The Thing

The Thing (1982)

59 mistakes - chronological order

(9 votes)

Plot hole: It's never explicitly stated or shown that the Thing reproduces with each victim until the movie is nearly over (when Palmer infects Windows). Most viewers figure it out from the context, but it's unclear just when and how the characters themselves have come to this conclusion. This was an inadvertent result of an editing decision and a visual goof: there is a deleted scene in which Blair explains much more directly that the Thing multiplies according to how many victims it takes, and in its place in the final film is a scene containing a computer simulation that director John Carpenter acknowledges was a failed attempt at explaining the organism's life cycle.

TonyPH Premium member

Plot hole: As the gun-toting Norseman approaches the buildings, Garry smashes the single-pane window with his handgun. It is inconceivable that the glazing in a structure near the South Pole would be single-pane glass, that could be broken so easily.

Continuity mistake: When they are all outside and MacReady has separated the three most likely suspects and orders that they be tied down and tested, he comments at that time that they are to be hit by a storm in six hours. Cut to the scene where Mac is dictating into his recorder and he comments that the storm has been hitting them hard for 48 hours. However it is the same night and at best, maybe only an hour has passed.

Mercury

The Thing mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Mac is locked out of the complex by the rest of the team, who think he may be a 'Thing', Childs uses an axe to try and chop open one of the doors, leaving a HUGE hole in the middle of it. Later Childs returns to that same door and the hole is significantly smaller and at a completely different location on the door.

Visible crew/equipment: At the end of the film, where MacReady is about to fight 'the thing' you can see the shadow of a guy holding a boom mic, on the ground just behind him.

The Thing mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When the crew is outside and they're going to lock Blair in the tool shed, you can see someone nailing wood across the window on the front of the shed. The pieces of wood are horizontal. In the next shot (inside the shed), if you look at the window in the background, the strips of wood are vertical. When Mac goes back outside, the wood is horizontal again.

Mark Bernhard

Continuity mistake: When the Doc and Kurt Russel enter the burnt Norweigan building the door closes itself behind the Doc. It closes and opens several times over the course of the scene.

Fireball

Factual error: In the kennel scene, MacReady fires at least 7 shots from a pump shotgun. That particular shotgun can only hold 5.

Grumpy Scot

Continuity mistake: When the three men are shown finding the UFO from the front, their hoods are down. In the next scene, from behind, their hoods are over their heads.

Fireball

Revealing mistake: When MacReady burns the one "Thing" with the split head, in one shot it walks by MacReady in the foreground, and you can tell in that shot that it is just a still dummy burning, as it isn't moving at all. It just sort of floats past with its arms at its sides, while in the previous and next shots it is wildly moving around, arms flailing.

Other mistake: When Blair goes crazy with an axe, they put him in the tool shed and Doc injects him with something to calm him down. The problem is: Doc injects him in the inner elbow, but wipes the upper arm as if that's where the injection went. Plus you only inject in the inner elbow when you want something IV, but there was no tourniquet, no searching for a vein. It should have been given IM, into a muscle, like the upper arm.

kh1616

Continuity mistake: When Kurt Russsell first goes to the crazy guys' shack, he puts a bottle down with the label facing forward. When he leaves it is facing the other way.

Fireball

Visible crew/equipment: When we see the huge dog alien, right before Childs burns it, a crewemember controlling the puppet is seen on the center of the monster's head.

Fireball

Factual error: At the beginning, MacReady dumps a tumbler of ice and scotch into his computer, which spews a shower of sparks as it shorts out. No electronic device, not even an old 1980s personal computer, sparks like that when shorted out. It simply goes dead.

Charles Austin Miller

Continuity mistake: Each man only dribbles a few drops of blood into the petri dishes as their blood samples. But when the test is administered, there is a lot more blood in each dish, enough to cover the entire bottom.

Twotall

Character mistake: The spaceship is much deeper in the ice than frozen thing, indicating it was buried a hundred thousand years after the spaceship landed. Norris' calculation of the age of the spaceship wouldn't apply to the thing, which was hardly buried at all, by comparison.

Continuity mistake: When in the helicopter, the Norwegian men are both wearing different types of goggles, but when they're out of the helicopter, they both have the same type of goggles.

Clark: I dunno what the hell's in there, but it's weird and pissed off, whatever it is.

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Trivia: The TV edit of the film differs widely from the theatrical release - lots of footage was purposely edited out, such as when the dead Norwegian on the table blinks, and there is also a narration. Director John Carpenter has publicly stated that he finds the TV edit embarrassing and a disgrace to his movie.

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Question: Was any member of the team aware that they were infected by the creature, or did they not know they were until they began changing?

Answer: The death of Fuchs is probably the best answer to this question, as it appeared that Fuchs burned himself alive before the Thing could assimilate him. It's also possible that Norris suspected he was infected before he transformed. There is a scene in which we see Norris, who is alone, suddenly wince in pain, surprised, and grab at his chest, but he continues functioning normally thereafter. Following the altercation with Mac, Norris collapses and becomes unresponsive, until his chest cracks wide open and bites off Copper's arms. Also, in the blood test scene, Palmer's facial expressions appear to betray his secret, but he was already fully transformed at that point.

Charles Austin Miller

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