Recalling Rekall

People have been going crazy about the run up to the Total Recall trailer. Is it a sign of the times now that we get excited about a “trailer for a trailer”, not excited about watching the actual film but the trailer? Last week I saw the 30 second “trailer for the trailer” of Total Recall that eventually went live last night. We’ve had this before with 4 trailers for the first trailer, and a hype trailer for trailer 2 of Prometheus; is trailer hype going to be a big thing now in film marketing? I’m for it, if the films any good.

I was a massive fan of the original Total Recall, it was one of my favourite films growing up, my parents even bought me a copy of it on VHS for my birthday; I would’ve been about 14 at this point but so what? Arnold was the biggest movie star on Earth and he seemed to only make 18 cert movies at that point. Having seen Predator or The Running Man or Commando brought serious playground bragging rights, it seems having irresponsible parents was cool back then; makes you wonder who the all grown up rule makers on responsible parenting were in playground hierarchy.
ImageWhen these films came out on VHS they were good, though not quite as good or visceral as Total Recall. Directed by Paul Verhoeven, fresh from the success of the ultra-violent Robocop (which I’ve written about before here), Total Recall was just as bloodthirsty and had an original enough storyline to keep you guessing while Arnold worked through his repertoire of shoot people, swear, look mean and beat people up. It even had a spectacular scene where Arnold used an innocent bystander’s body as a bulletproof shield which he then threw at some bad guys to make his getaway; my hero.

This new film has a lot on its shoulders. It’s been touted as “inspired anew by the famous short story “We Can Remember It For You Wholesale” by Philip K. Dick” to give it some leeway with the fanboy crowd to change things around a bit. That’s fine, but with 22 years’ worth of technology development, why does it look like the design team given the job of working on the remake of a film that in 1990 was known for having an original and distinct look went with “We’ll rip off Minority Report, Iron Man, BTTF 2 and Blade Runner” before calling it a day.

Will it be as good? Maybe, at the moment films simply aren’t allowed to be as good as the Arnold Total Recall. To be that good directors need to be allowed to take risks and the movie business is a very different animal in 2012 to the one that produced Total Recall in 1990. There’s no way Len Wiseman will have been allowed to take the risks necessary to elevate this remake to a level anywhere near as good as the original; especially with a film that’s got a reported budget of $200 million.  It’ll most likely cert at 12a or 15 at a push to maximise target audience and profit margins and though there’re strong rumours of an appearance by the triple breasted hooker, there’ll be no murderous midgets with machine guns or psychic tumorous growths.

One thing that did catch my eye this morning though was this totally unrelated NSFW gem that really made me giggle. Enjoy. Just to reinterate NSFW!