The Oddness of My Suspension of Disbelief as It Pertains to the Movie Total Recall

Isn’t it weird how things work out, right?

So today I was going through some of my DVDs and I came across a copy of The Recruit. And I said to myself (because I enjoy speaking to myself), “Hey, I should watch this.” It’s one of those DVDs I picked up never having seen the movie, back when it first came out, 2003?, watched it once, and then it languished for the next seven or eight years until today. And so I’m watching it, it’s playing right now, actually, and I think to myself, “Hey, Colin Farrell — I know he did an episode of Scrubs not that long ago, what else has he been doing lately?”

So I jumped on IMDB, and the first thing that caught my eye is that (I mean, according to IMDB at least) he’s playing Doug Quaid in a remake of Total Recall scheduled for release in 2012.

Total Recall’s just over twenty years old, came out back in 1990. If you’re not familiar with Paul Verhoeven, a lot of his movies — his best ones, anyway — are usually sci-fi with a lot of gore (he also did the one starring Jesse from Saved by the Bell who I’m pretty sure bared her breats, I’m not actually sure because I can’t keep that interested in the movie long enough to see if she actually does). For example, this scene from Robocop. Man, haven’t we all worked with people we’d love to have that happen to? Oh, I never have. Anyway.

So Total Recall is about this guy named Doug (the Governator) Quaid who operates heavy machinery in the late 21st Century. He goes to a place called Total Recall for a memory implant – basically, if you can’t afford to travel, you can pay a fee and have two weeks’ worth of memories dumped into your brain for whatever kind of trip you want. But something goes wrong during the memory implant, and Quaid suddenly finds that his quarry buddies, and his wife (Sharon Stone) want to kill him. He makes his way to Mars in an attempt to infiltrate the resistance (Mars is a dictatorship) and overthrow the evil Ronny Cox and his henchman Michael Ironside, who are sitting on a pretty big secret.

Look, in movies, I understand you’ve gotta suspend your disbelief a lot. And, honestly, with this movie, I can.

I can suspend my disbelief and not bat an eye that Sharon Stone might be able to beat the crap out of Arnold Schwarzenegger. I can believe that.

I can believe a woman can have three boobs. Actually, what bothers me most about this woman is do I find her attractive? Or not attractive? Because if two boobs are perfection, shouldn’t three be, I don’t know, heavenly? But then my mind says, but three boobs! What the fuck do you do with the third one?

I can believe that there is vast, ancient alien machinery buried under the surface of Mars that, when activated, will start a chemical reaction that will bring an atmosphere, and oxygen, to Mars.

I can even believe that when Arnold gets sucked out onto Mars’ surface and his hands and face and eyeballs start to bulge and threaten to explode, that once the alien machinery works and pumps out the oxygen, that he’ll immediately be ay-okay.

But what I can’t get my mind around — like seriously — is the bullets used in this movie.

So in this scene — where Quaid is escaping from his apartment and getting involved in a shootout on the subway, a human body is clearly sufficient to use as a shield against the small arms fire used by Michael Ironside’s Mars Gestapo.

But then! The same guns are capable of blowing out the windows on the Mars Colony, much to the displeasure of several of Marc Alaimo’s (i.e., Gul Dukat for those Trekkies reading this!) goons, who get sucked out the window. You get the feeling that if you just lean against the window too hard, it’d just shatter. I don’t know who Mars’ architect was, but I think the whole movie’d be improved if Michael Ironside walked into a door labeled “MARS ARCHITECT” and said to some bloke behind the desk, “Hey, are you the dumbass who put cheap glass everywhere?” and then shot the shit out of him.

Because. SERIOUSLY. If you’re going to build a structure on Mars, you’re probably going to make sure that it’s going to be able to stand up to being shot up by your trigger happy goons. Right?

One thought on “The Oddness of My Suspension of Disbelief as It Pertains to the Movie Total Recall

  1. C’mon… Mouth on the middle one, hands on the outer ones!

    Yeah… I’m a pig. And this comment probably shouldn’t pass moderation.

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