Why I didn’t like TOTAL RECALL

total recall, collin,

Bladerunner meets I-Robot meets Fatal Attraction, in a  mixmaster.

Today we are rebooting our Movie review blog, Calm Sea Raging Undertow, with a guest reviewer. So I will hand over the keyboard since it seems he’s revved and ready to go.

That’s right it’s me, Samuel K. Muther-Fucking Jackson, don’t act like you don’t know my last name, cause I will not repeat it for you. And from now on you know what MF stands for, I am not going to type out the whole damn thing ever time, cause it’s late and I’m tired.

total-recall-2012-1.jpgWell, Collin Farrell has finally mellowed the fuck down from all the hard drinking, swearing, snorting and sucking down women like sugar from pixy sticks, as the lion that he is, does.

Now I am not saying the MF stopped all his wonderful madness that makes life worth screaming about but he certainly is making the money makers see his value through the veil of profanity, and just plain anger. So much so that the studios decided to trust him to carry one of their tent-pole, “please don’t do this” remake.

And I say shame, shame on the tent pole, shame on them…

Cause the second Colin as Douglas Quaid steps out onto the balcony of his cubistic, communist MF studio love nest apartment equipped with multilevel floors reflecting his shattered mind, complete with treacherous tent pole bitch wife, Kate “You aint never gonna see my booty cause it’s too hot for you” Beckinsale.


“The second Colin gazes lovingly over the horizon of a plastic 3d extravaganza like muted Play Doh squeezed out by a grinning 5 year old on Christmas morning, the movie died.”

Gone was Colin’s sympathy, the mystery, and most importantly his humanity. Cause that is what this damn movie was supposed to be about: how being human is painful and how the past causes that pain. And without those memories we lose our drive, and until we can recreate a relationship to who we are, either through the past or pushing ourselves through the present to create more past, we have no identity.

Suddenly Colin was lost forever in the wrappings of yesterday’s newspaper like a dead fish.

Yeah, you heard me, dead in the water. Like Korean white fish bones picked clean by a family of ten.

But Colin isn’t happy being dead because he’s bored, and his best friend and co-worker is contented. I mean, too damn happy, slap happy, all slanted and looking at you sideways all the time. Any time a man looks at you sideways like that and says it’s all good, you KNOW it ain’t.

collins, total recall.

But DAMN if the sets don’t look good, I mean spectacular. Beautiful. Like a naked Geisha on a hot summer day on a west coast yacht, pushing waves into Hong Kong. Giant Buddhas, tapestries and layer after layer of icing. And if you like sugar, and I do like my sugar, it’s a distracting sight to behold.

But like most cake with too much sugar it tastes thin. The sets look thin, built thin, sound thin. How can so many layers of cake still be thin tasting? It’s a reflection of an empty backstory that only surfaces as thin mystery, sliced like wafers, as to not confuse the audience even though they have seen this MF movie before.

“But it’s all good, the happy grinning Geisha, the grinning REKALL operator, grinning about all the fun they are having. His best friend grins, hell even his angry, murdering stand-in wife is grinning through her pent up rage of having Colin all up in her and shit. Hell, I swear I even saw Colin grinning a few times, thinking “Being cool isn’t that bad after all, see me make a lot of money”.

I mean, everyone is enjoying themselves so much, except me. I’m not!

3 boobs

Choppy sight gags ripped from the original Verhoeven film, CLUNK, to the plastic PLAY DOH floor, so hard it’s distracting, spliced in like porno frames. Three titties, NOT funny. Three hands? Hell I would just move one around quickly, I don’t want to be a freak like you.

See Colin run, see the choppy HoloProjection-Collar on Colin as he tries to escape to, I think to the other side of the earth, break and starts asking for ham sandwiches. Is tech this bad in the future?

Choppy breakaway sets, why is everything so breakable in the future… all made in China?

Break the super-future-plastic-glass of the car to yank out the gravity flux controller. Break through a floor and a glass window under your apartment steps to escape your lunatic wife, yeah ok, I DONE THAT a few times too. Only it wasn’t the MF future! Break elevator’s roofs open with your feet. Damn this future city is not meant to last and it just adds to the hollow sound of the movie and the shallow threats of all the blind shooting.

total-recall-remake-01.jpgDon’t even get me started on all the I-Robot bullshit. That’s too obvious a target, so I won’t even touch that level of unoriginality after spending a fortune on 3d Play Doh.

Yet Biel brings the one believable moment aside from Colin waking to the sound of money in a tent-pole project with loving acceptance in the movies opener. Biel SIGHS as their anti-gravity car plummets to it’s never-gonna-happen plastic crash into the 3d ground.

The sigh that escapes from her mouth brings a moment of reality and relief. I wanted Total Recall to become a French film in the future where Colin has rediscovered his love and the reason he turned on his violent masters is revealed, as over-whelming and as real as the reason Biel’s breath is taken from her.


But there’s no heat between them. The couple is cold, one shared kiss is bad lipstick and poorly timed. There’s no horizontal reunion or an alleyway of blissful remembrance that only pushing faces together creates.

Finally given the opportunity to regain his memories by the sudden appearance of bad-ass Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston, why the cult leader would don Kelvar and fight along with metal robots in a wild center of the earth travel log is a totally out-of-left-field moment. Someone glued that MF scene on, which sadly led to the obligatory knife scene at the end.

But, I digress. This is the turning point: Colin chooses to not regain his memories because he likes who he is now. He’s in love and he doesn’t want to lose that. He doesn’t want to be the bad man who his fake wife was trying to kill. He wants to be the good man that’s in love and fights for a cause that seems real.

Even in this unreal world where nothing could be real.

There should have been some Mc Loving between the trillion bullets bouncing off plastic white walls to make us believe the most ruthless spy in this poisoned, wounded world about to split in half could change, could deny all he had believed.

Excuse me, that better be some fine Biel Mc Loving to make me want to reject becoming the negative, bearded, piano-perched Colin talking-head hologram, assassin I used to be.

total-recall-remake-banner.jpgSo Colin decides to stop the Baddies and all their I-Robots from invading some small portion of the earth left on the other side of the planet, with some well placed hand bombs and a strong, knitted brow.

Don’t even get me started about Colin shooting the brother, his best friend, in the head because his new girlfriend shed a tear. Or why the movie is called Total Recall but in the movie itself it’s called Total Rekall.

And if making the baddest I-Robot BLACK in the end scene isn’t racist then I don’t know what is. I’m hoping at least that makes the MF in charge, or the scapegoat for the fiasco invasion since he is destroyed.

And what happened to Mars? I wanted to see me some damn future Mars!

Damn, if I still like me some MF Colins.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s