Total Recall - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Total Recall Reviews

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Super Reviewer
July 11, 2012
The most surrealistic, awesome, complex, gory, funny movie that Schwarzenegger has ever starred.
Super Reviewer
½ June 9, 2006
Loosely inspired by one of Philip K. Dick's stories, this is a superb sci-fi action thriller set in a dystopic 2084 about a construction worker named Quaid who decides to go on a 'vacation' by having memories of a secret agent fantasy implanted into his brain, only for things to go horribly awry...or maybe not.

Despite a few silly and cheesy moments, this is a wonderful, if violent action thriller that is both entertaining, and rather thought provoking. It really toys with that oft-used concept of blurring the line between what's real and what isn't, and this is one of the few films that actually does it quite well, with enough evidence to support multiple theories, with the true ending of the film dependent upon each viewer's own opinion.

Like many of Verhoeven's American films, it's got a lot of violence, but provides a lot of thought provoking ideas and material, often satirical, as well. It's all presented with some groundbreaking special effects (almost all of them done practically or in camera as opposed to CGI), a terrific score by Jerry Goldsmith, and some decent, if sometimes silly, but still fun performances. And let's not forget about the most memorable thing this film has to offer: a three-breasted mutant prostitute!

Definitely give this one a watch. It's not flawless, but it is remarkably strong, and easily one of both Verhoeven and Schwarzenegger's best films.
Super Reviewer
January 23, 2013
While not the classic that some have coined it, Total Recall is an entertaining and thought-provoking science fiction film with Paul Verhoeven's signature gory style adding an element of surprise and distinction among the genre. The story twists and turns its way around until finally leaving you with an ambiguous ending (similar to Inception's ending) that makes for a good conversation with someone when done viewing. The added element of the gory and creepy visuals that are a product of their time just add to the fun. These effects would not have been the same if CGI was used and would not have been as creepy, like seeing people's eyes pop out of their heads on Mars. The acting is enjoyable and humorous at times, with the cheekiness usually prevalent in Arnold's older films. A great story, solid action, and fantastic visuals add up to a film that any science fiction film can appreciate on different levels, whether it be the thought-provoking premise, or the masterful effects that won an Academy Award.
Super Reviewer
½ October 8, 2007
An old fashioned B-movie concerning a normal construction worker (Arnold Schwarzenegger) who finds out that he is in fact a secret agent for the government who has had a fake memory chip implanted in his head thinking he is living an alternate reality. Smart film boasts a wide range of spectacular visual effects that keep it interesting throughout. It does go a little overboard on the violence at times, but director Paul Verhoeven keeps this thing clicking along at a nice pace and has enough tricks up his sleeve both with his plot and visuals that it makes it a worthwhile watch in the end. Schwarzenegger's performance isn't the stuff of legends, it is strictly workmanlike, but hey, it gets the job done.
Super Reviewer
April 29, 2007
A strange action film, quite violent.
Super Reviewer
½ September 14, 2012
Construction worker Douglas Quaid begins to suspect he is a secret agent who has had his memory wiped clean; clues lead him to the Martian colonies, where mutant terrorists wage a guerrilla war against the government. Cheesy at times, with the usual one-liners, but the not-as-dumb-as-usual sci-fi plot makes this Schwarzenegger-in-space outing one of Ahnold's better action vehicles.
