Someone Has Erased His Memory: Total Recall (1990)

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 I’ve been trying to tell you, someone has erased his memory.

Your mind is the center of your being. It not only houses all the functional elements to keep your body going, but your memories. Inside your mind is the essence of yourself, the one place where you wear no mask, where you think your darkest thoughts, your happiest views, etc.

But what if you were to lose that all one day. What if everything you thought about yourself didn’t exist? What if you weren’t really you, but someone else?

OMG gasp

That my friends is Total Recall.

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So yes, I’ve decided to review on of the most known, discussed, and debated films in history. This film has a little of everything action-adventure, horror, spy thriller, and science-fiction.

The film is based on the short story by Philip K. Dick, We Can Remember It for You Wholesale. The script was purchased in 1974, but then tabled as they felt they didn’t have effects needed to make the film. Ten years later, the team was once again discussing the possibility of the film.

What?

Of course it took a little while longer to get everything moving, but in the late 1980s they were ready to roll. One person who was all for moving it forward was Arnold Schwarzenegger. He had loved the idea and wanted to star in it, but unfortunately they didn’t want him.

Whattheheck

Weird right? By know Arnold was a big star; having Conan the Barbarian, Conan the Destroyer, The Terminator, Red Sonja, Commando, Predator, and The Running Man all under his belt. Often times if he wanted something, he got it.

But strangely, the company preferred Patrick Swayze.

weird

They started filming in Australia, but before they got too far, the company went bankrupt. Arnold convinced Mario Kassar to purchase the script, it undergoing some changes; and before you know it Arnold is given the main role. And it wouldn’t have been nearly as good without him.

So let’s move onto the film.

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The film start out with two people climbing the Martian landscape; a brunette and Arnold’s character. As the two are walking, he trips and falls, cracking open his face mask.

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AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

But then he wakes up. It was all a dream.

Yes this is Douglas Quaid (played by Arnold Schwarzenegger), a construction worker living in the world 2084. And this isn’t the first time he’s dreamed of Mars or had such nightmares. No this internal horror has been going on for a while.

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His wife Lori, (played by Sharon Stone), tries to get him to spill about what happened and who he was with, but Quaid doesn’t want to talk about it.

They move on with their daily routine; Quaid tuning on the TV and hearing about the rebellion happening on Mars. The mayor Vilos Cohaagen, owns the mines on Mars that house the mineral needed to run everything.

Dunecat

No, but the thought did cross my mind. People on Mars pay for their air, and lately the rebels have been lead by a psychic mutant, Kuato, to try and win more freedom, air, etc.

Even though things aren’t very nice and downright dangerous on Mars, Quaid really wants to visit. He’s tired of his boring life and yearns for excitement or adventure. Lori doesn’t want to go to Mars and nixes that idea. Instead of arguing, Quaid heads out to work.

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While on the subway commuting to work, he sees an ad for the agency Rekall. They implant memories of trips in your mind, it’s like going but for a fraction of the price.

The idea starts growing in Quaid’s mind. Maybe he should do it. He asks his friend Harry about what he thinks, but Harry tries to dissuade him from going.

Douglas Quaid: Ever heard of Rekall? They sell those fake memories.

Harry: Oh, “Rekall, Rekall, Rekall.” You thinking of going there?

Douglas Quaid: I don’t know, maybe.

Harry: Well, don’t. A friend of mine tried one their “special offers,” nearly got himself lobotomized.

Douglas Quaid: No s***?

Harry: Don’t f*** with your brain, pal. It ain’t worth it.

Douglas Quaid: I guess not. [Continues jackhammering, Harry watches in disbelief]

But Quaid can’t stop thinking about it. And he decides to go to Rekall. When he gets there he is at first hesitant about the trip, but the salesman McClane reassures him that the implants will be so real he won’t know the difference. Guaranteed fantastic experience or your money back.

Really?

Really?

Quaid decides to risk it and starts filling out the forms for his trip to Mars, but the salesman isn’t finished with the deal. For a bit extra they can improve the experience by altering his identity.

So here we go, one secret agent coming up. As they start the process, things don’t go quite as well as expected.

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Quiad freaks out insisting that they blew his cover as a spy. McClane believes that it was an implantation gone wrong, but the doctor insists that it can’t be.

Dr. Lull: [after Quaid goes crazy at Rekall] Listen to me, he’s been going on and on about Mars. He’s really been there.

Bob McClane: Use your head, you dumb b****! He’s just acting out the secret agent portion of his Ego Trip.

Dr. Lull: I’m afraid that’s not possible.

Bob McClane: Why not?

