Total Recall 2012 (movie review)

Thirty percent of critics gave Total Recall (the 2012 remake) a positive review. That sounds about right.

I wouldn’t say this new version of Total Recall is terrible, but it certainly doesn’t live up to the original. I think if they gave this another decade of space, maybe I would have felt differently… or just been too old to remember how I felt the first time around. I had no ambition to see this movie, but then I saw the trailer and it did kinda get my attention. At the very least, I liked the look of the world, the production design. There’s some cool stuff in the original, but some of those shots in the trailer grabbed me. (The highway stuff looks cool right? There’s certainly nothing like that in the original – not that their could be…) Then, as circumstances would have it, I got to see it for free on a plane.

So, here we are.

First and foremost, this new twist on the original (which is apparently a closer adaptation to the original short story) doesn’t deliver in the story department. There are too many gaps in my memory because I just didn’t care very much about the plot or the characters involved.
Speaking of the characters, let’s talk about the actors – what an incredible waste of talent. Colin Farrell as the lead, Kate Beckinsale as his wife, Jessica Biel as Hauser’s friend, Bryan Cranston as the Chancellor and Bill Nighy as the leader of the resistance. Cranston and Nighy are not necessarily miscast, but boy, are these characters flat. It’s kind of insulting to everyone to tease us with such excellent performers and then have them play such boring characters.

As best as I can recall, the film isn’t structurally flawed, just not especially well executed. This new version of Total Recall is for action fans only. I’m giving it a 6 out of 10 – I’m sure this will be the last time I ever think about this flick.

About Jamie Insalaco

Jamie Insalaco is the author of, and editor in chief of

Posted on January 20, 2015, in movie review and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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