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TOTAL RECALL: “Doesn’t Miss a Beat in the Bad-Ass Department”

Colin Farrell as Douglas Quaid/Hauser
Kate Beckinsale as Lori Quaid
Jessica Biel as Melina
Bryan Cranston as Cohaagen
In theaters August 3

Bourne meets Blade Runner in this stylish remake of the 1990 Sci-Fi action thriller. In the future, global warfare has left the planet virtually uninhabitable with the exception of two major zones:  The Colony and The United Federation of Britain. Although Robotic factory worker Doug Quaid (Farrell) seems to have it all, a steady job and a beautiful wife (Beckinsale), he is not happy.  He is haunted by dreams that leave him longing for something more in his mundane life. One day he sees an ad for Rekall; a place that will give you any memories you desire. Against a co-worker’s advice, he visits Rekall to perhaps change his life with a fulfilling memory, but when he gets strapped in to begin the journey, all Hell breaks loose. With the help of a girl, up until now, he’s only seen in his dreams (Biel), Doug begins to unravel the mystery of who he is and why he may be the savior of the planet.

While the term remake gets thrown around, this film has a lot more elements in common with the original short story I Can Remember It for You Wholesale by Phillip K Dick than the original movie.  It’s been 20 years (can you believe it?) since the Arnold Schwarzenegger version. Gone is that idealistic utopian society. This reality is dark and gritty, with heavy Asian influence, much like the Blade Runner landscape, complete with flying hover cars. Always been a sucker for a good car chase, and you’ve never seen a car chase till you’ve seen hover cars flying at breakneck speed!

With fighting moves so smooth and deadly, Colin Farrell could easily have qualified as a candidate for the next Jason Bourne. Kate Beckinsale doesn’t miss a beat in the bad-ass department. Anyone who’s seen Underworld would agree.  Jessica Biel is a revelation! This is the first time I have ever seen her really break out from a fluff role and kick some ass. She’s got considerable grit here and is very believable as a guerrilla resistance fighter in the war of societal equality. A war which the consummate establishment villain (Cranston) wants to win by imposing his will on the entire planet.

All in all this is a great thrill ride! (My compliments to the fight coordinator). This movie is a fresh take- it will keep you guessing, while fans of the original will NOT be disappointed. There are a couple of nods to the original movie in the form of a couple of stand-out characters. (One of them is that girl with that something extra)

The only thing I did NOT like about this movie is that director Len Wiseman used a visual style very similar to the one which J.J. Abrams chose for Star Trek. The style that at least one light source in almost every scene should cause glare on the screen. I just find that very annoying. Once you get past that, you’ve got what could possibly be the biggest film of the summer.

5 out of 5 stars.

Check out the trailer for TOTAL RECALL below:

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