by Tony Medley
OK for children.
I don't like
movies set in a bleak future. I don't like movies that are dark and
basically devoid of trees and blue water. I don't like movies with lots
of robots and machines. This movie is set in a bleak future, is dark and
basically devoid of trees and blue water and is filled with robots and
machinery. But I liked it.
Why did I like
it? Based on Philip K. Dick's short story, "We Can Remember It For You
Wholesale," and a remake of the 1990 Arnold Schwarzenegger film of the
same name, it's a rip-snorting, nonstop, high tension experience that
starts fast and ends faster. The acting by Colin Farrell and Jennifer
Biel is very good. Kate Beckinsale is beautiful but her acting is so
over the top it seemed like it was camp at times.
Instead of using
Mars, however, director Len Wiseman kept the characters on earth, but an
earth in the future that has been devastated by chemicals and has only
two living areas, United Federation of Britain and The Colony (which
looks like it must be Australia from the map).
Farrell lives in
The Colony, basically a slum, and travels underground to work in
Britain, which is where all the upper crust live. "Rekall" is a place
you can go to create memories that will make your life better, maybe.
That's what Farrell does and while he's preparing for the treatment, all
hell breaks lose, his life changes, and it's nonstop action from there
until the end.
Farrell is a
terrific actor and carries the perplexion of his character off
perfectly. He's aided by good performances by Biel, Bill Nighy (who
appears in so few scenes his role is little more than a cameo), and
Bryan Cranston, who plays the bad guy who rules Britain and wants to
annihilate The Colony.
The only fly in
the ointment is Beckinsale's performance. It's hard to tell whether it's
Beckinsale's fault or Wiseman's. Somebody should have seen it in the
dailies and toned it down.
But that wasn't
enough to ruin the film for me.