Total Recall (1990)
- 1) When Bob McClane pitches the Secret Agent Ego Trip to Quaid, he tells him that by the time his trip is over he'll "get the girl, kill the bad guys, and save the entire planet!"
- 2) When Dr. Lull tosses Ernie a computer chip, he looks at it and says "That's a new one! 'Blue Sky on Mars'."
- 3) When Quaid threatens to shoot Dr. Edgemar in the Hilton suite, Edgemar describes the events that will happen almost verbatim throughout the rest of the movie.
In an interview with Cinefantastique magazine (April 1991) O'Bannon revealed his concept: "That wasn't supposed to be a three-fingered Martian hand print [on the machine]. That was supposed to have been a print of [Quaid's] hand which matched only his hand. Quaid, Earth's top secret agent, went to Mars and entered this compound. The machine killed him and created a synthetic duplicate. He is that synthetic duplicate. He cannot be killed because he can anticipate danger before it happens. He is also omnipotent and because he cannot be killed, Earth wants to kill him but cannot. That's why they go to all the trouble to erase his brain to make him think he's nobody. It's the only way they can control him. Audiences don't question it when movie heroes go through adventures and don't get killed. I thought it was clever to actually have a reason for it. At the end of the picture, Quaid puts his hand on the device and it all comes back to him, who he really is. His total recall of his identity is that he is a creation of a Martian machine. He is, in effect, a resurrection of the Martian race in a synthetic body. He turns and says to all the other characters, 'It's gonna be fun to play God'".
For some reason, O'Bannon's co-writer Ronald Shusett didn't go for this idea and decided instead to employ the rather hokey 'Mars gets an atmosphere' finale.