Total Recall (Remake): in order to take a break from his life Douglas Quaid visits Rekall, a company that implants false memories to distract people from their pitiful existence. I went into this expecting a big steaming pile of shiitake mushrooms, but was pleasantly surprised by how daft and enjoyable it was. Not a whole lot has been changed from the original movie – other than the edges being filed down – but there is so much action that you didn’t really have the time to think about the story more than 30 seconds. Fist fights, gunfights, robot fights, chases, explosions, floating cars, and loads of future tech – all set in a spectacular world that evokes the metropolises featured in the likes of Minority Report, Fifth Element, iRobot, and more recently, Dredd. Whilst it will never win any awards for acting, originality, politics (Great Britain and the Australian sub-human Colony – LOL) or even being a required remake – the 2012 Total Recall gives the original a modern facelift, putting an emphasis on the ‘instantly forgettable CGI-heavy Sci-Fi action romp’ angle.
American Reunion: the original gang head back to Great East Falls for their ‘Class of 99’ high school reunion, but will they be up to their same old antics? In a nutshell, it’s pretty obvious that the cast have struggled to shake off the image from the first few films (which were such a phenomenon at the time) and are only looking to make a bit of good cash again. In my books, Sean William Scott (Stifler) is the only one that’s done well – but even he’s still typecast! Being honest – although they’re all flatter than stamps – it is good to see everyone back on the screen again, and it’s even better when the smaller characters keep popping up: Shermanator, MILF guys, Nadia, Stiffler’s Mum, Jim’s dad etc etc. As before, the soundtrack is very punchy and pop-rock filled (with a nice encore from one of the original tunes), but has some of the most uninspired literal lyrics to match the scenes that I’ve ever seen. The story’s a bit of a mess; it feels like a bunch of random / funny scenes that loosely fit the tired ‘shaky friendship’ story arc. It’s all a bit business as usual, from the gratuitous boob / bum shots, slow motion scenes of hot babes being hot babes and plenty alcohol-fueled regrettable & misunderstood scenarios. I won’t lie, I laughed, lots so on a comedic level it’s better than expected, but overall it feels much safer than the original three. American Reunion is familiar territory (dick and poop gags), that will land well as a nostalgia piece for people like me that grew up on the first films; however, younger viewers will see this as a pretty weak effort, especially in the wake of films like Superbad, Pineapple Express, et al.
Alternative sticker, will be in the DVD extras
A very Harold and Kumer 3D Christmas: [3D] It’s Christmas eve and when a magical doob burns down Harold’s one-of-a-kind Christmas tree the two must find a replacement before the big day. And yes, this film is every bit as stupid as the title would suggest. There’s babies on drugs, dick jokes, racial stereotypes, lesbian nuns/pedo priests, drug use, dealer Santa, a surgery montage, sexy massage, and a robot that makes waffles (and hates pancakes) – it’s totally mental, 100% crude but so festive that it’s almost impossible not like. The stoner element is minimized to a few scenes and 3D smoke rings, and it feels more like a ‘Hangover’ type situation-after-situation affair. The 3D was brilliant: very aware, gimmicky, in-your-face pointy-pokery – the way it should be. Surprisingly funny, solidly uplifting, and equally offensive to every and all age/race/belief this could well be one of the best modern Christmas stories!