Film Synopsis (courtesy of Sony Pictures):
For a factory worker named Douglas Quaid, even though he’s got a beautiful wife who he loves, the mind-trip sounds like the perfect vacation from his frustrating life – real memories of life as a super-spy might be just what he needs. But when the procedure goes horribly wrong, Quaid becomes a hunted man as he finds himself on the run from the police.
Total Recall is inspired anew by the short story “We Can Remember It For You Wholesale” by Philip K. Dick. I am a huge fan of the original 1990 film and really looked forward to seeing what this re-imagining had to offer. I was hoping that there would not be enough of a deviation from the original so not to feel like a re-telling of a movie I love but more of a reshoot. Unfortunately for me, that is not the case. On the other hand, I’m also happy to report that although it’s not a re-shoot, the retelling of the story is quite compelling. Of course there are more similarities than not involving the plot however the script omits and adds elements that establish a degree of satisfying variance… and it truly pays off.
Regardless whether you prefer to original or otherwise (I like them both equally) there is action galore and the first rate production elements underscored by amazing execution and well placed cast selection in Kate Beckinsale, Colin Farrell and Jessica Biel. This is saying a lot considering I don’t particularly like Colin Farrell or Jessica Biel.
This movie’s visual style doesn’t lend itself to eye catching color or infinite levels of dimension but this is a creative decision that doesn’t reflect negatively on its presentation. However, this is a welcome offering for me who likes movies to look more filmlike rather than the pop-out colours of video-game-like presentation. The filtered chromatic range is purposefully limited to muted colour palette. Couple that with the drab lighting schemes and dark cinematography makes for a thematically affective tone just like the original Total Recall.
The Dolby TrueHD 5.1 channel surround mix is of a true demonstration quality and sure to please those who like to play their systems at reference level. The wide dynamic range boasts extreme clarity and high level details that is noteworthy of THX certification.
Whether or not you love this genre, this movie is a must buy if you are of any type of home theatre enthusiast.
Studio and Year: Columbia Pictures – 2012
MPAA Rating: PG-13/Unrated
Feature running time: 118 minutes/130 minutes
Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 2.40:1
Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 5.1,
French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Jessica Biel, Bryan Cranston, Bokeem Woodbine, Bill Nighy
Directed by: Len Wiseman
Music by: Harry Gregson-Williams
Written by: Kurt Wimmer and Mark Bomback
Region Code: A,B,C
Blu-ray Disc release Date: December 18, 2012
Equipment used for this review:
Anthem MRX-700 Receiver
Darbee Darblet DVP-5000 Visual Presence Processor
Grandviewscreen 96” 21:9 matte-white 1.0-gain screen
Kimber Kable 19e HDMI Cables
PSB Century 300i (front and surround speakers)
PSB Image C5 (centre speaker)
PSB Subseries 300 (subwoofer)
Panasonic PT-AE8000U projector
Pioneer BDP-62FD Blu-ray Player
Vermouth Black Curse Speaker Wires
Viewing room is as per THX and SMPTE recommendation with 45-degree Field of View