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The plot is a near carbon copy of the 1990 version sans the Colony being in Mars and the fascinating mutants. Instead, this version's Colony is formerly Australia and the other habitable territory of Earth is the United Federation of Britain. The colonists want autonomy and the federation wants dictatorship over the colony. The key to freedom for one and control for the other lies in the hands of one Douglas Quaid. Never thought I'd miss Arnold Schwarzenegger's cheesy one-liners but I did. This film's dialogue is real-world based which compliments the overall feel of the movie. Colin Farrell takes to action like a duck to water, he is completely believable. Beckinsale is a seasoned action pro and it's clearly evident in all her scenes. Cranston's character is one-dimensional and underused while Jessica Biel's role could have been played by any off-the-shelf Jessica Biel. The two reasons to watch this film on the big screen is for its cinematography and set design. The look of the film is loaded with minute details and the atmosphere is akin to that of BLADE RUNNER, the car chase scene is similar to THE FIFTH ELEMENT and even the robots look like a militarized version of those seen in I' ROBOT. The film is a visual feast for the eyes but it sorely lacks original content. Len Wiseman is one of the best action film directors in Hollywood right now and he doesn't disappoint when it comes to certain action scenes, but his version is missing the sheer grandiosity and magic of the 1990 version.
In all fairness, this is not a bad movie at all. As a genre movie it's
simply providing some good fun and eye candy as well. However when you
start comparing it to the first Paul Verhoeven movie version, starring
Arnold Schwarzenegger, you'll have to conclude that this movie, by far,
is being an inferior one.
There really were plenty of problems I had with this movie but the bottom-line of it all was that this movie is being nothing more but an average one, in about every regard. It stands out in absolutely no way, except maybe for its looks.
Visually it's being a great movie to look at. Not only are the special effects just fine but so its set design. The movie really has a very typical futuristic/science-fiction Philip K. Dick look and feel to it and the movie is incredibly detailed looking. They definitely spend some money on this movie, which luckily can all be seen back on the screen.
But lets get back to the problems of this movie. Probably the biggest problem of the movie is that it does a poor job at handling and telling its story. I would imaging that anyone who had never seen the first movie version, or has read the Philip K. Dick short story, will have an incredibly hard time figuring out what is going exactly on in this movie. It's never really focused enough on telling its story and the main plot line gets introduced far too late in this to its audience.
Basically this is being a movie in which its main character is constantly on the run. It's like a non-stop chase movie, in which the movie never stops or slows down to elaborate on anything or let stuff sink in. It probably sounds like a good and awesome that this movie is incredibly fast paced and basically has non-stop action in it but let me tell; you get fed up with all of it after a while. It's also hard to remain impressed with everything this movie constantly throws at you. Instead of having one or two standout action scenes the movie is being like one, big, long but average action scene.
This is probably why this movie will be a big disappointment to most people; it does absolutely nothing to stand out. It's sort of funny how the movie is constantly paying homage to the first movie version (also to please the fans no doubt) but it leaves out all of its greatest moments and does almost nothing creative or interesting by itself.
It's hard to really feel involved with this movie, or with its main character, played by Colin Farrell, since it's mostly being average and predictable all the way through with its story and developments. This takes away so much of the tension and thriller aspects of the movie and besides ruins everything that potential could had been interesting and clever about this movie its story.
Nothing wrong with being average. It just means that it isn't being very memorable, or all that great and interesting to watch. It's still good as a genre movie and definitely also as eye candy!
A total waste of money compared to the original with Arnie. The red herrings -the original 'two weeks' exploding head decoy and the one and only mutant girl three boobs who looked completely out of place - were just cameos copied from the original in an attempt to placate those of us who loved that version. It didn't. There was no Mars, no mutants, just blank expressions, car chases and fights in a wet, cluttered set. The chosen story line was very confusing and unclear and I was continually waiting for something interesting to happen. At least the original version was filmed in good lighting, clear to watch with a real futuristic, extra-planetary sci-fi tone to it. This remade rubbish looked like 'storm trooper meets blade runner' but with even more rain. If you must do remakes instead of using imagination to create something new, then at least do a good job of it. This version grossed millions at box office but I bet few will want to see it twice. The original is still fun to watch a dozen times over - the remake won't be. Very disappointed.
