Total Recall: Movie Review | Christian Movie Reviews, Music, Books and Game Reviews for Teens

Total Recall: Movie Review

Life is complex, but this movie has just taken it to a whole new level.

Recently, a friend reminded me to watch the trailer for the 1993 version of Total Recall. A chiseled Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sharon Stone, complete with a 90s permed hair-do greeted me. The props were bad, and the cuts worse – how far Hollywood has come over the past 19 years!

In 2012’s Total Recall, we have buildings and dwellings which hang in mid-air, magnetic roads with hovercraft-like vehicles, androids as the police force, and a limited amount of land for humans to live in.

The movie settles the viewer really well into a post-apocalyptic Earth, with two major places of human inhabitation – the United Federation of Britain and The Colony (formerly known as Australia).

A complicated story

The storyline tries to draws a parallel line with modern human life, with the question of “Is there more to life than this?” just begging to be asked throughout the first 10-15 minutes of the film. Our main character, Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell) meets his colleague at the local watering hole and talks about life – eventually convincing himself to try a memory altering program, Rekall.

This is where the story goes all over the place.

Alternating between science fiction and action, the movie seems confused about which path to take, and as a result, I felt like I was being pulled in different directions, never settling in one for long. Maybe this was exactly how the filmmakers wanted me, as part of the audience to feel, but it didn’t make for pleasant movie viewing.

Who are we meant to be?

As the movie starts to evolve, Douglas Quaid realises he is not who he thinks he is – with his memory reprogrammed, Quaid struggles to hold onto what he believes is real and battles to decide between what is right and what is wrong.

This transformation and realisation is akin to when we first understand God as clear as a bell, or the first time we feel a strong urge from the the Holy Spirit to not sin, but to live God's way.

As a result of sin and “reprogramming” based in the flesh, many in the world remain hidden and blinded to the spiritual world. However, once the spiritual scales have fallen off our eyes, and we understand who God through Jesus Christ, night becomes day and we can “see” in the spiritual dimension.

It is when we call upon the name of Jesus Christ that we are saved, God comes into our hearts and the Holy Spirit begins a work in us – we need faith for God to complete His work (Philippians 1:6). In the process, like Douglas Quaid, we start to realise who we are truly supposed to be.