Total Recall review

Total Recall  

Starring: Colin Farrell, Jessica Biel, Kate Beckinsale, Bryan Cranston, Bokeem Woodbine, Bill Nighy, John Cho

Directed by Len Wiseman

Rated:  PG-13

Run Time: 118 mins

Genre: Action/ Sci-Fi/ Adventure


Opens Friday, August 3rd, 2012

by Lisa Minzey

Another screening we checked out this week was Total Recall, the remake of the 1990 film; directed by Len Wiseman (Underworld, Live Free or Die Hard).

At the end of the 21st century, humans have destroyed most of the Earth through nuclear war, leaving only two spots on Earth somewhat inhabitable. These two places are now known as The United Federation ofBritain & “The Colony” a.k.a. in our time, South Pacific/Australia region. Humans now have to commute from one end of the planet to the other, just to go to work every day. Transportation technology now allows humans to shoot across the planet through in less than 20 minutes, with the bonus of gravity reversal.

The United Federation of Britain is ruled by Chancellor Cohaagen (Bryan Cranston), a man who states he’s for the people and rules with their best interest and safety in mind. The other place that the human race inhabits, “The Colony”, is home to members of the rebellion. A man named Matthais (Billy Nighy) leads the rebels in the Resistance against the Chancellor & people of the U.F.B., by supposedly committing terrorist acts of violence.

For Doug Quaid (Colin Farrell), life is a dull existence plagued by recurring nightmares. In these dreams, he’s being chased, shot at and then captured; only he’s with a woman whom he doesn’t know (Jessica Biel). When he relays the dream sequence to his wife Lori (Kate Beckinsale), he tells her almost everything; omitting the fact that there’s another woman starring in the female role. During his waking hours, he’s a factory worker who commutes from “The Colony” to the U.F.B. to a job he hates, living in a home he hates; feeling like he’s trapped in a non existence.

Even his best friend Harry (Bokeem Woodbine) is concerned.  When Doug mentions his interest in Total Rekall, a memory implanting service, Harry tells him how some people become lobotomized after going through the rekall process. Doug dismissed the thought and returns to his dismal existence.

One night, on his home from a drinking escapade with Harry, Doug wanders over to the Total Rekall clinic that a new coworker spoke highly of. He was told to ask for McClane (John Cho) and that he would be taken care of.  Looking for some adventure, Doug chooses the Secret Agent package of memories to be implanted. As a precautionary measure to ensure quality and health assurance, each recipient going  through the recall process must undergo type of  polygraph to make sure they are stable enough to sustain the process; forgoing any mental meltdowns that may occur.  Doug fails the polygraph, albeit due to he’s truly a secret agent but is unaware.

From that moment on, the police chase after Doug, referring to him as Hauser, Matthias’s #2 in command for the Resistance. Doug is so confused, as he has no memory of who he is, but his body can respond to the way of a secret agent?

Can Doug/Hauser figure out who he is, what his role in the world is and help return peace between the Colony and the U.F.B before it’s too late?

In the 2012 version of "Total Recall"  there are some noticeable differences between it and the 1990 version starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. In Len  Wiseman's film, the story takes place on Earth, rather than Mars; Doug's wife Lina's role has been expanded and the technology is definitely improved. Some of the cheesy lines have stayed, as did a few of the iconic characters that made the first film memorable; just used in a different capacity to keep the 2012 version PG-13. How does the new version stack up to the original? It depends on the viewer & demographic set. Those that saw the original, may not be that impressed but those who are just being introduced to the story, the action sequences are enough to keep the viewer engaged.

Check out Total Recall when it opens in theaters nation wide Friday August 3rd,2012.