Total Recall (2012)

Total Recall (2012) - Poster 1

When memories become as malleable as a rubber band, just how is “identity” defined?

Total Recall (2012) may not be original, humorous or entirely engaging for those comparing it to the 1990 film with the same name, but I actually found it was a very well rounded film which kept me enthralled and completely transfixed for the two hours which I spent watching it. It was an immensely entertaining film for me, one which I thoroughly enjoyed.

When I actually start to analyse the film and look at the elements that make it up, I do begin to realise just how many flaws Total Recall (2012) has but when I think back to how much I enjoyed the film while watching it, I also begin to realise just how disassociated logic and coherence were to my state of mind during such a time. Everything from the characters, the actors/actresses that played them, the progression of the story, the world setting, the action sequences, I loved them all and I can’t help but state that I was completely satisfied.

The world setting, wow, just wow, what a phenomenal job was done creating the world of Total Recall after chemical warfare rendered most of the world unlivable. The imagery of the Colony was so vivid and characterised, it seemed so real and believable. When you contrast the Colony to the imagery of the United Federation of Britain you begin to understand the division between the two zones and the people living in them, which in turn helps you understand the attitudes held by citizens of both zones. I also loved how the Colony structures were showcased during the action sequences at the beginning of the film when Hauser’s troubles started.

Colin Farrel is one sexy man and I thought he did a brilliant job at portraying Carl Hauser, his character was believable and during that scene where he couldn’t dissociate between reality and fantasy, I could feel the tension and was eagerly awaiting what he was going to do.

Kate Beckinsale, another addition to the sexy cast of Total Recall, her portrayal of Lori was impressive, and her attitude and accent change really did signal the beginning of the troubles for Farrel’s character. The ruthlessness and driven aspect of Lori when it came to Hauser was conveyed nicely by Beckinsale, almost to the point of actually becoming terrified of her (but thanks to her acting in so many movies I’ve enjoyed, I couldn’t help but love her). Lori put so much effort and will in pursuit of carrying out her objectives throughout the film, it makes the way things ended up as seem quite melancholy.

Jessica Biel, I’ll be honest here, she is EXTREMELY sexy and the way she portrays tough female characters, it’s just too good. Her entrance in the film when she saved Hauser was such a spectacle it almost made Farrel’s character seem like the second main character. And my goodness, those lips, every time there was a close-up of her, it was like an event.

Well now that that creepy excitement is out of the way, I’ll move on to the chemistry between Hauser and Biel’s character, Melina, it was good, real good, and one of my favourite parts of the film. Having an already existing relationship between the two brought back to square one and having it build back up in a totally new way, it was such a fascinating development. It encapsulated Hauser’s search for himself within its embrace and through all the fake memories and lost memories, there remained a base for Hauser to fall back on grasped tightly by his heart, it was his love for Melina. Such a development begs the question, what makes a person who they are? Do memories really play an integral part in defining who someone is, or is it really a matter of a person being who they are just because they are?

Total Recall - Poster 2

The dimensions of “real” stretched into the realms of Recall; Total Recall

The story is nothing original as it follows closely with the story of the 1990 film, but the film builds itself nicely around it to create something modern and entertaining with a hint of freshness. The main antagonist, a corrupt and power-hungry politician, was severely lack-luster that it most likely will be one of things easily forgotten about Total Recall (2012), yet the simplicity of it makes other aspects of the film stand out more, like Hauser’s search for his identity and purpose.

Now I did watch the original Total Recall over a month ago when it came on TV, but the state of mind I was in when watching Total Recall (2012) was a state in which my mind kept both films separate and away from viewing the film through the eyes of comparison, and honestly I am glad I was in such a state because I got to enjoy the movie not as a remake but as a movie. Although I suppose it is inevitable that this film will be compared to the 1990 sci-fi classic, and have its flaws as a remake highlighted.

Well while the separate elements of Total Recall (2012) may have its flaws, I found that in this case, the sum of the parts added up to more than the combination of all the parts, it was a film where when all the flawed parts came together, an extremely entertaining and satisfying film was created. I just can’t help but love this film because I really really enjoyed a lot! In my opinion, it’s definitely worth the ticket price and I recommend it.

Enjoyment Value: 8.8/10

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1 Response to Total Recall (2012)

  1. Couldn’t agree more! We felt the same about the movie, as though it was flawed but still one hell of a ride!
    Check out our review a t 🙂

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