Dan Deacon: 'Total Recall' a 'perfect choice' for Maryland Film Festival

When the Maryland Film Festival first approached local musician Dan Deacon (pictured) about presenting a late night screening, Deacon had no idea what flick to pick.

Deacon came up with three options: "Dead Man," "Total Recall" and "Predator." He went with "Total Recall," the 1990 sci-fi flick starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sharon Stone.


At 11 p.m. Saturday, Deacon will host a late night screening of "Total Recall" at the Charles Theatre.

"A lot of people pick something overly esoteric or a movie that tries to make them seem more intelligent than they are," Deacon said.

"I wanted to pick a movie I really wanted to see in the theater and would be fun. I thought "Total Recall" was a perfect choice." ...

Deacon first saw "Total Recall" as a kid, and still loved it when he revisited it as an adult. The special effects hold up, and the plot line is as pointed as ever, he said.

"It's a movie that, for lack of a better term, is a mindf--- movie," Deacon said. "You honestly don't know if Schwarzenegger is actually saving Mars or if he's completely insane."

"Total Recall" isn't just director Paul Verhoeven's best film, Deacon said, it's one of the best sci-fi/action movies ever made. There is one line at the end of the movie (Deacon wouldn't say which line) that makes you rethink all of the characters' motivations, he said.

"I love "Starship Troopers" and "RoboCop" -- those are beautifully awesome films," he said. "But "Total Recall" is the crown jewel."

If "Total Recall" were to be made today, the score would be terrible, Deacon said. Most of today's action films have sub par scores, he thinks. Not so for "Total Recall."

"The score in "Total Recall" is beautiful," he said. "If that score were to be made this year, it would be nu metal throughout, and overly orchestrated nonsense."

This isn't the first time Deacon has presented a piece involving Schwarzenegger. Several years ago, he and renegade Baltimore filmmaker Jimmy Joe Roche collaborated on "Ultimate Reality," a video/music project with footage taken from Schwarzenegger films.

"In a lot of his films, he plays the heroic protagonist that's stopping evil forces, and (now) he's become the evil forces," Deacon said. "It's the most awesome half-circle of life. He's the evil (governor). That's awesome."

(Baltimore Sun archive photo)