Friday, August 17, 2012

So, I saw the Total Recall remake this week.

You don't have to see the Total Recall remake.

Here's a quick comparison:
  • The Hero: Arnie or Colin Farrell? Arnie, obviously. He might be big and dumb, but he knows how to use it to his advantage. Colin Farrell may be a fine actor, but as an action her he's fucking boring. Original: 1, remake: 0.
  • The Wife: Sharon Stone or Kate Beckinsale? Sorry Ms. Stone, you were very pretty in the early '90s, but Ms. Beckinsale is absolutely gorgeous even at the ripe age of 39. Also, spectacular ass. Original: 1, remake: 1.
  • The Bad Guy: Michael Ironside or Kate Beckinsale? Sorry Ms. Beckinsale, if this were a "who would you rather get an over-the-pants handjay from?" type of contest you'd be a sure winner, but playing a good villain takes the kind of awesomeness only creepy-looking character actors like Mr. Ironside possess. Original: 2, remake: 1.
  • The Girlfriend: Rachel Ticotin or Jessica Biel? Well, I'm not a huge Jessica Biel fan, but even I have to admit that these two don't even belong to the same species. Seriously Mr. Verheoven, what were you thinking? Original: 2, remake: 2.
  • The Über Villain: Ronny Cox or Bryan Cranston? Mr. Cox did a fine job in the original, but Bryan Cranston is a fucking god, so even though his character doesn't really do much in the remake, it's not like he can lose to anyone. Original: 2, remake: 3. (oh noes!)
  • Special Effects #1: how good did they look? The original movie used rubber puppets and stop-motion animation. The remake uses state-of-the-art technology and has the kind of realistic look that I'm guessing will still seem convincing even in 22 years. Original: 2, remake: 4. (dafuq!?)
  • Special Effects #2: how cool were they? The original movie used rubber puppets and stop-motion animation that were totally awesome! The effects were weird and funny and unlike anything else seen at the time. The remake uses state-of-the-art technology, but as long as your futuristic world looks like every other sci-fi movie that's out there, what's the point? Sure, the movie is technically perfect, but that doesn't mean it isn't utterly boring to look at. Original: 3, remake: 4.
  • Story: The original wasn't very faithful to the Philip K. Dick short story, but it did have Mars in it. The remake doesn't even have that. It's like someone had an idea for a generic sci-fi thriller about a giant elevator that travels through the center of the planet, but couldn't get it picked up until he rewrote it as a Total Recall remake. Nice try, but no thanks. Original: 4, remake: 4.
  • Gore and Nudity: The original was an R-rated Paul Verhoeven film. The remake is a PG-13 joke directed by Kate Beckinsale's husband, where people get shot and there's never any blood in sight. You do get one quick shot of the triple-boobied hooker, but it's so brief you can easily miss it if you blink at the wrong time. Original: 5, remake: 4.
  • Fun: The original Total Recall was a blast. The new remake is so generic and yet it takes itself so seriously that mostly it just made me want to take a nap in the theater and get the hell out once the credits came up. Original: 6, remake: 4.
Final Verdict: If you're craving some Total Recall goodness, the 1990 Paul Verhoeven film looks pretty amazing on blu-ray. Len Wiseman's remake, however, turns a true classic into something that is so mundane you'd forget it the second you leave the theater. He should just keep making movies where his wife wears fake fangs and tight outfits. You can never go wrong with that sort of stuff.

If you don't think that this rugged and manly individual is a GOD, then the atheists win!

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