The Frida Cinema

Orange County's Year-Round Film Festival

Total Recall

Frida After Dark and Verhoeven Month continue with Total Recall, a perfect action spectacle that has it all: humor, twists, creative visuals, charming effects, and three-breasted Martian women.

In 2084, construction worker Douglas Quaid (Arnold Schwarzenegger) visits Rekall, a company that implants false memories to replace actual travel vacations, and chooses a “trip” to Mars as a secret agent after having mysterious dreams involving the planet. When something goes wrong during the procedure, Quaid is sent home, but soon discovers that his entire life on Earth is the truth false memory invented to conceal a plot of planetary domination. Soon, he’s off to the real Mars to find out his past, all while evading the people who want him dead.

Released three years after RoboCop, Verhoven knocks it out of the park with another sci-fi thriller that’s only grown more delightful with time.


“All told, Total Recall is a powerful brew of mordant humor, keen wit, refreshing originality and graphic violence.” — Dennis King, Tulsa World

“Schwarzenegger is never going to make the De Niros and Hoffmans of this world lose a night’s sleep, but he has acquired a new confidence as an actor under Verhoeven’s guidance.” — Desmond Ryan, Philadelphia Inquirer

“The film’s visual invention is offset by its visceral nastiness. Schwarzenegger’s self-deprecatory good humour prevails none the less.” — David Robinson, Times (UK)