If you appreciate a good action film with great effects... this will
not disappoint! maybe it is a remake and the story may be the same...
to be expected...
Short review, but do not let any other reviews put you off watching this film...
Colin Farrell is brilliant in his role and Kate Beckinsale is just as good...
This movie combined a good plot with good acting and is very satisfying...
Kate Beckinsale and Jessica Biel are both great in the film and provide all the eye candy needed...
i haven't given an in depth review of this movie because to get one you really need to watch it...
All the negative reviews need to be ignored and this movie needs to be taken as it is intended... not with a this has to totally blow my mind compared to the first one as this will never be the case...
Long story short.... Watch this film!
Due to a busy schedule, I was only able to catch TOTAL RECALL (2012)
long after its release date and I was a bit surprised that the remake
to one of my favorite Schwarzenegger movies wasn't the total failure I
was expecting. But just because it managed to redeem itself doesn't
mean that the movie was any good; rather, TOTAL RECALL the remake is
one of the most mediocre films I've seen this year.
I wasn't expecting the most original Ridley Scott level sci-fi story from the remake but to call the storyline of the new RECALL as "cliched" is an understatement. The whole movie is a cliché-ridden mess; if you've seen enough sci-fi and action movies, you'll lose track of the number of clichés and tropes you could find if you were to try listing every single one of them down. TOTAL RECALL has every cliché you could think off, from the evil inhuman corporate executive right down to the bomb with a timer. Aside from that, the remake managed to turn the original simple but very entertaining action movie into a flat, cliché-ridden piece that made the fatal mistake of taking itself too seriously (the socio-political themes didn't work out one bit in this movie for me).
The action isn't even worth the price of admission; it feels too watered down(even for a PG-13 movie)to be impressive or even thrilling at the least. Bullets and punches may have been fired and thrown all over the place and car chases are abundant in the movie but never is the adrenaline of any good action movie felt.
The acting, on the other hand, was actually good for an action movie. Colin Ferell plays a believable worker thrown into a complicated situation and for this, TOTAL RECALL gets some points from me. But even if he and the rest of the cast were fairly competent in their acting, the lines that came out of their mouths were anything but that. Good actors can only show their skills well if the script they're working with is good but in this case, good actors were given a mediocre by-the-numbers action movie script. The lines came out as cheesy and forced most of the time (especially the ones that are supposed to make you "think") and almost all of the plot is spoonfed to the audience. You could see the twists coming a mile away since the movie wasn't even intent on keeping them secret; they were just told right off the bat.
Another positive element in the movie was its visualization of the future. While not the most original since almost every future looks like a BLADE RUNNER knock-off these days, at least some of the imagery was striking enough to be remembered. Problem is, though, not all of the scenes were impressive due to the lackluster CGI used. Despite a large budget, most of the scenes looked obviously and painfully fake due to the over-reliance on green-screen effects and the like. Thanks to this, the admittedly interesting future cities aren't engaging at all.
TOTAL RECALL is far from being a total failure but it isn't anything interesting. There are plenty of good sci-fi action movies out there that engage you in their respective universes and make you think/ reflect on certain things while at the same time entertain you with impressive action scenes; this rendition of TOTAL RECALL is not one of those. Watching the new TOTAL RECALL is the equivalent of watching your friend play a video game; it's fun too look at, it looks cool but you don't really care since you're not immersed in the world anyway. It's just eye candy, and not even good or entertaining eye candy at that.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
While many don't understand is, the movie is depicting the main
character Douglas Quaid in his "Recall". Similar to the original title,
the plot and the accidents are ridiculous - similar to "American
Psycho" - it is supposed to be ridiculous. It's a smart way of making
movies so it leads to discussion of weather the movie was "artificial
memories" from the "Recall".
