Total Recall: Yet Another Remake...

Man, he doesn't go to Mars? The end of that movie was, like, the dumbest thing ever. I want to point and laugh again!

It's still funny, even after all these years. A giant machine was able to generate enough atmosphere to pressurize an entire planet before the protagonist died from vacuum exposure. Even if you grant that it might just be local pressure, the wind speeds should have been so extreme that it would have instantly sandblasted both of them to goo.

With the gore in that movie, it would probably have fit right in, too.

I've decided to remake the AV Club's opinion on the trailer, but updated for today's modern audiences:

A SpacePPoliceman Reaction, inspired by the Reaction of the AV Club wrote:

Here is the actual trailer for Len Wiseman’s remake of Total Recall, which comes on like its own sudden rush of vaguely familiar memories. BRAAAAAWM! Much of the preview feels like a shadow version of Paul Verhoeven’s 1990 film, in fact, with slight glitches in the playback: The glimpses of Colin Farrell’s home life with Kate Beckinsale, conversations about “messing with your mind” with his drinking buddy, the look of the Rekall chair, and Farrell crashing through a security checkpoint all seem lifted nearly verbatim from the Schwarzenegger film. BRAAAAAAWM! But then a blond John Cho shows up, some Mass Effect soldiers storm in, and the whole thing skitters off into a futuristic, flying-car-addled play on The Bourne Identity, which matches nicely with the Dude Takes Down Cops and is Shocked By His Sudden Lethal Prowess lift from the same movie, with the soundtrack’s incessant bwaaaaaaamp-ing adding yet another layer of warmed-over repetition. BRAAAAAWM! Bryan Cranston CHNK! means I'll see CHNK! it at CHNK! my CHNK cinema CHNK! pub, CHNK! where CHNK! beer CHNK! and CHNK! nachos CHNK! will CHNK! make CHNK! up CHNK! for CHNK! the CHNK! overall indifference. BOOOOOOSH! Title

Thin_J wrote:

To be clear I don't think the old Verhoeven movie is all that great either. It's fun and all but there's plenty of bad acting in there among other things. I don't have some crazy attachment to it. I don't even own a copy of the movie in any form.

I on the other hand, have the special edition one with Mars case. It's my 2nd favorite movie case behind my Iron Man DVD Mask.

I guess I didn't see the point. It looked almost exactly like the first one with better special effects. I assume from comments here that the story varies a bit but was the story so good it really called for a redo?

Jayhawker wrote:

I see what you mean.

This trailer looks like such a smarter film. Not silly action at all.

The rose-colored glasses in here are pretty damn powerful. I absolutely loved the first one, but the idea that it was marketed as anything other than an action thrill ride is silly. And remake is due since the effects in the first one don't hold up well at all.

That is not to say that the remake won't fail. But judging it by that trailer seems questionable.

My rose-colored glasses are officially smudged. Ye gods that trailer is awful.

Well, the haterade is flowing freely in here. I bet you guys didn't like Wrath of the Titans either!

Quintin_Stone wrote:

The constant remaking of movies only like 20 years old just continues to highlight the creative void in Hollywood. And if it's not a remake, it's an adaptation of some other IP. Meh, are they really all out of ideas over there?

I'm not completely opposed to the idea of remakes. But there are certain questions should be answered in the affirmative before they go forward. Like, is the original still accessible to modern audiences? Are the special effects of the original too dated to do justice to the story?

I don't think the issue is so much that they're out of ideas, but out of the will to take a financial risk on them.

AnimeJ wrote:
Quintin_Stone wrote:

The constant remaking of movies only like 20 years old just continues to highlight the creative void in Hollywood. And if it's not a remake, it's an adaptation of some other IP. Meh, are they really all out of ideas over there?

I'm not completely opposed to the idea of remakes. But there are certain questions should be answered in the affirmative before they go forward. Like, is the original still accessible to modern audiences? Are the special effects of the original too dated to do justice to the story?

I don't think the issue is so much that they're out of ideas, but out of the will to take a financial risk on them.

And why should they? Hollywood is not in the business of pushing back the boundaries of cinema as an art-form. It's in the business of making sh*t-tons of money.

I don't see "It'll make a lot of money!" as a very compelling reason for me to be super jazzed.

Heretk wrote:
BadKen wrote:

Well, the haterade is flowing freely in here. I bet you guys didn't like Wrath of the Titans either!

Classic was good in it's day. Doesn't hold water now. Remake suuuuucked.

Seriously. Who releases a Kraken? You're supposed to let loose one.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

I don't see "It'll make a lot of money!" as a very compelling reason for me to be super jazzed.

Do you own an iPhone?

Quintin_Stone wrote:

The constant remaking of movies only like 20 years old just continues to highlight the creative void in Hollywood.

That's not fair. There are plenty of creative people in Hollywood, they're just not employed by Hollywood.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

I don't see "It'll make a lot of money!" as a very compelling reason for me to be super jazzed.

That isn't how it works. Hollywood looks at properties they expect a lot of people to be super-jazzed about and puts those into production because they'll be more likely to make money.

So, looking at this summer's line-up: The Avengers, Men in Black 3, Madagascar 3, Prometheus, G.I. Joe, Spider-Man, Ice Age 3, The Dark Knight, The Bourne Legacy, Total Recall, The Expendables 2—all of these got picked up because people were excited about (and spent money on) their predecessors. Hollywood isn't expecting you to be super-jazzed about their profits but about Ridley Scott making another Alien movie and Christopher Nolan making another Batman and the Avengers all kicking ass together and a new Jason Bourne movie, etc., etc.

