Mistakes you never noticed in blockbuster movies
Movies are not reality, but we expect filmmakers to at least attempt to make it look real. But even some of the best movies ever made, such as Gladiator, Star Wars, and Titanic have colossal mistakes that can’t be unseen. While mistakes are common, knowing the reasons behind them are not. Here are some of Hollywood’s worst, and the stories behind them.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl
Near the end of the movie, when Captain Jack Sparrow finally gets the Black Pearl back, some cowboy crewman came waltzing through the shot and stopped to have a look at the scenery.
“On deck, you scabrous dogs!” Johnny Depp yelled while playing Captain Jack Sparrow at the end of the first installment of Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean series. Experts have attributed the error to the fact that it took so many people, experts and extras, to make the movie happen. Well, this guy is just staring out to sea, without a worry in the world, leaving us saying, “Arrrgh!”
The Hunger Games
Early on in the movie, Katniss Everdeen picked up her first bow and arrow, and it shows: Her grip on the bowstring was entirely incorrect, and her face was so close to the string it would take her nose off.
We saw Jennifer Lawrence make some incredibly accurate and fast bow shots in The Hunger Games series. However, her technique was refined for Hollywood, and was disappointing, considering she got many lessons from a five-time Olympic archer, Khatuna Lorig. But Lorig later said, “Let’s face it, it’s for the movie, and she needed to look good for the camera.” Well, she did!
In the first major battle of Braveheart, on the fields of Stirling, as the English cavalry bore down on William Wallace and the Scottish army, some idiot parked their van right in the middle of the shot.
Mel Gibson, playing William Wallace, had just delivered his inspiring speech, the Scots showed the English their birthday suits, and were just about to make minced meat out of the English cavalry when this damn mini-van nearly ruins the shot. The movie is riddled with tiny errors, from weapons made of sponge to out-of-sequence shots. But the van in the back is the worst. Can you spot it the next time you watch it?
Chris Kyle is clearly in distress, and having a difficult time adjusting to home life, when he grabs his baby doll, holds it close, then moves the hand to make it look like the doll is an actual baby.
Bradley Cooper was not a fan of using the plastic baby, saying later, “I couldn’t believe it, like, I couldn’t believe that we were working with a plastic baby, I was like, ‘this is nuts!'” Producer Jason Hall tried to explain later, but fans weren’t buying it when he tweeted: “Hate to ruin the fun but real baby No. 1 showed up with a fever. Real baby No. 2 was no-show.” Yeah, right.
Raiders of the Lost Ark
Drinking a bottle of whiskey with a monkey isn’t what’s wrong with this picture, as a stagehand in street clothes waltzes through the scene to the left of Harrison Ford.
Director Steven Spielberg initially had the idea to make Harrison Ford’s title character, Indiana Jones, a drunk. There’s certainly plenty of drinking in Raiders of the Lost Ark, but that subsides as the film progresses. However, the guy in the background wearing jeans and a t-shirt clearly didn’t get the memo, as he looks so out of place — he’s clearly the drunkest one on the set.
John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson, as hitmen Vincent Vega and Jules Winnfield, respectively, look on with bullet holes in the wall. The only problem is, nobody has shot at them yet.
Vincent and Jules have just shot two men — one who they dispatch in a vindictively theological way. But what they don’t know is that a man is waiting in the bathroom to shoot them! You know what happens next, but before the man busts in, the bullet holes are already on the wall. They weren’t there when they entered the apartment, but there they are. Some suspect Tarantino tomfoolery, while others, correctly realize, that it’s a continuity error.
Star Wars: A New Hope
As a squad of stormtroopers heads for the control room, keep an eye on the stormtrooper to the right, and notice how much taller he is than everyone else.
In 1976, when the first Star Wars movie was being filmed, actor Laurie Goode was having stomach troubles. He had already gone to the bathroom four times and was thinking about going again when it was time to shoot. On the last take, he was feeling so miserable, that he forgot to look where he was walking. To his surprise, the shot actually made it into the final cut.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
No spell that Harry Potter ever cast could remove the cameraman on left, who’s ruining the shot, and creating one of the most ridiculous film errors in history.
