Contact

Continuity mistake: When the signal is first received, and they realize it is transmitting prime numbers, if you listen closely, the signal hits 11, starts over, but continues on up into the 30s, completely skipping all the prime numbers after 11.

Continuity mistake: If the cameras inside the Sphere won't work because of the magnetic field that is being given off by the machine, then why do the cameras on the main structure work?

Continuity mistake: When the Machine is used for the second time (with Ellie in the pod) the large outer ring is set spinning. This brings the total number of spinning rings to three. However, when video of the pod falling through the machine is played back on the TV screen, the outer ring is fixed horizontally and not moving at all. Only the two inner rings are spinning.

Continuity mistake: When Ellie arrives back from her travels, the capsule lands in a net supported from four pillars, and to decellerate effectively, both the net and capsule end up in the water. However, when we view the splashdown from a CCTV camera (Cam 03) when Ellie is in quarantine, neither the net nor the pillars are to be seen. (02:01:40 - 02:03:15)

Continuity mistake: When Ellie is in the pod and is talking to Kent, her monitor has the word "Hadden" in the top left hand corner. In subsequent shots, there is no "Hadden" on the monitor.

Continuity mistake: When Ellie is being driven through the desert she sees The Preacher with the long hair. As it cuts between them, her seat belt goes from being folded to straight to being folded again over her right shoulder.

Continuity mistake: When Ellie drives back to the observatory after hearing the first audio transmission from space, there are several shots of her holding the steering wheel with her left hand while giving instructions to the other men. In one shot you see that the wrist-watch is turned upside down: the watch face is on the inside of the arm. In the following shot of her in the car the watch face is on the outside of the arm.

Continuity mistake: During the scene in which Ellie is preparing to go in the pod through the alien machine built in Japan, she puts a small digital video camera on the side of her head (with a headphones-type headband holding it in place). During subsequent shots of her in the pod before it drops (and there are many from different angles), the camera's orientation changes noticeably from shot to shot.

Continuity mistake: When they realize the signal's counting prime numbers, watch the man in the red shirt behind Ellie when 11's being counted off. He's counting on his fingers, fills up his right hand, and moves to his left. The angle then changes to a closer shot, and his left hand is now curled up, with no numbers counted off on it at all, and he continues on his right.

Jon Sandys Premium member

Continuity mistake: Ellie tells Palmer her father died when she was nine years old. Later, when Mr. Hadden goes over her life history to impress her, the dates of her birth and her father's death indicate she was ten years old when he died.

Continuity mistake: While receiving the prime number pulses, there is a discontinuity between the pulse sequence being received and what is displayed on the monitors. As the sequence for "seven" starts (right after Ellie tells Fish to start counting the pulses), the camera switches to a computer monitor display which indicates the sequence for "seven" has already completed, and is logging the pulses of the sequence for "eleven".

solarpilot

Continuity mistake: When talking with Ellie on his plane Haddon's hand alternates to being on Ellie's shoulder in shots facing him to not touching her in shots behind him.

Factual error: The geography around the VLA in New Mexico is actually relatively flat - in fact one of the reasons why the array complex is there is because the land is flat. The canyon in the film was actually Canyon de Chelly, in Arizona, more than 170 miles (270 km) away. But in the film, when Ellie goes to the canyon, the radio antennas seem to be right there, insinuating that the canyon is part of the VLA's magical desert scenery.

solarpilot

More mistakes in Contact

Ellie Arroway: I work for a project called seti.
Palmer Joss: Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence? Wow, that's out there.

More quotes from Contact

Trivia: Filmmakers George Miller and Francis Ford Coppola both sued Warner Bros. over Contact. George Miller sued for breach of contract (as he was the original director before being fired and replaced by Robert Zemeckis), while Coppola sued because he claimed that he and Carl Sagan (the writer of Contact) had already developed the premise for a TV show in the 1970's which was never produced, before Sagan later used the idea for Contact in 1985. Both suits failed - Miller's firing was within contract and perfectly reasonable, and Coppola was dismissed (twice) because he had taken far too long to sue the company (if he sued when Sagan began working in the 80's, he may have won, but he waited until after the film's release in 1997 to sue).

More trivia for Contact

Question: How did they film the scenes where real historical figures (President Clinton, for instance) made speeches and comments they didn't make in real life?

Answer: They used real footage and used careful editing to make it appear as if they were talking about the events of the film.

Tailkinker Premium member

More questions & answers from Contact

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