Total Recall (2012)
Starring: Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Jessica Biel
Doug Quaid (Farrell) has been frustrated lately. He works a mundane factory job in a post-apocalyptic world day after day and, when he comes home, he’s been bothered by odd nightmares. His wife (Beckinsale) tries to console him, but Quaid wants some relief. He turns to a shady downtown business called “Rekall,” which gives customers memory implants, letting them live their fantasies. It’s discreet and low-risk, which is just what Quaid wants. The one pre-requisite is that none of the memories that are being implanted can be even remotely true. Quaid choosing something a little off-the-wall – something he knows could not possibly have anything to do with his real life. He wants to be a secret agent. All systems are go and they’re about to put Quaid under when something goes horribly wrong. In a matter of seconds, they are yanking the IVs from his arms and Rekall is under attack by government soldiers. Instinctively, Quaid hits the deck for protection, but moments later, he is attacking the soldiers and is the only man left standing. Somehow, he had taken out and killed everyone else in the room. Confused, Quaid must determine what is real. What is his real life and which memories have been implanted in his brain? Quaid is thrown head-first into a world-wide manhunt in the midst of a terrorist plot to overthrow the government. Meanwhile, in his search for truth, one woman, an unlikely ally (Biel), may have the answers he so desperately seeks.
The Story: The plot in “Total Recall” is good. A normal guy gets mixed up in a global terrorist ring and struggles to find truth in a mixed up, dystopian world. It’s set in the not-so-distant future, which is cool and intriguing in many ways. Character development is lacking (and that’s at least partially on purpose), but it’s a bit hard to pick sides between the United Federation of Britain and the Colony when you know next-to-nothing about either side.
The Acting: It’s a wonder Colin Farrell isn’t some huge action star. He’s made a few big movies, but why is this guy not all over the place, landing big rolls at the blink of an eye? He’s fantastic, as always, and the other main roles are good, too.
The Genre: As a sci-fi action thriller, “Total Recall” is incredible. Hands down, the best thing about this movie is the cinematography and special effects. It is easily one of the best-looking Blu-rays to date, with spectacular action sequences and stunning visuals. The “future” aspect is awesome, with wacky vehicles, cool weapons, and robot armies. The “gravity reversal” sequences are out-of-this-world (almost literally).
“Total Recall” has a cool concept, good acting, and raises the bar, as far as CGI and HD visuals are concerned. Seriously. It’s an absolute marvel to watch. But the problem with the movie is that it gets so bogged down with unnecessary garbage that it will turn many viewers off early on. Let us get one thing straight – this is not a movie for children. With as much profanity as this movie offers and with the infamous mutated prostitute making an appearance, it’s really a wonder that this movie got away with a PG-13 rating. If you can manage to put that stuff aside, it’s a pretty cool show, though, which begs the question: Why include that crap in the first place?? You may also be interested in: “Minority Report” (2002), “I, Robot” (2004), “Inception” (2010).
Blu-ray bonus features:
– Audio in English, English Descriptive Audio Service, French, Spanish
– Subtitles in English, English SDH, French, Spanish
– “Total Recall – Insight Mode”: Delivers scene-specific behind-the-scenes video throughout the movie.
– No other bonus features available on rental version
Directed by: Len Wiseman
Studio: Original Film
Running time: 118 minutes
MPAA rating: PG-13 for “intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, some sexual content, brief [R-rated, female] nudity, and language,” including one use of the F-word, repetitive use of the S-word throughout, and violence against women.
Costars Bryan Cranston, Bill Nighy, Bokeem Woodbine
Blu-ray release date: December 18, 2012
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