The Thing

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
2

Continuity mistake: When Kurt Russell first looks at the chess game, amount of ice in his glass changes between shots.

Fireball
2

Continuity mistake: When the dog, aka the The Thing, is led into the dog pen for the first time we see the floor is covered in a thick layer of straw for the dogs to sleep on. This is seen every time except when Childs uses the flame thrower. We get a wide shot of the pen as it's lit up in flame and the floor is now completely bare of any straw. There are also none of the recently deceased dogs that were lining the floor, being converted into Things. (00:31:05)

Mercury
2

Character mistake: When MacReady is giving the blood test, the scalpel they are using is not properly sterilized after each person cuts themselves (shown when Nauls cuts himself, then when Windows goes next: all he does is wipe the scalpel on his pants). Using the same scalpel seems like an extremely stupid thing to do as Fuchs told MacReady that even a small particle of the Thing could take over a person. (01:19:55)

2

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
1

Other mistake: When Doc's arms are being ripped off by Norris' chest, his left arm is cut by the teeth but his right arm is pulled off above the wound like rubber. (01:13:00)

1

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

Deliberate mistake: When the Norwegian starts shooting at the dog, Childs jumps into the snow and you can see the shape before he jumps in where he's had to do this before on different takes. (00:08:40)

Jack Vaughan

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: MacReady and Doc return to the research station from the abandoned shack in the helicopter. The scene then cuts to the dog watching the two exit the helicopter in the window. In the shot where the helicopter is visible in the window, the dog is looking out of the window from the right hand side. In the next shot, it is suddenly looking out of the left hand side. This mistake has nothing to do with the angle of the camera. (00:22:35)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: After MacReady and Doc have discovered the spacecraft, the scene cuts to a wide angle of them approaching one of the researchers looking into a dug up hole. Just as the wide shot ends, MacReady and Doc are standing right next to the man. The shot then cuts to a closer angle of the three and MacReady and Doc are now several feet away from him. (00:39:50)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: After the scene where the Norwegian helicopter chasing the dog through the snow ends, the scene cuts to the research station. The first shot from the research station shows a sign: UNITED STATES NATIONAL SCIENCE INSTITUTE STATION 4. This close-up shows scratching and rotting all over. A few minutes later, as the helicopter arrives at the station, the scratching and rotting over the "4" is no longer there. (00:04:30 - 00:06:15)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: When the Norwegian helicopter finds the dog running in the snow, the dog turns around to notice the helicopter, causing some of the snow around him to push upwards a few inches. The shot cuts to the helicopter, but when the shot cuts back, the snow is suddenly almost level with the rest. (00:03:35)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: When MacReady says they are going to find out who's who, he tells Doc, Garry and Clark to move away from the others and one of them steps forward in MacReady's direction. MacReady then raises his flamethrower around the top half of his abdominal region. The shot then changes where the camera is in front of MacReady and the top half of his abdominal region is shown, but the flamethrower is nowhere in sight. The camera cuts to an angle behind MacReady and the flamethrower is back. (01:02:10)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: When Windows breaks the glass to the gun cabinet, he takes out one of the shotguns and picks up some ammo. At the left hand side of the cabinet, there is some remaining glass in the cabinet along the side. The glass along the left side vanishes when Windows places the shotgun on the floor. (00:59:15)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: Back at the research station, the researchers are looking at some debris from the spacecraft that is placed on a cloth on a snooker table. There is a guy with a grey sweater with his hands in the debris and a guy in a brown jumper also holding the debris. In the next shot, neither of their hands are located on the debris or cloth. (00:40:50)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: When Doc is defibrillating Norris, in the shot before he defibrillates him and we see it is actually the thing, Norris' eyes are definitely closed. In the next shot, just as Doc bursts through Norris and the Thing's intestines are revealed, Norris' eyes are suddenly open. (01:15:20)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: Just after MacReady overhears the dogs barking, he runs over to the fire alarm, breaks the glass with his beer can and pulls the fire alarm. After he breaks the glass, there is a piece of broken glass located next to the alarm. But in the next shot, as he removes his hand, the piece of glass has vanished. (00:30:10)

Casual Person

Continuity mistake: When MacReady and Doc are examining the abandoned shack, MacReady comes across a portable video unit and MacReady then wipes off the snow and dust off the unit. From the first shot of the unit, we can see part of the unit is wiped so far, we are able to notice the unit itself. The visible part of the unit is located in the middle of the unit at first, but after Doc states the papers are in Norwegian and the shot cuts back to MacReady, it is now the edge of the unit that has the top of the unit visible. (00:20:00)

Casual Person

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

More quotes from The Thing

Trivia: After Director John Carpenter screened his completed film, the movie studio insisted that he go back and film a scene where MacReady is in a hospital, explaining how he alone survived. Carpenter had to fight to keep the original ending.

Mark Bernhard
More trivia for The Thing

Question: Was the huge monster McReady encounters, and subsequently blows up, the actual "default" form of the Thing? After all, the correspondent DVD chapter is titled "The Real Thing". Yes, they do say that the Thing could've imitated millions of different lifeforms, but it must've had a form to begin with.

Answer: In the book, it was vaguely humanoid with blue rubbery skin, a head of writhing tentacles, and 3 glowing red eyes. There is a picture of it in Barlowe's Guide to Extraterrestrials by Wayne Barlowe.

Grumpy Scot

Answer: At the end, the large creature presented itself as an amalgam of beings it had absorbed-part Blair, part dog, and various other beings with tentacles, insect-like legs, and a worm-like body. I don't believe that we really ever see what its true form is, if it has one.

Erik M.
More questions & answers from The Thing

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