WarGames

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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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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Trivia: A very early reference to computer "firewalls" is mentioned in this film.

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William Bergquist

Trivia: Broderick changes school information from his home computer just as he does in Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Both mothers were also real estate agents.

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William Bergquist

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David Lightman: [On the computer] Hello, are you still playing the game?
Joshua: Of course. I should reach Defcon 1 and release my missiles in 28 hours. Would you like to see some projected kill ratios?
David Lightman: Sixty-nine percent of the housing destroyed. Seventy-two million people dead. [Types into computer] Is this a game or is it real?
Joshua: What's the difference?

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Stephen Falken: The whole point was to find a way to practise nuclear war without destroying ourselves. To get the computers to learn from mistakes we couldn't afford to make. Except, I never could get Joshua to learn the most important lesson.
David Lightman: What's that?
Stephen Falken: Futility. That there's a time when you should just give up.
Jennifer: What kind of a lesson is that?
Stephen Falken: Did you ever play tic-tac-toe?
Jennifer: Yeah, of course.
Stephen Falken: But you don't anymore.
Jennifer: No.
Stephen Falken: Why?
Jennifer: Because it's a boring game. It's always a tie.
Stephen Falken: Exactly. There's no way to win. The game itself is pointless! But back at the war room, they believe you can win a nuclear war. That there can be "acceptable losses."

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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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Bishop73

Question: Although I don't know for sure, I believe I read somewhere that the voice used for Joshua was John Wood (Falken) recording words backwards then reversing the tape so the words would come out forwards but in a machine-like sound. Is this correct?

Chosen answer: Writer Walter Parkes explained they had John Wood read the dialog backwards to give it a flat tone (i.e. Game a play to like you would). Then after rearranging it they would synthesize and process it to give it an electronic quality.

Bishop73

Question: At the beginning of the film, who were the two men in uniform and why did one pull a gun on the other?

Chosen answer: They were erroneously alerted that an actual nuclear attack was underway, and they had been trained to respond by firing a nuclear warhead. However, one soldier was unconvinced that the US was actually under attack, and he wanted further confirmation from his superiors. The other soldier insisted that they follow protocol and fire the missiles. One man alone cannot launch the missiles, it takes two, and the one with the gun is attempting to force his partner to follow through on launching the weapon.

raywest Premium member

Question: When Joshua calls David back, why doesn't David just instruct Joshua to "end game"?

Chosen answer: The short answer to your question is that, had David instructed Joshua to "end game," and had it succeeded, there would be no movie. In context, at that juncture, he was just freaked out about being unable to lose the connection to Joshua. Further, he probably didn't try at that point because he did not yet realize the magnitude of what was transpiring. Recall it wasn't until later in the film that he even realized that Joshua didn't draw distinctions between fantasy and reality, or that the game was running to its logical conclusion with actual weapon systems. Had David even tried to end the game, it probably wouldn't have worked. Joshua had to learn the lesson of futility (playing tic-tac-toe) before abandoning the game's objective.

Michael Albert

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