WarGames

WarGames (1983)

42 mistakes

Factual error: When they launch the F-16's to intercept the Soviet "Backfire" Bomber, the picture shown is of two F-15's. In addition, no F-16's were stationed in Alaska to handle air defense duties, this was handled exclusively by F-15A/C's.

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Continuity mistake: During David Lightman's escape from the infirmary, notice the hands of the guard officer - he's wearing his gloves, and the next instant they have disappeared, and reappear in the next scene.

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Revealing mistake: In the scene where David starts the game with Joshua, it asks him what side he wants to be (1 for the U.S. and 2 for USSR). Look carefully at the closeup of the computer screen - his choice, 2, appears long before David actually presses the key.

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Audio problem: When Jennifer gives David a ride home near the beginning of the movie, you hear David's dog barking. In the next shot, we see the dog is running down the front path and it barks a couple more times. Look closely at its mouth, it's not barking.

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Continuity mistake: When David first talks to Joshua through the computer, Joshua types the word -mistakes- on the screen but two shots later, it is spelled mistak.

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William Bergquist

Audio problem: When Jennifer gives David a ride home near the beginning of the film, as David gets on her bike, she looks round and tells him to "Hop on" without moving her lips.

xx:xx:xx

Continuity mistake: In the scene where Joshua is going through the possible strikes, the US strike was done first followed by USSR's strike. However, when you see the list of strikes and the results, USSR is listed before US.

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unkajes

Factual error: During the part where they're in NORAD and watching all of the Soviet "nukes" hit various bases in the US, a base in northern Maine is listed as, "Loring AFB 43 Bomb Wing." This was a real air force base, but it was the 42nd Bomb Wing that flew B-52s out of Loring. The 43rd Bomb Wing did exist, too, but it was based at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, in the North Pacific.

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Visible crew/equipment: When the FBI van pulls up in front of the 7-11 to take Broderick away, lights and other rigging are reflected in the van.

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William Bergquist

Continuity mistake: McKittrick asks David, whom he was going to Paris with. However, the reservation was made in Jennifer's name, not David's.

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Jacob La Cour

Factual error: When Joshua is running through all of the possible nuclear war scenarios on the screen, several of them are labeled 'Palistinian'. The correct spelling is 'Palestinian'.

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wizard_of_gore

Other mistake: On the DVD cover, Broderick's and Sheedy's faces and the reflection of their faces on the computer monitor don't match.

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William Bergquist

Continuity mistake: The tour group comes in and they trick the black lady into pressing the red "launch" button that displays the welcome on the screen. Just before she presses it she has a 35 mm camera hanging around her neck, but in the next shot of the group standing in front of the panel her camera is gone.

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corona

Other mistake: Where the army officer is pushing the buttons on the wall panel to launch the missiles, on the both occasions you see it, the panel buckles highlighting the flimsy set.

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Continuity mistake: When David's father is pushing the dog down from the kitchen table, he has a knife in his left hand the whole time. The next shot however shows the knife no longer in his hand and him picking up the knife from the butter tub.

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Continuity mistake: Towards the end when the NORAD door is closing, they keep showing it opened further from shot to shot in order to delay how quickly the door actually is closing vs. how slow it really would have had to move in order to allow David and Dr. Falken to actually have still made it in.

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jerimiah

Continuity mistake: When Matthew Broderick plays "Galaga" later in the movie, when Jennifer asks David to fix her grade again, there is a shot in which David has two lives remaining when his ship is destroyed, but in the next shot, the game has ended.

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Revealing mistake: On the large screen at the end of the film, Joshua and Prof. Falken are 'writing' to each other. Falken types in "Hello Joshua"- he not only says it, but you can hear him typing it as well, however, on the screen, only the word "Hello" appears; the word "Joshua" doesn't.

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Audio problem: In the scene where the plane carrying Matthew Broderick is landing in Oregon, the plane shown landing is propeller driven. The sound effect is a jet engine aircraft.

