Total Recall

Corrected entry: The atmosphere of Mars is so cold that anyone who went outside without a spacesuit would freeze instantly.

Correction: In the summer when the sun is up the surface temperature of Mars could be as high as 35° Celsius. So no, you won't always freeze instantly.


Corrected entry: Quaid and Melina both use the hologram device to trick Rickter and his men at the reactor. If the holograms are mimicking Quaid and Melina's actions then the bad guys should have spotted the real Quaid and Melina walking around just mere feet away.

Correction: They would mimic the moves behind a pillar, unseen by Rickter and his men.


Corrected entry: After Quaid and Melina escape from Cohaagen's scientists they retreat to the Pyramid Mines in order to locate the reactor. They come upon a dead end only to find Benny lying in wait inside a tunneling machine in order to kill them. Benny had no way of knowing they would be over there - Cohaagen and Richter didn't even know they had escaped the scientists yet - so there was no logical reason for Benny to have been waiting there for them. (01:32:25 - 01:33:25)

Phaneron Premium member

Correction: Benny (and Richter) was in the room when Kuato told Quaid to start the reactor, so he knew exactly what Quaid's plans were. He was probably ordered there to make sure Quaid (or his associates) didn't try to get to the reactor. It just so happened to be Quaid and Melina who went to the reactor, but Benny would be waiting for anyone.


Corrected entry: Near the end of the film, where Quaid is about to get shot by the man with the bomb, (Cohagen), Melina arrives just in time to shoot him 5 or 6 times in the shoulder, then 6 or 7 more times in the chest. You can see that he is barely strong enough to pick up the remote detonation device. But, somehow, he is strong enough to keep himself from being sucked into the wind tunnel.

Correction: Adrenaline rush could account for that, people often find to posses strength they otherwise wouldn't have in life and death situations. Additionally, if the movie is just playing in Quaids' mind, it's not necessarily completely realistic and this part adds quite a bit to the drama, making the virtual holiday seem even more heroic.

Corrected entry: Listen to the technician at the recall center when Arnie first gets put in the chain to begin his "vacation", right before he is introduced to his choices for women. You will hear the male lab guy say, "This is a new one, blue skies over Mars", exactly what happens at the end of the movie! So, is it all just a dream?

Correction: Yeah, that's kinda the point - there are many references during the Recall centre section of the film to what subsequently happens, raising the possibility that the whole thing is, in fact, a dream. The references are pretty obvious (and there are more than you mentioned), which invalidates them as worthy trivia. As has been said many times, something that can be readily seen or heard simply by watching the film is not valid trivia.

Tailkinker Premium member

Corrected entry: When Cohagen is boasting about how his plan to kill Cuato was a success, he mentions that Richter wasn't aware of the plan. But this makes no sense, because if Richter had managed to kill Quaid (and he had plenty of chances to do so) then the whole plan would have failed. Cohagen would have definitely made sure that Richter had orders not to kill him.


Correction: Cohagen mentions this in his rant to Quaid on how the plan almost failed. And, people do disobey orders.


Corrected entry: In the scene after Arnold kills the construction hoods he goes home to Sharon Stone and tries to convince her that it was real by showing her his bloody hands with which he was grabbing her shoulders, yet there is no blood on her or the appliances he turned off upon entering the apartment.

Correction: This could be due to the whole movie being real or taking place in Quaid's mind. Obviously, if it's taking place in his mind, reality may not always exist.

Corrected entry: The main plot is similar to a futuristic Japanese anime called "Space Adventure Cobra" (1982). In the first episode of the series, Cobra believes that he is a normal guy, but discovers accidentally that he was a secret agent who deleted his memory and changed his appearance to run away from his enemies. This happens when he goes to a place where customers pay to experience their fantasies using a kind of brain-PC connection (just like in Recall). He dreams he is a special agent hunting criminals in space but eventually realizes he is just recalling who he used to be.

Correction: In fact the plot of "Space Adventure Cobra" is ripped off the source material of "Total Recall", which was based on a 1966 short story by Philip K. Dick. The resemblence of the plotlines and characters is no coincidence and is hardly trivia - the anime film swiped their plot from the source for which the producers of this film paid and therefore used legitimately.

Agreed on the main plot. But please also clarify about the gadgets and scenes in the film. For example, the lady mask that the main character wears when he lands on Mar. And when he is caught, he just throws the mask. The mask then speaks a few sentence and turns into the explosive. That is exactly the same as manga. Do the scene and gadget also exist in 1966 story?

