If there’s any reason to ask what happened to Rachel Ticotin it’s probably because for a number of years she stayed away from the big screen to focus on her TV career, but it does appear as though she might be making a return since she did star in a movie in 2020. One might also think that TV is far more regular line of work than the movies, especially now since big blockbusters aren’t exactly popping up on a regular basis at the theaters, largely thanks to the pandemic and in part because the studios apparently don’t want to make some money versus no money by holding onto their properties. But apart from that, Rachel is the type of actress that’s kind of leaned into the stereotypes in the past even as she’s turned them to her advantage by using her Puerto Rican heritage as much as she can in a variety of ways. Some of her best roles though haven’t really leaned that hard into her appearance or heritage, and they’ve come out just fine since she’s managed to play a very strong and capable role that has helped the movies she’s been in to work in a very efficient manner.
Her role as Melina in Total Recall is one such role since despite her appearance it didn’t really matter since she and many others were classified as a different class of people that were seen as less than desirable. This movie was kind of cheesy in a lot of ways but when one considers that it was made in the 90s it’s kind of easy to guess why since the whole thing wasn’t really expected to be that great. But for what it was, an action movie that starred Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sharon Stone, it was all just good enough that people were willing to watch and remember it since even today people still claim that the original movie was much better than the remake that came out a while back. Plus, Melina was a much more forward and toughened individual than the remake provided, as she was able to get down and dirty and really tear into people. It could be that the 90s had a way of putting a sharper edge to some things, but the fact is that the movie did have a lot more going for it than the remake, which felt like kind of a hollow shell by comparison, but wasn’t so terrible that it didn’t deserve any regard.
The detective roles she’s played in the past have been convincing enough since in Falling Down she had a chance to act alongside Robert Duvall and Michael Douglas, and she put up a good performance since she wasn’t too forward and wasn’t always fully present, but she had a decent role that allowed her to be an important supporting character that was needed. Her time in Con Air as Sally Bishop was even fun to watch since she didn’t have a lot to do throughout the movie, but her initial action of taking off after Pinball, played by Dave Chappelle, was pretty cool since it made the point that she wasn’t in any way weaker than her fellow guards since she was right there to throw down when she needed to be. Of course, Pinball did manage to shrug her off and still free Cyrus, but at the same time she wasn’t cowering in the corner begging for her life. She’s played a tough individual throughout a lot of her movies and it’s been fun to watch since she’s made it clear that she’s not the type to simply back down and let others do the work for her unless that happens to be the role. For instance her role as Mariana in Man on Fire with Denzel Washington didn’t depict her as physical badass, but it certainly allowed her to be a competent individual who had no trouble helping a former assassin turned bodyguard when he was tracking someone down.
That’s one thing about Rachel that’s always been a great thing to see, that her characters don’t often back down and if they do it means that it’s part of the role, not necessarily her own personal character. It’s kind of obvious that she focused on a TV career for a while since 9 year away from movies does sound like a pretty big break that a lot of people couldn’t just come back from unless their fame had been established in such a way that there’s no possibility of losing it before the star wants to come back. But while Rachel might not have that level of fame she does have the ability to turn heads and get the attention of the people with her acting, which has always been solid and has been fun to watch.