-scenes
extras on the discs.
This movie review is (c)12-21 -2012 David
Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to email@example.com