What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Total Recall is a remake of Arnold Schwarzenegger's popular 1990 sci-fi movie; both are based on a short story by cult author Philip K. Dick. The original, R-rated movie has gratuitous, shocking violence, which was sometimes played for laughs; this PG-13-rated version features more streamlined, martial arts-style fighting, with less blood -- though weapons are pulled, and characters do die. One sex-related joke from the original is repeated (an alien prostitute flashes her three naked breasts), and a married couple is scantily clad in bed. Language includes one "f--k" and many "s--t"s, plus other words like "a--hole" and "bitch." Characters drink beer in one scene, and a supporting character gets comically drunk. Teen sci-fi fans will be interested, but the movie seems destined for a short shelf life compared to the original.
- Families can talk about Total Recall's violence. Was it exciting or disturbing? How does it compare to the violence in the original movie?
- Is Quaid a good role model? How does he know he's doing the right thing if he doesn't know what's going on? What does he use as his moral guide?
- What does Total Recall have to say about our future? Which concepts in it are realistic? Which are fantasy?
- Does this remake have any new ideas/messages that weren't conveyed in the original? Why do you think they decided to make a new version?