I can't deny that most audiences had lost patience watching and thinking about movies these days because in fact they have been so sick of it...to truly understand a movie you have to stop watching them for a while, having the desire and anticipation of what it might be like before you go ahead and enjoy them like fast food. Total Recall is quite entertaining, the minus 1 point is due to the lack of creative element for fighting scene.
Total Recall was an incredibly good movie when it hit the theaters.
Arnold made it simply awesome, one of his best movies. The hard life on
the Mars colony is colorful and imaginative, it brought something very
original to the SciFi scene.
This remake doesn't bring anything new. Absolutely nothing. Its boring. Plain boring. Visual effects are off the shelf, already seen a thousand times. Characters are unimaginative and uninteresting. The story is weak.
In my opinion this movie is an offense to the original. Its like a bad parody without any purpose.
I remembered the old Total Recall movie with fondness and for that
reason I decided to watch it again before watching the new version.
While the 1990 version was 80% Robocop with a different script and
Conan instead of a robot, the 2012 seems to be 80% Underworld, without
vampires and werewolves, yet, ironically, with robots.
Mars was replaced with Earth. Mutant workers replaced with the population of a controlled colony, the ridiculous scientific ideas in the 1990 version were replaced with other ridiculous scientific ideas, only completely over the top (transporting people from one side to the other of the Earth via a giant elevator, for instance), and the CGI was punched to the max, on the tune of Blade Runner and Minority Report.
The general idea remains the same, though, with Colin Farrell doing a very decent acting job and the two insanely lovely actresses mostly running around and kicking butt. However this version places a lot of the emphasis on the action scenes. Remove them and the entire plot is stripped down, empty, mediocre. That's why, even being better on all counts than the Paul Verhoeven version, it doesn't measure much above it overall.
Bottom line: visually stunning (and not just because of Kate and Jessica), exhausting speed, good acting, a plot that makes no sense and a very small, oh so very small role for Bill Nighy. Average overall.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Total Recall is anything but ordinary. That is to say, the film is
second to none! I can say this with certainty on account of these two
First, the plot of the film made me dwell on it. The movie has a refreshing story, which shows a secret agent, Hauser figuring out his erased memory. Watching the film, I was confused some of the times because I didn't know for sure if Douglus is having illusions of Hauser on the REKALL chair or if Douglas is actually Hauser. I loved the fact that I could actually ponder seriously while watching the film.
Second, the quotes of Matthias made a great impression on me. He said that one should listen to his heart to know who he really is. He said clinging to the past is not helpful at all and can also do us harm. For me, what Matthias said really helped because now I stopped worrying that I might not do as well as the past. It's not the past that I have to care about, but the present.
As I'm not a native speaker of English, it was not so easy for me to understand the film fully without making mistakes. But one thing for sure, I just luuuved it!
I quite enjoy Arnie's Total Recall, but I am by no means a die-hard fan and subsequently viewed this updated version without prejudice or the desire to compare. Len Wiseman, director of guilty pleasures Underworld and Die Hard 4.0, has delivered the mind-numbing, bombastic goods yet again. His Recall is packed with exciting futuristic landscapes, stylish action sequences (the vertigo-inducing car chase was thrilling) and near-perfect CGI; all merging to create a wonderful couple of hours of real-life escapism. The story is engaging without being mind-blowing and it chucks in a few cheeky references to 1990's Recall however it runs out of puff in the final act and provides a ho-hum ending. Colin Farrell is reliable as the perplexed anti-hero, Jessica Biel notches up another satisfactory action chick role and Kate Beckinsale most definitely "gives good wife", however Bryan Cranston lets the team down as the one-dimensional villain. Slotting in somewhere under Christopher Nolan and above P.T. Anderson on the filmmaking scale, Wiseman isn't a master of the blockbuster movie but he certainly knows how to produce a rollicking good ride.
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