Today is the premiere of Len Wiseman‘s Total Recall. Considering that the whole world thinks of Arnold Schwarzenegger every time the words Total Recall are uttered, Colin Farrell has some big biceps to fill. And considering the original is not known for much scientific/plot consistency, some of the more outlandish leaps that this remake achieves are pretty impressive. Here are some of the more ridiculous things that happen in this version of Total Recall.
1. There is a subway that goes through the world.
The premise of this Total Recall is that the world has become 90% uninhabitable. Rather than reach out to other worlds to keep the population of Earth alive (the original created a colony on Mars), architects have simply built up. The two places left are modern adaptations of England and Australia, filled with vertical homes. It looks a little bit like Terry Gilliam‘s Brazil, though you never really get to see how tall these two cities would have to be to accommodate the population of Earth. However, the most implausible part of this futureland is the subway. Wiseman has created a massive shuttle that travels through the core of earth to transport workers between The Colony (Australia) and The United Federation of Britain (England). Considering it’s taken three decades to build one piece of the Second Avenue subway in NY, do you really think we can figure out how to dig through the core of the earth to send people to work on the other side of the world every morning?
2. England has survived the world apocalypse.
In the near distant future, the world has become mostly uninhabitable. OK. Fine. But it’s pretty hard to believe that the only places that would survive are England and Australia. Maybe Australia would make it, because it’s an entire continent and known for handling crazy animals and geography. Australia the colony is basically an overgrown Chinatown. Fine. Looks kind of cool actually. But England surviving any sort of tectonic shift in the environment is a pretty far stretch. I know Wiseman is from England, but come on. English people on the whole are way too bookish, pasty and weak to make it through any sort of major reckoning.
We’ve already talked about how weird Kate Beckinsale has been looking lately. Clearly she’s had some work done to maximize her hotness. And it mostly worked. Except she starting to fall into the uncanny valley/blow up doll territory:
9. Kate Beckinsale is definitely sleeping with the director.
Unlike in the original, the role of Doug’s wife has been expanded beyond reason. Kate Beckinsale plays a woman who is Cohaagen’s lead henchwoman. She appears and reappears to pursue Colin Farrell and Jessica Biel to the death. Her chase wavers between Terminator and Fatal Attraction levels of persistence. It doesn’t make sense in the script for her to appear, and reappear and stick to her commands to kill Hauser when she disregards other orders. But clearly the director (her husband) liked seeing her on screen.
10. The woman with three boobs
This is one of the many nods to the original. Who doesn’t love seeing a lady with three boobs on screen? Except in this version it kind of makes no sense. In the original Total Recall, the world has run out of space and people need to live on Mars. But the air quality kills people and causes mutations. Hence, there’s a prostitute with three boobs.
In this version? The colony is basically in Australia. But it’s the future. So I guess it would be awesome for ladies to have three breasts? Ok. Fine, I’ll give that one a pass. Here’s more of Colin Farrell trying to listen for the road:
(Photos: Total Recall: Columbia Pictures. Boob lady, Comic Con)