Total Recall

Published June 8, 2020

Total Recall

Film info

  • Title Total Recall
  • Director Paul Verhoeven
  • Year 1990
  • Run time 1hr 53m
  • Genres Action, Science Fiction, Adventure
  • Tagline They stole his mind, now he wants it back

Arnold Schwarzenegger is perfectly cast as Quaid, a 2084 construction worker haunted by dreams of Mars in this crowd-pleasing science fiction spectacle. Against the wishes of his sexy blonde wife (Sharon Stone), Quaid goes to Rekall, a company that implants artificial memories, so he can 'remember' visiting the red planet that is now being settled by human inhabitants. However, Quaid is actually an amnesiac secret agent from Mars - or is he?

Live blog

Time Comment
4:25 He has a nightmare? I’m going to have nightmares about that!
6:46 “No wonder you’re having nightmares, you’re always watching the news.”
10:17 I sort of disagree with the premise that it’s a memory.
14:57 I’d take a vacation from myself.
17:28 It’s like Create-A-Sim.
19:43 That’s the sort of dosage you’d need to sedate the Hulk.
27:02 “Your whole life is just a dream.”
35:26 People all seem very prepared to argue with him, despite the size of him and the fact he’s wearing a towel on his head.
36:27 Johnnycab is basically a version of Siri. “Would you please repeat the request?”
41:30 I knew he couldn’t run around the rest of the film with a towel on his head but still. Gross.
46:44 You’d think a head of intelligence or security or whatever this guy is would know better than to shoot bullets on Mars.
51:08 A Hilton on Mars. Love it.
1:02:30 “She’s real because you dreamed her?”
1:06:17 Mars rage.
1:10:47 I’m surprised they didn’t make their dome of bulletproof glass. You’d think it’d need to be quite strong.
1:19:13 That is so weird.
1:20:18 And very creepy.
1:30:20 Melina’s awesome.


Total Recall is a new experience in our film watching adventure, as it’s the first movie where we did technically get to the end but it is still unrated. The reason? I had to fast-forward the final few minutes because… bleurgh.

I should have known from the beginning, with the eye-bursting visual, but I spent a good portion of this movie shielding my eyes from the horrors on screen. It’s a good story, the premise is great, and I love that you don’t really know what to believe. Some really solid ideas but the execution was not to my tastes… I couldn’t hack it at all, especially the last ten minutes waiting for the atmosphere to clear.

Post-watching research shows that this movie won all kinds of awards for its special effects, but for me, it was too much, unnecessarily gross.

Rating: Unrated

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