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Total Recall More at IMDbPro »

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24 out of 45 people found the following review useful:


Author: anwarnajmi from Los Angeles
12 August 2012

This is the best sci-fi movie I have seen in decades. I was blown away by the visuals, new interpretation of the plot and brilliant sound score. An amazing movie experience. My brain could scarcely keep up with what my eyes were seeing, it was that good. The visuals were on a scale and level of realism that I have not seen in any other sci-fi movie. The result: complete transportation into a dark and complex future. Like all great classics, the chemistry between the main characters (Colin, Jessica & Kate) was palpable. I'm pleased to see these three talented actors take their place in cinema history with this classic film.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A quick review of "Total Recall" (2012)

Author: ericrnolan from United States
8 May 2015

"Total Recall" (2012) was a fun, slick update of the 1990 classic; I'd give it an 8 out of 10. It can't match the magic of the original (especially with the abandonment of one particular twist near the end), but it was still fun enough. Plus, any fast-paced, CGI-heavy, sci-fi action movie with both Jessica Biel and Kate Beckinsdale really is just pure nerd fun.

Beckinsdale grows on me. She's a great actress, especially in roles that require her to be powerful or angry, and she does physical stunt-work superbly. She deserves to carry her own franchise, and I mean something better and more mainstream than the "Underworld" films.

Anyway … I'm pretty sure I have a good answer to this movie's central mystery (as well as that of its predecessor). This is the question of whether or not everything Quaid witnesses is real. (Is he a secret agent, or is this all a fantasy generated by "Rekall?")

It is real, and here's why. In both movies, the viewer witnesses events that are outside of Quaid's experience. For example, we see the police plotting to capture him and interviewing witnesses. Quaid is nowhere near these events when they occur, and does not see or hear them; therefore they cannot be part of his virtual reality fantasy. Yet you and I see them up on the screen. So they are real, within the story, and not imagined by Quaid. To me, it all seems pretty straightforward.

All in all, this was a fun ride. I recommend it.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Surprisingly Enjoyable

Author: David Arnold from United States
10 December 2014

Total Recall is the story of a man who wants more from his mundane life and decides to visit Rekall - a company that enables their clients to live out their fantasy lifestyles by implanting fake memories into their minds. However, things start to take a strange turn as Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell) starts to find out that everything he knows about his life may not be what it appears to be.

Now, I have seen the original (who hasn't?), and thoroughly enjoyable, Schwarzenegger version of Total Recall and I went into this remake with little hope of it being any good & maybe expecting the worst, but at the same time I tried to keep an open mind about it. I'm happy to say that I'm glad I did go into it with an open mind because I was very pleasantly surprised with how well this remake was done.

The story travels at quite a fast pace (especially during the abundant action scenes) and you may lose your way sometimes, but there are moments in the movie where it allows you to catch your breath without it coming to a boring crawl or even standstill.

The visuals and special effects are absolutely outstanding even if there was slightly too much happening at one time in a lot of the scenes. To be honest, though, you just get drawn into the amazing environment as you continue to watch the movie unravel.

When I first knew that Colin Farrell would be playing the part of Douglas Quaid I immediately thought "No way - they've definitely got the wrong guy", but I'm not ashamed to admit that I was wrong because he was excellent throughout the whole movie. Kate Beckinsale was fantastic as well, and played the perfect part of being a total b**ch.

While this is a remake it does attempt (and succeeds) to be it's own movie, and there are a few good homages to the original. A couple being a certain "alien" female with an extra appendage and the scene where Quaid arrives at his destination in disguise (but with a nice wee twist).

All in all this movie is a great film to watch and I definitely recommend it to anyone thinking about wanting to see it.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Just Keep Repeating

Author: John Saunders from United States
3 July 2014

I've read the original PKD story, and seen and liked the original movie.

As a result, I decided to hate this movie as soon as the opening started talking about chemical warfare and The Fall.

However, I eventually managed to watch the whole thing.

Then watched it again, and a third time.

I succeeded by repeating to myself, "It's only an action movie. It's only an action movie." In that light, it's a pretty good action movie. The art design is good, and the action is believable, and if you allow yourself, you'll be dragged along, kicking and screaming, into a pretty good movie.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A vivid film, probably done a disservice by its Total Recall connection

Author: antony-1 from UK
6 January 2013

This is a good movie. Fun, action etc. all as expected. But what it does best is setting a very vivid future of Earth. In this way it does better than the original by keeping the action solely on Terra. We get to see a distinct vision of the future, and if you just pause on any city scene you'll see the extreme care and detail that has gone into make this future Earth real. It was wonderful seeing this world - and I want to see more and I think any sci-fi fan will get a buzz just by being immersed in the movie.

The thing is by being called Total Recall it does itself a disservice. Rather than being a new distinct branch of Dick's story it of course hangs on to the original, with the name and various nods to the original plot.

But the original film is iconic and fun and a huge fan favourite - and a quite different beast. You start comparing two very different films because you have to.

The new film tries to be better, but ultimately is shackled by its past.

It should have been called something else - and it would have done so much better in its own right.

All that said - I enjoyed it. But just see it as its own version, not as a remake, and you'll enjoy it more.

One final word - what was with all the weird lights flashing all over the screen all the time? That was the key distraction.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Visual Orgasm

Author: Raj Dee from United States
10 January 2013

The visual are out of this world. Literally. I would be surprised if this movie gets snubbed on set design. Whomever was responsible deserves a parade in his name. For the pure viewing of the sets, it's top notch. No doubt about that. However, this movie lacks in story and acting. I'm still left wondering what the whole purpose was for the take-over. Why wait? Also, travellingthrough the planet should take a little longer than a 20 minute ride. The original was much better in soooo many ways. The main story was about Quaid not knowing if his world is a dream or a reality was the whole enchilada. This new version completely missed on making that impact. That was really the key. This 2012 version almost brushed right by that. Still...the visual are so awesome that I couldn't give it less than a 7.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:


Author: kosmasp
3 January 2013

I am still very fond of the original movie. And you have to have a lot of respect for Paul Verhoeven for getting that performance out of Arnold Schwarzenegger. A performance that was like the movie itself: Hard to define and borderline insane. And therefor had a genius written all over itself!

