Those who were disappointed with the 2006 bare bones Blu-ray release of Total Recall will be overjoyed with this new “Mind-Bending Edition” from Lionsgate, the latest in a long line of home video releases. While a few features were left off from the DVD version, there’s a few new features that are absolutely fascinating to watch and at a price point under $10, it’s well worth picking up.
Genre(s): Science Fiction, Suspense, Thriller
Lionsgate | R – 113 min. – $14.99 | July 31, 2012
Directed by: Paul Verhoeven
Writer(s): Phillip K. Dick (short story); Ronald Shusett & Dan O’Bannon and Jon Povill (screen story), Ronald Shusett & Dan O’Bannon and Gary Goldman (screenplay)
Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rachel Ticotin, Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside, Ronny Cox
Theatrical Release Date: Release Date
Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Photo Gallery, Trailer
Number of Discs: 1
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 1.85
Subtitles: English SDH, French, German
Disc Size: 41.1 GB
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
THE MOVIE – 3.5/5
Plot Synopsis: Quaid (ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER) is a 2084 construction worker haunted by dreams of Mars. Against the wishes of his sexy blonde wife (SHARON STONE), Quaid goes to Rekall, a company that implants artificial memories, so he can “remember” visiting the red planet that is now being settled by human inhabitants. However, Quaid is actually a secret agent from Mars – or is he?
SPECIAL FEATURES – 4.0/5
This “Mind-Bending Edition” thankfully ports over most of the features from the 2001 special edition release, which the first Blu-ray failed to do (likely due to disc space at the time).
Audio Commentary – This track, featuring Director Paul Verhoeven and Star Arnold Schwarzenegger is fascinating as the pair chat about working on the movie and filming some of the scenes. It’s a fairly routine track as far as commentaries are concerned but it’s still interesting to listen to.
Interview with Director Paul Verhoeven (34:47; HD) – This extensive, and new, interview with Verhoeven recounts how he came to the project and how he approached directing the film, working with Schwarzenegger and some of the problems he had with the script. It’s an all around fascinating featurette that fans of cinema will enjoy. ** Mind-Bending Edition Exclusive **
Making-Of Featurette (8:23; SD) is a basic, and forgettable, EPK feature with behind-the-scenes footage and some general comments about the project.
Models and Skeletons: The Special Effects of Total Recall (23:15; HD) retrospective featurette takes a look at how the visual effects were accomplished at the time where those who worked on the project recount their experience and difficulties. Like the Verhoeven interview, this one too is actually really fascinating and wide-ranging. ** Mind-Bending Edition Exclusive **
Imagining Total Recall Documentary (31:29; SD) is a fine and extensive ‘making-of’ featurette which is far more expansive than the other one on the disc. You’ve got some old interviews with the cast and crew intermixed with behind-the-scenes footage as they talk about the project came about.
Restoration Comparison (5:13; HD) is a cool feature that compares the old transfer with this new one using a side swipe effect.
Also included is the Theatrical Trailer (2:07; HD) and Photo Gallery.
Previews – Haywire, The Expendables, Terminator 2 Blu-ray, Stargate Blu-ray
So, what’s missing? The Rekall’s Virtual Vacations, Visions of Mars, Storyboard Comparisons, Conceptual Art Gallery, TV Spots and the old school Production Notes and Cast/Crew Information were, for whatever reason, not ported over. Not a big deal and hardly a reason to keep your DVD around unless you’re a completist.
VIDEO – 5.0/5
Total Recall makes its second landing attempt on Blu-ray after a lackluster release in 2006. This edition gives audiences its original 1.85 theatrical widescreen presentation (the other was 2.35) and I have to say it’s a very nice and finely detailed transfer. There’s a fair amount of natural film grain that provides for a sharp picture and black levels also look great throughout. This is the proper transfer fans have been expecting and it’s just an all around incredible, and splendid, looking transfer.
AUDIO – 4.5/5
Also an upgrade over the previous release, which only had Dolby Digital EX and DTS-HD HR tracks, this Blu-ray receives a proper lossless 5.1 DTS-HD MA track which shows off the action scenes quite well but even the lower end of the spectrum such as dialogue and ambient noises come across nicely as well.
OVERALL – 4.0/5
Overall, those who were disappointed with the 2006 bare bones Blu-ray release of Total Recall will be overjoyed with this new “Mind-Bending Edition” from Lionsgate, the latest in a long line of home video releases. While a few features were left off from the DVD version, there’s a few new features that are absolutely fascinating to watch and at a price point under $10, it’s well worth picking up.