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Factual error: The beginning starts out with two Strategic Air Command officers in a Minuteman Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) Launch Control Facility (LCF) going through the strict procedures for launch of an ICBM. The crypto messages are being received by the LCF, the launch officers pull the launch sequence and confirm the crypto launch command (encoded message) matches that which is contained in the launch sequence - all very secret, and all very realistic. However, the missile they show in the movie powering up for launch is a Titan ICBM, and how you launch a Titan from a Minuteman LCF is beyond me.

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Factual error: At one point, WOPR shows 22 Soviet subs leaving port. The map shows the Kola Peninsula, in the Arctic, bordering Norway and Finland. But the speaker say's they're departing Petropavlovsk, which is on the Kamchatka Peninsula, 4000 miles to the east, near Japan.

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Rondrejech

Factual error: In the scene in which Prof. Falken shows David and Jennifer a dinosaur movie projected on a screen, Falken is between the projector and the screen, with portions of the image on his face, slightly blurry, just like it would be. But David and Jennifer aren't in the light path, so the only light on them would be reflected from the entire screen, but when they're shown, images from the dinosaur movie are perfectly focused on them, which would be impossible.

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Factual error: While it makes for a great story for the movie, the reality is that all computer systems used by government agencies - especially in the DoD - are required to provide their source code for thorough inspection to ensure there are no back doors, hidden subroutines or other types of software code that are not relevant to the task designed for. Given the critical nature of this system being in control of launching nuclear missiles, the reality is that none of the games that Falken wrote - much less the whole routine to allow it to simulate a game like this - would still be in, for obvious reasons. Of course it could be argued Falken hid this, however given the lack of complexity for a computer of this era, it's highly unlikely.

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jerimiah

Factual error: When Matthew Broderick sets up his computer to look for other computers by getting it to dial a number, check to see if it is a computer, record the number if it is, hang up, and repeat the sequence, the writers forgot one thing. With the type of modem he was using (a so-called "acoustic coupler"), someone would have to physically push the hangup button on the phone before it could dial another number. It could be entirely possible though to dial a number from the computer and send the acoustic coupler the instruction to generate DTMF tones, but this could only be done once; without an actual relay that will cut the line and get a new signal tone again, no looping (war dialing) could be done. The next generation of modems that hooked directly to the phone line could do all of the above, but with what the movie used, it was impossible.

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Factual error: In two different scenes, Matthew Broderick lifts the phone receiver off his modem-once during the scene where it's dialing numbers in Sunnyvale, CA, and again when WOPR keeps calling his phone trying to reconnect. In both cases, the activity on the screen should have disappeared, since lifting the phone off the modem cradle disconnects the signal. Yet the computer somehow manages to keep dialing numbers, or display the running game clock on the simulation, without any interruption.

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Andrew Bauer

Continuity mistake: When David and Jennifer leave Falken's house, it is fully dark out. When the helicopter is shown flying around to pick them up, the sky changes from fully dark to some twilight in the sky, depending on the angle shown.

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Plot hole: Given the number of possible combinations the launch code could be (over 3600 trillion possibilities) it makes no sense that W.O.P.R cannot process that significantly quicker given how easily it's able to calculate thousands of ICBM impacts, damage inflicted, casualties, etc. for each "War Scenario" at the end as quickly as it does to determine a winner.

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jerimiah

Plot hole: Having a launch code that is visible to anyone who passes the control terminal does not make any sense especially given the power behind what that code does (launching of nuclear warheads).

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jerimiah

Plot hole: It makes no sense that NORAD would inform the media about the false missile attack since they know at that point it was a simulation and no real danger was at hand.

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jbrbbt

Plot hole: At the end, the suggestion to unplug W.O.P.R. to prevent the missiles from being launched was actually the right suggestion. Given that W.O.P.R. was guessing the launch code by brute force, the actual order to launch the missiles wouldn't be given until the launch code was determined and therefore the silos would not interpret anything until they received not only the order to launch but with the right launch code.

