“To call the remake of Total Recall a movie is like saying that watching your brother play Call of Duty qualifies as a cinematic experience,” The Observer preached to a small cluster of friends as we made our way from the Chelsea Cinema screening to No. 8 for the after party.
In fact, the movie had been one of the worst things we’d ever seen…to call it a film is really giving it too much justice; the entire 118 minutes was made up of Colin Farrell trading machine fire with a bunch of droids from I, Robots on the Death Star while occasionally mumbling “But I don’t even know who I am.”
We hated to say it, but Arnold did it better.
“Oh yeah, and what was up with the leader of the rebellion? It was just some old guy,” Twilight‘s Chaske Spencer sighed. (In fact, no spoilers, but don’t be looking for any “Quaid, start the reactor!” moments out of this almost-silent film.)
“God, that was Bil Nighy,” We shook our head over the wasted talent in the movie: Mr. Nighy, Bryan Cranston, the Asian guy from Harold and Kumar…
“Hah, the science guy?”
“No, that’s Bill Nye…this was the guy from the third Pirates of the Caribbean,” we said, because we know a lot about great films.
“Oh, he was awesome in that,” another friend responded.
“He was a talking octopus in that,” we said. “But yes, it was a much better role.”
Even Recall’s star Jessica Biel seemed embarrassed to be involved in Recall, showing up late to the screening and leaving the theater two minutes after the movie started. Nor was she to be found at the after party, though we did literally bump into Vivica A. Fox at the bar, who mistook our hips hitting each other as a sign that we were dancing.
“Yeah, get down girl!” the actress encouraged, shaking like a maraca. We used the opening to ask her what she had thought of the film.
“Absolutely loved it!” she effused. “Just a really great action film.”
Teen nymph Sami Gayle gave practically the same response, though we gave her a pass because she was too young to have seen the original. (And if that didn’t make us feel old and creepy, the fact that we noticed that she had her braces removed sure did.)
Kathleen “Kick” Kennedy eyed us warily before telling us that she also loved the movie. Were we in bizarro land? Had anyone else actually watched that thing?
Finally, her Newsroom co-star Thomas Matthews revealed the problem. “I loved the movie,” he said dutifully. When we asked how that was humanely possible, the mop-top actor shrugged.
“You never know who you’re talking to at these things,” he said. “If you ask me how the movie was, you might be working for their publicity department.”
Very clever, Mr. Matthews. We asked him what it was like to work with Aaron Sorkin.
“It’s great,” he replied, automatically sliding back into positive sound-byte mode. “He really takes time with each of us on set. And we’re actually going over to his house on Sunday to watch the new episode!”
Hey, even Sorkenese is better than sitting through the mind-numbing sludge of Recall.
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