Dr. Lull: Because we haven’t implanted it yet!

They fear for their lives as messing something up that “The Agency” set up could be bad for them all. They scrub his mind clean and dump him in a cab.

When Quaid wakes up he doesn’t remember anything, but that doesn’t mean people aren’t after him. From his best friend Harry:

[Harry pulls gun on Quaid]

Douglas Quaid: What the hell is going on? What the f*** did I do wrong? Tell me!

Harry: You blabbed, Quaid! You blabbed about Mars!

Douglas Quaid: Are you crazy? I don’t even know anything about Mars!

Harry: You should have listened to me, Quaid. I was there to keep you out of trouble.

Douglas Quaid: Harry, you’re making a big mistake. You got me mixed up with somebody else.

Harry: Uh-uh pal, you got yourself mixed up with…

[Quaid kicks him in the chest, commencing the fight]

To his wife Lori:

Quaid doesn’t quite know what is going on, but is out to find out. He ends up fleeing and being contacted by a “friend” who gives him a suitcase of tools to help him. But he has to hurry as the Agency are following him by GPS.

Getting out of here

Getting out of here

He exchanges gunfire but manages to get away. This scene with the taxi driver, the Johnnycab, is my favorite scene. It expresses my feelings for most machines.

[Quaid enters a Johnnycab to escape from killers]

Johnnycab: Please state the street and number.

Douglas Quaid: Drive! drive!

Johnnycab: I’m not familiar with that address. Would you please repeat the destination?

Douglas Quaid: Anywhere just go! Go!

Johnnycab: I’m not familiar with that address. Would you please repeat the destination?

Douglas Quaid: S***! S***!

Johnnycab: Would you please repeat the destination?

Douglas Quaid: [Quaid rips the Johnnycab out and starts to drive himself] Aaahhh!

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When he manages to get away, he opens the suitcase given to him and finds a message from HIMSELF!

Hauser: Howdy, stranger! This is Hauser. If things have gone wrong, I’m talking to myself and you have a wet towel around your head. Now, whatever your name is, get ready for the big surprise. You are not you, you’re me.

Douglas Quaid: [to himself] No s***.

Hauser: All my life, I worked for Mars Intelligence, I did Cohaagen’s dirty work. But then I met someone, a woman. She taught me a few things, like I was playing for the wrong team. All I can do now is make up for it. You see…[Points to his head]…there’s enough s*** in here to f***Cohaagen good. But if you’re hearing this, it means is that he’s got to me first. Now, here comes the hard part, old buddy. Now it is all up to you.

Douglas Quaid: [displeased] Great…

Hauser: Now, let’s start by getting that bug out of your head. [Shows the nose deviceTake this out of the case, and stick it up your nose. Don’t worry, it’s self-guiding. Just shove real hard.

[Quaid takes a deep breath, and sticks the nose device up his nose.]

Hauser: When you hear a crunch, you’re there. Now, pull it out. Be careful! That’s my head, too.

[Quaid screams in pain while Hauser grins, then Quaid pulls out the bug]

Hauser: This is the plan. Get your a** to Mars, and go to the Hilton Hotel and flash the fake Brubaker I.D. at the front desk, that’s all there is to it. Just do as I tell you. You can nail that son of a b**** that f***** you and me. I’m counting on you, old buddy. Don’t let me down!

So Quaid finds himself in disguse headed for the red planet.

Once he gets there he finds himself caught up in figuring out what he knew and was trying to do, and to who’s side is he really on.

But as you watch this their is one question. Is this real? Or just the trip he paid for? He he really a secret agent? Or did his implants go malfunction?

Hmm...

Hmm…

I won’t reveal anymore as this is a film you need to check out for yourself.

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Of course our facebook cover/mini poster.

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To start Horrorfest IV from the beginning, go to You Cannot Conquer It. It Has Conquered You!: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)

For the previous post, go to Haunted Harmonies of Halloween: Top 5 Songs to Play on Halloween

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For more on Arnold Schwarzenegger, go to I’ll Be Back: The Terminator (1984)

For more Horror-Scifi films, go to They’re Here Already! You’re Next!: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)

For more films based on a book, go to What Are the 39 Steps?:The 39 Steps (1935)

What Have We Done to Each Other?: Gone Girl (2014)

2014 Gone Girl

What are you thinking? What are you feeling? What have we done to each other? What will we do?

So I am just stating here and now that I will not reveal the end of this movie. It is a great piece of work, with an amazing twist that you must see or read (the book) for yourself. Since it is still out in theaters I do not want to ruin anything for the potential viewer. That being said:

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So the book this film is based on came out in 2012 and I was really intrigued by it. I added it to my to-read list and planned on getting around to it. But you readers know how that is.