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jerimiah

Continuity mistake: Near the end of the movie, the panel has JPE 1704 TKS showing, but when Joshua finds the launch code, CPE 1704 TKS is blinking on the screen.

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WarGames mistake picture

Factual error: As the computer repeatedly tries different bombing strategies, all resulting in "WINNER : NONE", one of the strategies it lists misspells "Israel" as "Isreal" and "Palestinian" as "Palistinian."

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Ean Radcliffe

Plot hole: McKittrick says the computer will not accept the launch codes unless they are at DEFCON 1. At the end of the climax the computer is trying to guess the code while they are at DEFCON 1. So why couldn't they just go back to a different DEFCON before the correct code was guessed?

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Other mistake: When Jennifer meets David in Oregon she says she drove 3 hours to get there. In the next scene they are getting off a bus to catch the ferry. What happened to her car?

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Continuity mistake: The 1 minute 30 second countdown takes almost 2 minutes and 30 seconds, despite it being a continuous shot. And the last 10 seconds takes at least 13 seconds, despite each number being counted down out loud.

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Bishop73

Continuity mistake: When Matthew Broderick is first at his computer the screen is large and has an external modem on top. Later there is a close up shot of the keyboard and the monitor. At this point the monitor is completely different and much smaller. Then shortly afterwards you can see the larger monitor again with the modem on top (behind Ally Sheedy) while it war dials numbers. Shortly after that, the monitor changes again. You can also see the changes with the color and the "side handles" used for carrying. I counted three different monitors being used.

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Factual error: In the first scene with the computer (when Ally Sheedy visits) Matthew Broderick puts the handset on to the modem coupler with the cord toward him, then pushes the button on the modem which is facing him. A shortly while later he is at the computer and he puts the handset backwards with the cord away from him and pushes the button which is still facing towards him. The modem would not have worked properly, since it needs to send and receive through the respective ear and mouth pieces.

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Continuity mistake: In the very beginning, when the Air Force brass land at SAC in the helicopter, they get into a 2 door Jeep Cherokee. After they enter the tunnel and stop to get out, they exit a 2 door Jeep Cherokee Chief - the wide wheel well model, not the standard one they first got into.

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serbiesnow

Other mistake: When David first logs into the system after finding the right password, it shows a phone # beginning with the prefix 936. The only problem was that earlier when his computer was dialing numbers, he had not gotten to 936 yet. That was the 4th prefix and he only got through the first 3. There is no way he could have dialed that number with his computer program.

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Continuity mistake: In the scene towards the beginning of the movie when McKittrick, the General and others are discussing the problem that numerous missile commanders failed to launch their missiles because they believed the order to launch was not a test. As the camera shot goes back and forth on the actors in the room as they are talking, you'll notice McKittrick's hair goes back and forth from neat and combed to messy and disheveled.

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Revealing mistake: When David begins to play against the WOPR computer, the images on the war room screens show various tactical movements by other countries. These are the same images shown the first time the war room is seen.

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jbrbbt

Continuity mistake: When NORAD is waiting for the bombs to initially hit the bases, the animation of the inbound nukes is replayed multiple times showing the same approach towards Loring AFB.

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jerimiah

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Quotes

David: What kind of an asshole lives on an island and he doesn't even have a boat?
Jennifer: Maybe we can swim for it. How far do you think it is?
David: No, it's uh, 2 or 3 miles at least, maybe more.
Jennifer: Well, what do you say? Let's go for it.
David: No.
Jennifer: Come on!
David: No! I can't swim
Jennifer: You can't swim?
David: No, I can't. Okay, Wonder Woman? I can't swim.
Jennifer: Well, what kind of an asshole grows up in Seattle and doesn't even know how to swim?

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Trivia

Closely listen to the TV playing in the background, when Mathew Broderick comes home from school, before all his trouble starts with the Feds. The local news is on, and is saying "a fire broke out in a prophylactic recycling factory."

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