And Hollywood is making movies that aren't sequels or remakes, but they're sorta lost in the shuffle: The Dictator, Rock of Ages (film adaptation of a musical, but still), Snow White and the Huntsman, I Hate You, Dad, Jack the Giant Killer, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Brave, Ted, Neighborhood Watch, Here Comes the Boom, Southern Rivals, ParaNorman.

Here's what's interesting: which of those lists has more dedicated threads here at GWJ? There's certainly far more excitement for movies in the first list than movies in the second. (Also, the second list tends to be comedies, which are cheaper to produce by far than animated movies and action flicks.)

Of course Hollywood's logic isn't that I'll be super jazzed. But all too often the response to criticism is "Whaddya expect? They're about making money!" as if I'll suddenly say "Oh, this doesn't look boring and pointless after all, in that light, I guess I'll help."

Jonman wrote:
SpacePPoliceman wrote:

I don't see "It'll make a lot of money!" as a very compelling reason for me to be super jazzed.

Do you own an iPhone?

Nope.

farley3k wrote:

I guess I didn't see the point. It looked almost exactly like the first one with better special effects. I assume from comments here that the story varies a bit but was the story so good it really called for a redo?

Yes. The first movie was fun, and had a great story.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

But all too often the response to criticism is "Whaddya expect? They're about making money!" as if I'll suddenly say "Oh, this doesn't look boring and pointless after all, in that light, I guess I'll help."

I don't think anyone is expecting you to change your mind.

Then why bring it up? It's not exactly a stunning insight, or a particularly credible response. We all know the steps to the money dance.

Why bring this up? It's not exactly a stunning insight, or a particularly novel complaint. We all know the steps to the money dance.

AnimeJ wrote:
Quintin_Stone wrote:

The constant remaking of movies only like 20 years old just continues to highlight the creative void in Hollywood. And if it's not a remake, it's an adaptation of some other IP. Meh, are they really all out of ideas over there?

I'm not completely opposed to the idea of remakes. But there are certain questions should be answered in the affirmative before they go forward. Like, is the original still accessible to modern audiences? Are the special effects of the original too dated to do justice to the story?

I don't think the issue is so much that they're out of ideas, but out of the will to take a financial risk on them.

I really, really liked the original. The only reason I posted that trailer was that i thought it was silly that people were using trailer for the remake to make some really large assumptions about what they were doing with the movie.

I expect the new movie to be a mindf*ck kind of experience, like the first one. Doesn't mean it will, or they wil pull it off. I just have no idea how that trailer convinced some people that it was going to be a standard action flick.

Thin J has a valid point about the director, but I think most would look at the Underworld Movies and the last Die Hard as being the kind of films that would get a director ready for a big summer blockbuster with plenty of effects. I'm not looking for a masterpiece, just a fun scifi story with booms and crazy.

It's a Philip K Dick story. It ought to provide the director with the tools to get weird.

I'd say it has a 10% chance of being awesome, and a 20% of being awful. It will probably just be fun.

Interesting to compare this against Lockout (and the reaction to this), which owes a lot to Escape from New York, but isn't strictly a remake.

Also doesn't Philip K. Dick have lots of other books that need making? I'm sure there's probably some rights thing going on, where they only have them for so many years so they might as well.

BadKen wrote:

Well, the haterade is flowing freely in here. I bet you guys didn't like Wrath of the Titans either!

Classic was good in its day. Doesn't hold water now. Remake suuuuucked.

OMG! The trailer is great!

Having a life implanted where Kate Beckinsale is your wife isn't exactly the worst fate ever.

mooosicle wrote:

Having a life implanted where Kate Beckinsale is your wife isn't exactly the worst fate ever.

Yeah, but then you have Jessica Biel it becomes a tough choice. Or not. I guess it is win-win!

I rewatched the original Total Recall about a year ago. I thought it was still great. Lots of fun. Falls under the genre of "Arnie Movies". That was a good genre.

My only fear is that they're going to make it PG-13.

Gorilla.800.lbs wrote:

My only fear is that they're going to make it PG-13.

You didn't follow this link from a couple pages back did you? I thought it had been mentioned in the thread and was going to call you a skimmer ;), but no, it was in that AV Club article.

madgadabout wrote:

Despite the "new take" the remake is still going to rip off some of the most memorable scenes. Av Club spots this important issue in their article titled "Don't worry, the new Total Recall will have a three-breasted woman." Seriously?! If it's a new interpretation, it's a new interpretation. If it's a craptastic, water-downed politics-instead-of-scifi rewrite, at least leave my beloved mutants alone and don't try to cram them into New Shanghai or Euromerica with Collin Farrell. If you're wondering what I'm talking about, read the IMDB synopsis.

AVClub wrote:

Len Wiseman’s Total Recall remake jettisons so many of the things that make it recognizably Total Recall—the Mars plot, the Schwarzeneggerian wit, the R rating—

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

Then why bring it up? It's not exactly a stunning insight, or a particularly credible response. We all know the steps to the money dance.

It's a very credible response to the initial comment that it was responding to, when Q-Stone said "it highlights the creative void in Hollywood", which is a BS complaint. Hollywood is awash in creative scripts and screenplays, and 99.9% of them don't get greenlit and put into production, because of all the aforementioned and apparently common-knowledge steps in the money dance.

Scratched wrote:

Also doesn't Philip K. Dick have lots of other books that need making? I'm sure there's probably some rights thing going on, where they only have them for so many years so they might as well.

They're probably running out. There are at least three other PKD-inspired movies: Paycheck, Imposter, and A Scanner Darkly.

Also, Adjustment Bureau