Total Recall (2012)

© Columbia Pictures. All Rights Reserved.
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Released:  Friday, August 3, 2012  
Length:  118 minutes
Studio: Columbia Pictures
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Action/Adventure
Rating: Total Recall is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of AmericaSome material may be inappropriate for children under 13.


Welcome to Rekall, the company that can turn your dreams into real memories. For a factory worker named Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell), even though he’s got a beautiful wife (Kate Beckinsale) who he loves, the mind-trip sounds like the perfect vacation from his frustrating life – real memories of life as a super-spy might be just what he needs. But when the procedure goes horribly wrong, Quaid becomes a hunted man. Finding himself on the run from the police – controlled by Chancellor Cohaagen (Bryan Cranston), the leader of the free world – Quaid teams up with a rebel fighter (Jessica Biel) to find the head of the underground resistance (Bill Nighy) and stop Cohaagen. The line between fantasy and reality gets blurred and the fate of his world hangs in the balance as Quaid discovers his true identity, his true love, and his true fate.

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 Can't sleep.
3/18/2014 12:21 AM EDT

 Lets see.
9/6/2013 11:57 PM EDT

 Gets better with every viewing.
7/30/2013 11:43 PM EDT

3/28/2013 1:05 AM EDT
Total Recall images are © Columbia Pictures. All Rights Reserved.

Live Out A Fantasy Life in The "Welcome To Rekall" Sweepstakes  7/9/2012 11:16 AM EDT
CULVER CITY, Calif., July 5, 2012 - Ever wish you could be a sports anchor, behind the scenes at ESPN?  A Rock Star, chilling with Green Day?  A fashionista, hanging with Heidi Klum?  A professional videogamer?  A Club DJ?  A secret agent?  Now, Rekall will give moviegoers the chance to live out their fantasies. In the new movie Total Recall, in theaters August 3rd, an ordinary factory worker visi...  More>>

Total Recall Theatrical Review

In a summer of sequels and reboots comes our first remake, Total Recall. This entry is based on the 1990 film of the same name, and the short story by acclaimed science fiction writer Phillip K. Dick. It seeks to retell the story of Douglas Quaid - a blue collar worker with an average life living in the future who believes he is cut out for something more than what he has.]

While loosely based on Phillip K. Dick's short story "We Can Remember it For You For Wholesale", Director Len Wiseman (Underworld, Live Free Die Hard) and screenplay writer, Kurt Wimmer (Equilibrium) source the version starring Paul Verhoeven (Robocop) and Arnold Schwarzenegger (Terminator, True Lies) as the main inspiration for the new film.
If you are unfamiliar with Total Recall (aka you were born in the 90s), the basic plot goes something like this: Douglas Quaid (Collin Farrel, In Bruges, Fright Night) is a blue collar construction worker who feels his life is meant for more aside from his dumpy apartment and his gorgeous but distant wife (Kate Beckinsale, Underworld). He visits "Rekall" where your dreams can become a reality through manipulation of your mind. However, Douglas visit to Rekall is cut short when they hit a memory cap and his entire life is turned upside down.

While the previous Total Recall tried to blend thought provoking science fiction with over-the-top action, and comedy, this new version strips out all of those elements and tries to go for the mind-numbing quick cuts and ludicrous action sequences that numb the senses to a point that any soul the movie had the first go round is stripped out, thrown on the ground, and stomped upon.

The only humor provided in the film is the "tongue-in-cheek" nods to the original film such as the three-breasted prostitute (of course they don't explain how she got three-breasts since there isn't any "bad air" to create mutants such as the original film explained), and a nod to the malfunctioning obese lady disguise Arnold Schwarzenegger used in the first film.
Moreover, the heart of the original film was in that it always tried to play up the aspect that the entire experience was a dream (or was it reality?) whereas the second one just accepts that this is all happening in the real world. Much like if you are going to remake ‘Star Wars' you have to have "the force" - Total Recall was all about Quaid's struggle between dream and reality.

One would expect with actors such as Collin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale (Underworld), and Jessica Biel (Blade: Trinity) recruited for this remake the film would have a fighting chance or at least be watchable. However, even their performances appear to be dumbed down to the point that you actually look forward to the loud action scenes just to not hear them utter their lines.

The special effects and action are pretty much by the numbers with nothing that will stay with you after you leave theater. There is your standard car chase, your "one-man beats up 10 bad guys in less than 20 seconds" action, and of course the standard CG you would expect in today's cinema. Nothing about the effects in this film screams Oscar as the original one did in 1990 (and went on to win the Oscar that year for Best Special Effects).

Hopefully someday a place such as Rekall will be invented, so one can erase this horrible film from your mind. Until then, do yourself a favor -- purchase the brand new Total Recall Mind-Bending Edition Blu-ray and treat yourself to a truly amazing film that will never, and should have never, been touched.


For more reviews please visit our film/television review section.

Total Recall Panel at Comic Con 2011
Total Recall Panel at Comic Con 2011
Welcome to Rekall, the company that can turn your dreams into real memories. For a factory worker named Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell), even though he’s got a beautiful wife (Kate Beckinsale) who...