Watched Aug 04, 2012
I was totally on board though most of this film, but unfortunately things kind of fall apart a bit at the end. The production design and special effects I loved and are very impressive – though a lot is borrowed from “Blade Runner,” “Minority Report” (a lot), and other films. The gun-rope-thingie is really cool, though not as cool as the sonic-boom-gun-thingie from “Minority Report.”
In case you were not aware, Kate Beckinsale is pretty attractive and she’s pretty attractive in this – and also fun to watch. She’s the only one here who is having fun with the material. Farrell and Biel are both fine, but are so brooding and serious all the time, save a line or two.
The action is top-notch – levitating car chase, elevator fight, Beckinsale chasing Farrell balcony to balcony, etc., but the story of a man on the run and learning the truth about who he is kind of gets lost in the spectacle. There is one interesting scene with Farrell’s buddy (an underutilized Bokeem Woodbine) who tries to convince him he’s still strapped to chair at Rekall and his adventure isn’t real, but the moment is fleeting. Biel has tough duty in this scene and throughout – her character is underdeveloped and she does her best to make us care. The film becomes less and less about Farrell finding out the truth and more and more about moving on to the next big action scene.
The end feels like they were trying to decide how to finish the story and just threw a bunch of stuff in there that isn’t really satisfying. Great action and a fun performance by Beckinsale are undermined by a lack of story development that feels a little cold at the conclusion.