Corrected entry: The alien machine apparently simply heats the glacier ice to produce oxygen. However, heating ice merely creates water vapour (steam). To produce oxygen from water requires a more complicated process involving electrolysis, and could not be done in mere seconds to produce enough oxygen to cover an entire planet. If that much oxygen (and hydrogen, don't forget) was pumped out that quickly, it would produce massive storms and lethal high winds which, when combined with all the dust on Mars would sandblast everyone to death, and the resultant storms and high winds would last for decades.

Correction: Several things: The glacier could be made up of frozen oxygen so there would be no need for electrolysis. Keep in mind that this is a fictional machine built by a fictional alien species set in a fictional movie in the future. So there is no saying what physical properties govern this device. Also, seeing as how no one has actually ever instantly mass-produced that much oxygen to cover an entire planet, there is no saying what the actual consequences would be.

Corrected entry: When Arnold's wife grabs a knife out of the sink and takes the first swing at him, you can see that there's nothing in her hand.

Correction: Completely wrong. The knife is very visible in her hand using slo-mo.


Corrected entry: Never mind the absolute ridiculousness of having machine guns in a vacuum environment with many glass windows (and huge glass domes), why for safety's sake didn't the Mars colony have bullet proof glass?

Correction: Simply, money. Cohagen simply doesn't care. Bullet-proof glass is an expense he would rather not have.

Corrected entry: The psychiatrist that Arnold meets in his room did in fact work closely with Mr. Cohaagen. In Arnold's memory, we see Mr. C., Richter, and some other guys walking through the room Arnold will use his 3-D holo-image in. With them is the "psychiatrist" but with some glasses on.

Correction: No, this man is not the psychiatrist. It is just someone with glasses.

Corrected entry: Funny how the bad guys (Richter, et al) can pinpoint Quade with their scanner, but they run right past him on the way to his apartment.


Correction: They didn't turn the scanner on yet. They expected that his wife would have killed, or at least restrained, him on their way up. No need to scan when the know exactly where he is.


Corrected entry: In the scene where Lori is fighting with Douglas Quaid, it shows her wearing a pair of brand new 1990 Ladies Nike Air sneakers, even though the film is supposed to be set quite some time in the future. It is unquestionable that Nike would have updated its product or changed to accommodate a change in fashion.

Correction: There are people today that would spend a few hundred dollars to buy a set of 1900 Levi jeans to wear. Maybe she bought a vintage set of Nike sneakers. Look at Will Smith's character in I, Robot.


Corrected entry: When Arnold is in the hotel being talked down by the psychiatrist, the villains are waiting to get an elevator. When they get to the floor with Arnold's room they arrive on a different bank of elevators. They come up the main elevators only to arrive on the service elevators.

Correction: They don't arrive at the service elevator. It looks similar but if you look its different than the elevator Melina got out of.

Corrected entry: When Douglas Quaid explains to Melina that the reactor discovered on Mars was built by "aliens," shouldn't he have said "natives"?


Correction: Strictly speaking, 'natives' would have been more accurate, yes, but if you take 'aliens' to mean non-humans, which is a common interpretation, his statement is quite reasonable.

Tailkinker Premium member

Corrected entry: The Martian moons portrayed in this movie are shown to be spherical. The two moons are very small, however, and are in the shape of a potato.

Larry Koehn

Correction: The moons are not potato shaped. Both satellites have topographic variations as large as 20 percent of local mean radii, and Deimos has a few large flat areas, but they appear round to the eye.

Corrected entry: After the fight with Richtor, Arnie throws his severed arms off the elevator. If you look closely at the bottom of the elevator you can see the arms do not fall all the way down. They disappear once they hit the floor of the stage Arnie is acting on - they forgot to animate some arms falling on the bluescreen image.

Correction: Rictor's arms were torn off when the elevator passed through a floor or a tier or something. Is it not possible that this is where the arms fell to? I don't think they were meant to fall all the way down...

Corrected entry: The film establishes that the core of Mars is made of ice. When planets are coalescing from gas clouds, cumulative gravity draws the heavier materials into the center of the planet. This is why Earth has a nickel-iron core and even gas giants have some solid material in the center. Ice is much too light to occupy this niche in Mars and would have been crushed and replaced by heavier metals in the shell around it, even if the ice was inserted after planetary formation by aliens.


Correction: Quaid (Arnold) says this, but I wouldn't say that means that "the film establishes it". Quaid is not a scientist and has no idea how this thing works. He sees a big patch of ice in a cave and decides the whole core of Mars is ice, it's probably just one ancient ocean that drained into an underground cave system and froze.


Corrected entry: When Arnie first activates the hologram in the old factory hall and faces it, it can be seen that the holo image holds the left hand (with the hologram projector) up; the real Arnie lets his left arm dangle.

Correction: As we see later in the movie, the hologram is a mirror image of the original person.

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.