Other mistake: After the crash landing in the desert, when the astronauts are preparing to head out on foot, Brubaker states that he will continue west, then tells Walker to go north, and Willis to go south. Brubaker heads out straight ahead, Walker goes to the left, and Willis to the right, meaning that Walker was actually going south, and Willis to the north. (01:04:40)
Plot hole: The "death" of the three astronauts and the requirement to then fake the whole scenario of the failed mission was obviously unplanned - it came about because of an unexpected computer glitch which reported that they had burned up on reentry, causing a mad scramble to cover up the fake mission and kill the astronauts. Obviously it was planned to have the astronauts "return" to Earth as heroes after their supposed trip to Mars, maintaining their deception (under threat if necessary) for the rest of their lives. One problem. Every scientist on earth would be champing at the bit to get their hands on a sample of Martian rock. Samples would be worth billions, worth far more than Moon rocks are worth today. How was NASA going to explain they didn't have any? They could not possibly fake the rocks - Martian soil and rocks would have a number of identifiable characteristics that a smart first year college student could identify. Using Martian meteorites collected from the Earth's surface won't work, either - prolonged exposure to the Earth's atmosphere would leave tell tale weathering and chemical changes that would be instantly detectable. NASA have painted themselves into a corner and that is not something they would have failed to realise well in advance.
Robert Caulfield: You wouldn't know sincerity if it ran over you.
Judy Drinkwater: Not if you were driving it.
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