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So yeah, I hadn’t gotten around to it. However, that all changed this summer. I told you in a previous post that I journeyed out to Wyoming for an internship. There wasn’t a lot to do in the town, and the other interns and I mostly hung out on the weekends. We talked about what there was to do, which was mostly reading or netflixing. (I don’t have netflix so I Amazon Instant Watch or putlocker things). Anyways, one of the interns, Gwen, hadn’t brought anything with her and was asking about where to purchase books. I had brought my kindle and was fine (until it broke). I told her the library was out as I had found out to get a card I would have to pay $20.

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Then I remembered! There was a bookstore in town called “The Newstand“. But shortly after we arrived it went out of business.

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Yep. I think the only place left in town you could to get books were the Walgreens or the Walmart. They had two thrift stores in town, one was only clothes, the other furniture. It was very different from anyplace I’d lived before.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow

Anyways, so one week Gwen starts talking about this book she just bought (I don’t know where. Now that I think about it, I’m not sure I ever asked her.) She told us it was Gone Girl. Immediately I was intrigued as I had really wanted to borrow it. I asked for the book and finished it in one day. It was that good.

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The book is a mystery/suspense/horror. The way it is told is really interesting as it goes back and forth between the present and the past. In the present Nick Dunne’s is trying to figure out and cope with his wife Amy’s disappearance. The past is revealed to us through Amy’s journal, as she details the everything prior to her disappearance. It was an interesting book as it has the same unsettling qualities as Catcher in the Rye or Alias Grace. In Catcher in the Rye, the main character, Holden Caulfield, admits to the reader that he is a liar, leaving one unsure of what in the book is real, and what is a child’s fantasy. Margaret Atwood, author of Alias Grace, does a similar thing in her novel. There are no quotations marks put around the dialogue, leaving the reader very uncertain as to what was said and what was only in the character’s minds. Just like Holden,  Grace Marks leaves us wondering if she is really telling the truth?

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Gone Girl isn’t exactly written that way, but it does have some similarities. With Nick, he is described as being somewhat of an a***hole (his word not mine) and having a face that makes himself always look as if he is lying. He is too good looking and charming that you don’t want to trust him (the characters joke that his chin causes you to not trust him.) As you read his accounts you start wondering if there is more than he is telling the reader. You feel as if he is hiding something from you, even though it is told in first person. It makes you wonder what is he hiding? What are his secrets?

Suspense have to know

And then you have Amy. Everything we hear is from what she wrote in a journal. But is it the truth? After all a journal is where you release your emotions. Sometimes you exaggerate or write things down that you would never do, just because it helps destress you. As I mentioned before it is a release. Besides that you don’t write everything down in a journal. After all, that is a lot of work. Most of the time you write down the things that made you upset or happy; never giving the whole picture but a moment. Just a moment. It’s selective in memory. So that begs the question: how much of it can we take as fact? How much is fiction?

Carnival of Souls Don;y know real

So one day I was at the movie theater watching Expendables III. The film finished and I contemplated sneaking in to see another film, but unfortunately the theater I was at was very small (four screens) and the ticket seller and I had had an actual conversation, so he would remember me. Along with that, my “California-ness” showed very strongly as everyone told that I looked very “different” from Wyoming girls.

Yeah I don't understand it either

Yeah I don’t understand it either

So instead I called a cab for a ride home and waited around until it came. As I was waiting, I started watching the screen that showed trailers for upcoming films. I saw one for The Equalizer, but it didn’t really strike me as a “must-see”. After that the trailer for Gone Girl came up.

OMG

I didn’t even know that they were turning the book into a film!!! Fantastic!!! Then I saw the cast list. As you know from an earlier post, I love Ben Affleck. I knew he would be a perfect Nick. Rosamund Pike was great as Jane in Pride and Prejudice (2005) and I was interested to see how she would do this role. I thought Neil Patrick Harris was a great choice as Amy’s ex, as everything I have ever seen him in he has conquered. The only thing I was unsure about was Tyler Perry. But to be honest, any time I see him not playing Madea, it’s a little strange. Anyways, I became excited for the film and couldn’t wait to see it.

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And as I mentioned before it was pretty incredible.

