Unnecessary remake of 1990 Arnie action romp Discuss this article
The first question, of course, is why. Why take a film that has barely aged a day since its release in 1990 and subject it to the CG remake treatment? The second is who? What director worth his stripes would even attempt such a folly, and who could he persuade to be in it?
To be fair, Total Recall isn’t the unmitigated disaster many had predicted. Its future world is nicely detailed, if deeply derivative (rain, neon, Chinese people on bikes), the action sequences occasionally spark, and the central conceit of an economically and socially divided Earth linked by a lift passing through the planet’s core is interesting enough to almost – almost – begin to justify this project.
But the positives end there. As Doug Quaid, the seemingly ordinary Joe who finds out he’s really a double-agent super spy, Colin Farrell manages to be even less convincing than Arnold Schwarzenegger. The women in his life, especially Kate Beckinsale in the badass Sharon Stone role, are beyond dull, while poor Bill Nighy is relegated to a few portentous lines before being unceremoniously knocked off.
But the real culprit here is director Len Wiseman. There’s no denying his eye for a surprising angle, an unusual location – but the editing is so confusing, the action so consequence-free that it becomes almost unwatchable. Total Recall is Hollywood hack-work at its worst: pointless, witless, and so very unnecessary. Tom HuddlestonBy Time Out staff
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