In the scene in the auto parts store where Jack confronts Sandy, he asks her to write down the name of the guy who hired her (Jeb?). However at several points in the movie they make a specific point to show that he doesn't need to write things down to remember them.

  • He remembers the serial number from the sniper rifle after specifically stating that he doesn't need to take notes.

  • He specifically states that he doesn't need to write down the quarry address.

Is this simply a small plot oversight, or was he making a point when he asks Sandy to write the address down?

  • 2
    If he a photographic memory, the address has to be seen (written) to allow him to see it and if it was said by oral, he may forgets it.
    – Larme
    Dec 29, 2013 at 7:43
  • 1
    @Larme perhaps I used the term wrong but your hypothesis is not consistent with the way it is presented in the movie. He makes a specific point of saying that he doesn't need to write down the quarry address to remember it when it is spoken to him.
    – DQdlM
    Dec 29, 2013 at 12:48
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    @Larme ... Slightly off topic here, but in actuality having a photographic ("eidetic" is the actual term) memory is not all about seeing. It can be heard and recalled just the same. Dec 29, 2013 at 17:30
  • @Paulster2 : I didn't know that part of photographic memory. I always thought it was visual only.
    – Larme
    Dec 29, 2013 at 18:33
  • Maybe it was so he could see and then later recognize her handwriting. Or the letterhead was important...It's been awhile since I saw it. I don't specifically remember what happens later.
    – Ben Plont
    Dec 30, 2013 at 2:07

1 Answer 1


Jack Reacher's creator does state that Reacher has a photographic memory

He also has a photographic memory and a keen eye for details that ordinary investigators overlook.


I've watched the scene with Jack and Sandy twice and I can't pickup any reason why he asked her to write it down. He barely looks at it and we don't get to see it. He doesn't do anything with the paper later on either.

I did notice that she continues to talk while she writes it down though. This may have been to not bore the audience with her rambling off an address that would be unimportant to the viewers. It was also a more natural scene (as you and I would have played it out). The scene with the quarry address seemed more like posturing than to show off his great memory. He was trying to intimidate the other guy after all.

Unfortunately I've looked a great deal and there just doesn't seem to be any specific reason so I can only offer speculation that he may have intended to give the paper to someone else (possibly a deleted scene?).

Edit: I've been reading the book and in the book, reacher doesn't get the address from Sandy, he gets it from Gary. He forces Gary to pull Jeb's employment file and get the address from it which would require Gary to write it down.

The scene with Sandy was quite a bit different in the movie than the book, so it looks like they combined the two interactions from the book into a single one with Sandy.

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