Super Reviewer
June 20, 2009
Get ready for the ride of your life. cause like, theres gonna be more rides, definitely, like driving your car everyday to work and Burger-Kings and, you remember the night at the carnival when you really wanted to kiss that Tiffany chick like super, and you bought tickets for the ferris wheel and she didn't even talk til you were to the very top. and now that i think of the title, it reminds me when i was calling her around midnight after halloween and she kept sending me to voicemail, but i didn't leave no message cause i aint no stalker, and i knew she forwarded me to voicemail too, the cunt, cause it only rand two and a half times. and i like, kept calling and calling but nothing. that was such a total recall. and what a total skank. and so Schwarziniggers fuckin this broad who looks like Sharon Stone and he gets all pussy-like and turns her over sideways and looks teary talkin bout how he aint never been to mars. fuck him. i aint been neither. i aint probably even seen movies about mars, but id be happier with tonsils grindin on Sharon Stone clit than a fucking red planet with not even enough water to drench her pussy back to full health after im done with it. and then he goes to his therapist and tells him he has dreams of running around on mars and Dr. Kats is like, "if you wanna go to mars, set up an appointment. but hes like, "fuck that" and machine guns more people than i've seen have sex in my life and then after he gets there, Urkle with a laser pointer drives him to mars bars in a fag cab. and this chick with three beautiful muffin bags and Schwarzinigger don't even suck one. anyway she gets shot and milk is spilling on the highway drowning possums and shit. but the capper is the guy in the mars lab basement talkin about "the key to quenching martians thirst is the red water" and he pulls up his shirt and this blackhead on his chest got so big that its letting out air at a speed where it sounds like words. that made me laugh and i was reminded of deaf retard #2 from The Ringer when he was trying to call for help.
Super Reviewer
½ October 3, 2010
It may not be the greatest science fiction film of all time, but "Total Recall" is the type of movie that you can sit back, relax and enjoy at any time, given that it can appeal to many audience members who are willing to witness a gory good time. When this film begins, Doug Quaid (Schwarzenegger) is deciding whether or not to go to a company known as Recall, which gives you memories for however long you want, and wherever you want them to be. Doug always dreams about Mars, so he is looking for an implantation of that world. The film takes many turns that I actually did not see coming, but in the end, it is one hell of a fantastic action/aci-fi feature. The dialogue is brilliantly witty, the action is incredible, the visuals are great for it's time, and the characters are well constructed. My only point to pick at the movie is that these characters never have enough chemistry, the scenes where they do, end up concluding a little too soon. Overall, "Total Recall" is one of my favourite Sci-fi films!
Super Reviewer
½ August 4, 2012
I'm gonna go watch the new "Total Recall" in the theater this weekend, so I decided to revisit the original first. I remember watching this when I was younger, but I really had only remembered two things. Girl with three boobs and peoples eyes popping out when they are outside on Mars. The story is pretty good and very creative. Set in the future a construction worker(Arnold Schwarzenegger) has vivid memories of Mars, even though he has never been there. So one day he decides to take a "mental vacation" at a place called Total Recall. Basically, this gives him two weeks worth of memories of an adventure he had on Mars. Things go wrong, and it's found out he isn't who he says he is, and neither is anyone in his life. Is he a secret agent, or is he still in Recall? Humorous and campy, the movie is dated, but it's still a fun rewatch. Arnold is great as always, but the rest of the cast is just "meh". The effects at the time this was made(1990) were groundbreaking and award winning, their pretty cheesy and laughable. Good retro sci-fi flick, that may not hold up as good as other movies. But, it's still decent. Hopefully the remake will be worthwhile.
Super Reviewer
½ August 3, 2012
Through a brilliant mix of camp, bloody violence, and intriguing ideas on both human nature and memory, Total Recall is a true sci-fi classic for its time. Without a doubt one of my favorite Arnold Schwarzenegger performances b/c he's got the perfect charm and camp to carry a role of this caliber. The gunplay is fast-paced and extremely entertaining, and famous last death of the film is a classic moment in sci-fi cinema. But I especially loved the satirical element that poked at human nature in the far future in addition to the insight of the memory, too. One of my favorite sci-fi films of all-time for sure!
