I'm not one for getting too pissed at the idea of remakes anymore. You could say that I'm burnt out, that I've gotten tired and broken-down, fighting the good nerdly fight against the suited vultures and succubi looking to feast on the glories of genre classics gone by. But that's only partially true. I also recognize that not every remake is an automatic affront on all taste and decorum, and that in some cases, remakes can be wonderful films on their own, different but just as valid, and in some rare cases, they're even better than the original.
None of that applies to what Sony just told me is the plot of their Total Recall remake:
Total Recall is an action thriller about reality and memory, inspired anew by the famous short story “We Can Remember It For You Wholesale” by Philip K. Dick. Welcome to Rekall, the company that can turn your dreams into real memories. For a factory worker named Douglas Quaid (Colin Farrell), even though he’s got a beautiful wife (Kate Beckinsale) who he loves, the mind-trip sounds like the perfect vacation from his frustrating life — real memories of life as a super-spy might be just what he needs. But when the procedure goes horribly wrong, Quaid becomes a hunted man. Finding himself on the run from the police — controlled by Chancellor Cohaagen (Bryan Cranston), the leader of the free world — Quaid teams up with a rebel fighter (Jessica Biel) to find the head of the underground resistance (Bill Nighy) and stop Cohaagen. The line between fantasy and reality gets blurred and the fate of his world hangs in the balance as Quaid discovers his true identity, his true love, and his true fate.
So, if I'm reading that right - there's no Mars in this movie. There's no Mars in a remake of Total Recall.
On top of this shit, the film will be PG-13, meaning that you're getting almost none of the gleeful, comic-book cartoon violence that made the Verhoeven film such fun to watch, so fun even nerds like myself had no problems ignoring that the script (by ALIEN writers Dan O'Bannon & Ron Shusett) was a pretty poor adaptation of Philip K. Dick's We Can Remember it For You Wholesale.
So instead of the long-awaited, glorious return of Kuato, a Kuato for our times, a Kuato in 3D, a 3D Kuato that makes up for all the trangressions against our eyes from years of crap 3D? We get a PG-13 mashup of The Running Man and Inception, made drab, dumb, and boring, directed by the guy who neutered Die Hard in 2007, whose previous cinematic accomplishments include "Dressing my wife in vinyl and gluing fangs to her teeth" and that's it, sure to waste the talents of Colin Farrell as Quaid, and Bryan Cranston as Cohaagen.
But hey, they're spending 200 million on it, so it can't be all bad, right?