In reading this question I learned that Total Recall was based on a book, and that the original Total Recall was not very much like the book at all.

Is the rebooted Total Recall truer to the book We Can Remember It For You Wholesale? Aside from the apparent difference that the movie is based on Earth instead of Mars, as pointed out in this answer.

  • As they turned a short story into a full length movie one might expect a few deviations. But then again Minority Report and Do Androids dream ... make do as a very loose inspiration for the respective movies either.
    – Ghanima
    May 15, 2015 at 20:57
  • @Ghanima I expect deviations in any book-to-movie conversion. But many such projects stay at least mostly the same. The Hunger Games, for instance, had some deviations but was basically the same. Divergent, on the other hand, was a very loose interpretation that was rarely true to the book at all. May 15, 2015 at 21:04
  • @Dave not to mention how different "The Running Man" novel / film were :-D May 15, 2015 at 23:04
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    On a side note, there's also an official novelization by Piers Anthony which sports a slightly different ending because he wrote it to match the first script.
    – FuzzyBoots
    May 16, 2015 at 2:28

1 Answer 1


The reboot is even less like the short story than the film with Schwarzenegger. All of this is fairly accurately explained on Wikipedia.

Short story plot & Film adaptations

Schwarzenegger film plot

Farrell film plot

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