Super Reviewer
August 2, 2012
Since the remake for Total Recall comes out tommorow, I figured I'll give my opinion on the original 1990 version. In Total Recall Arnold Schwarzenegger plays Doug Quaid, a man who discovers the life he's living isn't the real one. He has Sharon Stone as a wife, they seem to have a good life together, but he finds out that he's really a secret agent, so he travels to Mars to piece toogether his identity and find out who screwed with his memory. The whole going to Mars idea seems to be a campy spin to the movie, but it's a Schwarzenegger movie in the 90's. He's good at being in interesting movies, albeit, a little weird. Since it's a Schwarzenegger movie there are some one liners to be expected and one of his most memorable in this movie is "Consider it a divorce." It's cheesy, but also witty, as is the rest of the dialogue. The thing that this movie did really well was being able to add intrigue to the plot. Intrigue isn't an easy thing to pull off in movies, but the director, Paul Verhoeven, does it really well. The special effects in this movie also stand out. The dream sequence on Mars has the part where Arnold's eyes are popping out of his head when his helmet breaks. The special effects looked great on that scene and I always find myself laughing at Arnold's yell during that part. There's just something about his yell that makes me laugh. There's also a considerable body count for the movie. If you're a person that deosn't like too much violence in movies, then this movie might bother you. I didn't have too much of a problem with it though. The acting in this film is also really good. Arnold Schwarzenegger is at best, an average actor, but in this he fits for whatever reason. It may be the plot, but who knows? I also think Michael Ironside does great as Richter. When he's pissed at Arnold, he really is pissed, you can actually see the hatred in his eyes and it actually is kind of unsettling. The only gripe I have with the movie is the character development. Some of the characters were given something, but they didn't really end up in a different place as far as characters go. All that being said, Total Recall ended up being a really good science fiction movie. It's exciting, the acting is good, the action scenes are great, the speciall effects are fantastic, the intrique was pulled off, and the remake really does have its work cut out for it. There are actually 3 things in the original that I want to see done in the remake.
1. The eyes popping scene
2. The de-bugging scene
3. The prostitute with three breasts.
Super Reviewer
½ July 31, 2012
Super Reviewer
January 18, 2007
i hadnt seen the film in more than 10 years, and after a rewatch last night it has upgraded slightly in my mind but the lack of scientific accuracy and the extreme plot holes and logical mishaps takes what could have been a sci-fi juggernaut and knocks it down a bit.
Super Reviewer
April 15, 2012
Worth it to see the famed space hooker with three tits.
paul o.
Super Reviewer
½ February 20, 2012
Its really silly but its actually really good as well. Verhoeven makes sure that this film doesn't take itself too seriously which makes it likable but also memorable.
Super Reviewer
August 20, 2011
It was an okay movie. Obviously 90's movies would be hard to impress nowadays.
Super Reviewer
½ October 2, 2011
Geez, the remakes are coming so fast these days that it almost seems like the minute a movie wraps, someone else is picking up the script to reshoot. Ridiculous. This movie is one of Schwarzenegger's best, and I just love the "consider that a divorce" line when Sharon Stone gets what's coming to her. Whatever happened to Rachel Ticotin? She is hot : ) Ronny Cox sure knows how to play villains. He is beyond nasty in this one. For kicking over the fish tank alone, he deserves what he gets. Note how the close up of those poor fish gasping for air prefigures Cox's own happy ending? And who can forget the lady with the exploding head? My favorite line? Gotta be See you at the Pahty, Richter : ) The most important thing I learned from this movie is that if you pretend to be in a dream, never let em see you sweat. Mind-blowing : )
Super Reviewer
½ June 14, 2006
In many regards a typical 80s/90s Schwarzenegger vehicle, this film has a lot more to offer below the surface. While being a fast-paced, breathless sci-fi action thriller the story behind it has a few interesting layers about reality, memories and dreams. The film does have its strongest moments when our protagonist is asked to question if he is still living in a fake memory or is part of a huge conspiracy. The make-up effects look a but dated and tacky by now, but at least they are imaginative and freaky, as you'd expect from a film set on Mars. While the solution is a bit silly, it is at least larger than life and spectacular. Surprisingly smart action cinema from a different era of film making. We'll see how the remake compares 2012.
Super Reviewer
½ September 6, 2010
You can see the beginnings of 90s sci-fi styles here, I think. Anyway, this movie is a great adventure, and I really liked it.
Super Reviewer
½ August 1, 2009
What the what? Strange goings-on on Mars as directed by resident crazy person Paul Verhoeven. Full review later.
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