Take note Hollywood

Take note Hollywood

What was great about the film was that they followed the book pretty consistently. There are a few changes, but not enough to make you want to string up the director by his thumbs. On a whole the changes didn’t really hurt the film at all. I thought it was amazing how they handled the flashbacks, narrations, and journal entries. I would definitely read the book along with the movie as it has more detail and little things that can’t transfer over to film. I do give one warning though. If you want to be surprised DO NOT READ THE BOOK. The book has this amazing twist, about halfway through, and a killer end. It was a great shock when you read it, but not so much the second time encountering it on the screen. I mean you already know it, so while the rest of the audience is oohing and ahhing over it, you’re just chilling there thinking, knew it.

dean whinchester shrug smile oh well

So if you truly, truly want to be surprised. I would wait to read the book until after seeing the film.

So I’m just going to do a partial review, as I really, really don’t want to spoil too much for anybody.

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Nick Dunne

Nick Dunne Gone Girl Lost Confused

It is the day of the Dunne’s five-year anniversary. And Nick is not very happy.

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You see life hasn’t been a bed of roses for the Dunnes. Nick is from a little town; North Carthage, Missouri. He went to college and moved to New York, and began writing for a magazine. He met Amy at a party and the two later married…but bliss did not last long. He lost his job due to downsizing as the economy tanked. His father is crazy and in a home where he constantly escapes from. And his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Immediately, hearing the news of his mother, he and Amy move back to his hometown much to her displeasure.

Now the relationship was already strained, but after moving to Missouri it becomes much worse. Amy is a New Yorker born and bred and doesn’t do well with places that are not New York.

That particular morning, Nick heads over to the bar that he bought with his twin sister Margot, and the two contemplate what would be a good anniversary present. 5 years is wood, “and there’s nothing good from that.” When Nick heads home, he receives the biggest shock of his life.

What!

His house is a mess and his wife is missing.

OMG

He can’t find her and doesn’t know where she might be. He calls the police and later, her parents. They team up and begin commercials, signs, news reports, trying to find Amy. Ben Affleck did an amazing job at this role.

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But some people don’t think that he’s quite so innocent. Some suspect he might have killed her. Things become espechially sticky when they discover the broken in area was staged, and a lot of blood was spilled and then cleaned up afterwards. Did he have something to do with his wife’s disappearance? Did he kill her? Is he innocent? If he is innocent, than what happened to her? Where can she be?

Suspense have to know

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Amy Dunne

gone-girl-amy Dunne Rosamund Pike

We are first introduced to Amy through her journal. Amy is the daughter of authors. Her parents wrote the best-selling series called Amazing Amy. Their main character is perfect and excels at every hobby. Especially things that Amy has failed at. Amy resents the books, but they have made her famous and a major spot in the limelight.

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Amy is beautiful, charming, witty, etc. The “perfect” woman.

DDontHateme cause beautiful boy meets world

She writes personality quizzes for magazines for a living. I know some of you out there might think that’s a bit strange, but let’s face it…she has a major trust fund. She meets Nick at a “writer” party one night, and after that the two are hooked. They get married and have a few great years, but things start going downhill once Nick loses his job. He becomes someone that she doesn’t know.

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She hates Missouri. Nick thrives, but it makes her feel like she is choking. Then things in the marriage start to get even worse…Or does it? Is Nick really as cruel as Amy paints him? Or are the writings in the journal just the exaggerations of an unhappy, displaced person?

What!

Did Amy leave by her own choice? Or was she taken by force? But most importantly, where is Amy?

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The supporting characters are just as great as Affleck and Pike. Carrie Coon is perfect as Margot as she is really able to capture twin sister needling brother, and being supremely protective of him. Kim Dickens is an amazing Detective Rhonda Boney, the homicide officer assigned to the case. She seems all midwestern, laid-back, easygoing, charm; but she has a real brain in her head and is highly observant. Neil Patrick Harris steals scenes, as he plays Desi Collings, Amy’s ex and possible kidnapper. And then we have Tyler Perry, rounding out the cast as Tanner Bolt. I never would have picked him for the part as he is radically different, but he does a great job as being one of those shark lawyers after the big-name cases.

dean whinchester shrug smile oh well

And is has an awesome twist that I will not reveal as you all should definitely watch/read for yourself.

Where is Amy? What Happened to Her? Visit Your Local Theater to Find Out.

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To start Horrorfest III from the beginning, go to Even a Man Pure of Heart

For the previous post, go to There’s Nothing Out There. Nothing in the Mist

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For more on Ben Affleck, go to What is This Thing?

For more on films based on books, go to You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat

For more twist endings, go to Don’t F*** With the Original

For more book-filled posts, go to I Was Here For A Moment. And Then I Was Gone

For more of my favorite quotes, go to Part X: The Movie List That Would Not Die