The summer’s megaton hit is certain to repeat its smash performance on video. Total Recall, by director Paul Verhoeven, who made the brilliant RoboCop, is a head film for action freaks. Set in 2084, it stars Arnold Schwarzenegger (at his deadpan best) as a happily married construction worker who learns that his entire existence has been prefabricated. He journeys to Mars to reclaim his old identity and get even with the people who hijacked it. The film starts out as mind-bending futuristic satire and then turns relentless — a reckless orgy of pop nihilism and state-of-the-art slasher carnage, like a violent, post-punk version of an Indiana Jones cliff-hanger. On that level, however, it achieves total pumpitude. B+

Total Recall
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