It was not greeted well, when it was announced and I'm sure a lot of people didn't even bother watching it (the fact it was rated PG-13 drove away another wave of fans of the original). You also don't have as many one-liners for our main character here as there were in the original (most one liners are delivered by Kate Beckinsales character and she's doing an awesome job). Speaking of Kate: Let's say her role is slightly different from Sharon Stones. But not only character tweaks can be found, there also some little story tweaks. I can't tell you if you'll like them. I can tell you, that the special effects here are fantastic though. And I'm looking forward to the extended cut, which will have more "gray" areas, coming even closer to the Original.

Which brings us to the final question: Was it necessary to do a remake? The box office stats would suggest, that yes it was.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

My views about the movie

Author: gzmnuruzun from Turkey
20 April 2013

Last summer , I watched Total Recall on cinema . It is a since fiction film . İf you love since fiction film the Total Recall you should watch .

The Total Recall ' s story really very interesting . Full of surprise . Is it really or imagined ?It understand very difficult .

Total Recall of the lead actor Colin Farrell very successful actor . The movie ' s actors very successful and good actors .

Total Recall is very gripping , it is very excited , it is very good , it is not predictable , it is not dull . In short total Recall spectacular movie .

I like the movie . In my opinion everyone should see this film . It is the worth watching . So I think that .

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

"The past is a construct of the mind. It blinds us."

Author: Al_The_Strange from United States
19 December 2012

This film has received its fair share of outrage. In this day and age with all kinds of films being arbitrarily remade for a quick buck (like Footloose, of all things), Total Recall comes off as just another tired remake. What makes it worse is that the original Total Recall is one of those films that's firmly established its status as a classic science fiction picture; I've known many fans who've expressed their disgust over taking Paul Verhoeven's pulpy masterpiece and practically desecrating it.

Frankly, the hate is justifiable, given that this remake hits up all the same plot points but changes so much around. One could probably spend pages comparing Len Wiseman's film to Verhoeven's, and highlighting everything that made the original better.

That being said, there are things I enjoyed about the remake. A lot of things, actually. The film definitely has action and spectacle: the cityscapes rendered here are among some of the best I've seen since the Star Wars prequels (and they do bear a lot in common with Blade Runner), and serves as a very interesting setpiece for a constant barrage of fight scenes, pursuits, and huge explosions. The action is pretty cool, and I was especially enthralled by the hovercraft chase in the middle of the film. There is a little bit of drag in the first half of the film, but otherwise, I found it most enjoyable.

The plot is pretty much a clone of the original 1990 film, just swapping out specific aspects and the setting. Mars is no longer a major setting; it's all set on a pair of highly futuristic megalopolises. Surprisingly, I believe this is one change that actually benefits the film: as crowded and condensed these cities are, there's finally a logical reason for having the Rekall virtual vacations in this universe. Additionally, the film does show a lot of really cool futuristic things that appeal to sci-fi nerds like myself: I was really intrigued to see a man using his hand as a phone, or to see an entire building fall through a tunnel running through the core of the Earth. Above all, the overall look, style, and tone of the film matches up really well with the type of sci-fi adventure that Phillip K. Dick (author of the original story this franchise is based on) is better known for.

Problem is, all the originality in these few parts don't make the sum of the parts original. Characters don't really stand out much, and the story overall just feels like it's using the structure of the original film as a mere template for all the action scenes and cool ideas. All style and no substance. It figures.

The most criminal omission in the story would be the ambiguity of whether or not the events of the film are "real." In the original, you could conclude that it was all in Quaid's head. You can't in this new version; it's not a mind-bender by any means. In fact, it's the opposite.

Say what you will, I still find the film slick and stylish, as expected with a Len Wiseman film. The opening scenes proved to be a little painful on the eyes, with the lens flares and intense strobe lighting, but I was grateful that it didn't persist for long. Otherwise, I enjoyed the camera work and editing. The actors do the best they can: Collin Farrell is the man, while Jessica Biel and Kate Beckinsale put on their typical tough-girl acts. Writing is not a big standout. This production has a ton of great-looking sets, props, costumes, and special effects. Music has some cool parts.

As expected, the new Total Recall offers a lot of spectacle and cool new toys, but the original is still the best. Sci-fi fans and action junkies might want to give this new take a look; it's about as good (or as bad) as something like The Day The Earth Stood Still remake. If that just appalls you, then you might want to keep your distance.

3.5/5 (Entertainment: Good | Story: Average | Film: Pretty Good)

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5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Worth a watch

Author: bradley_walton1983 from United Kingdom
20 November 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Never went to see it in the cinema though I regret that now. I had bitter thoughts on how it would turn out considering the original was one of the best action sci-fi films of its time. That said, give this a chance and I am sure you will like it. What annoys me is the harmful comments left by many on their thoughts of this film, very unjust... yes of course we are entitled to our own opinion:) Its not just a remake, I believe it can be a new title in its own right. With fantastic special effects, great design, the future was well thought out, good acting(I had never rated Beckinsale that much before) not a bad script considering what Hollywood pumps out each year. The film flew by and anyone that worked on this film did a good job. Lose yourself for a good couple of hours, and when a part of old recall shows its self, it should put a smile on your face. The tear replaced the sweat was even appreciated.

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