This mistake appears during a duel, just when Snape was pulling Malfoy off the floor. Since it’s only for a moment, it’s very difficult to spot, but according to sources, this is just one out of 20 times in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets when a stagehand or a body part of a stagehand is visible on-screen. No magic can erase all that.
In the first battle scene in the Colosseum, a chariot is toppled over, revealing that it was a gas tank that caused the chariot to roll.
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus! What the heck is that? According to sources, a gas cylinder was attached to an “arm,” and when activated, it extended and made the chariot look like it ran over something. If activated in full, it could flip the thing over. Set coordinators used this to great effect, and later admitted, “I guess I screwed up on how I was going to keep it covered when it flipped over on its side.”
Saving Private Ryan
No, Tom Hanks doesn’t destroy that Tiger tank with a Colt .45 pistol, but somehow, someway, after it explodes, he manages to make it disappear.
We all remember the moment in the final battle of Saving Private Ryan when Captain Miller was mortally wounded and started shooting “spitballs” at a 50-ton Tiger tank. Luckily, a P-51 arrives just in time to drop a bomb on the German Panzer. The only problem was, a moment later, the tank was gone! This one was chalked up to the confusion that’s inevitable with such an enormous production.
Not to pick on Tom Hanks movies, but in Forrest Gump, when Gump becomes “a real shrimp boat captain,” and a hurricane wipes out a shrimping boat fleet, Gump and Lieutenant Dan make an enormous haul. The only problem is, all those shrimp are dead!
It’s not the color of the shrimp that’s the problem or the lack of movement. What’s really wrong with this picture is that every single shrimp in the shot has been beheaded! We’re all used to seeing headless shrimp when served on our plates, but when they come out of the sea, they look … ahem … a little more alive. We can’t blame Gump though, as there’s no evidence Bubba told him what to look for.
Wizard of Oz
If anyone said, “ruby red slippers,” they immediately would think of The Wizard of Oz. So that leaves us scratching our head in this scene: Where did Dorothy’s slippers go?
This happens in the scene where the trees begin tossing apples at the Scarecrow and Dorothy. The black shoes were probably more comfortable, and we’ll cut editors a break since it was 1939. However, in August 2005 the slippers pulled another disappearing act when they were stolen from the Judy Garland Museum. No worries though, the FBI clicked their heels and got them back in July 2018.
If you can stop staring at Julia Roberts for just a moment, you’ll notice that one moment she’s eating a croissant, and in the next, she’s eating a pancake. So which is it?
In the scene where Vivian Ward and Edward Lewis wake together for the first time, they devour a smorgasbord of delicious breakfast food. However, there are continuity errors all over the place. Roberts goes from bagel to pancake, takes a couple of bites, then the pancake only has one bite taken out of it. Nobody notices anyway though, because they’re too busy looking at Julia Roberts in a robe.
The Usual Suspects
“Mayday!” We can almost hear the captain saying. “We’ve lost two engines!” Count ’em folks, as that was a different plane in the two separate shots.
Just about everyone recognizes the airframe of a 747, and when it turns into a much smaller, two-engine 767, the continuity error is obvious. It’s curious that such a simple mistake would get past editors, who pull off one of the greatest twists in cinema history. Spoiler alert! Imagine if Kevin Spacey had been wearing a gold watch the entire movie? Looks like they got the big stuff correct.
If you’re thinking, “They didn’t have flashlights in 1912!” You’re incorrect. But those flashlights should project a yellow beam, and yes, we’re going to nitpick on this one because filmmakers paid so much attention to detail.
Can we nitpick on something so small? Yes, we can. Remember the backseat of the 1912 Renault Type CB Coupe de Ville where Jack and Rose get hot and heavy? Well, it can be seen being hoisted onto the ship at the beginning of the movie, and it was based on a car that was actually found at the bottom of the ocean. With that attention to detail, we gotta call this one out.
At the very beginning of the movie Casino, we see Robert De Niro walk to his car, turn on the ignition, then suddenly it’s no longer DeNiro, and it’s a dummy that gets blown to smithereens.
Director Martin Scorsese is probably the biggest proponent of film editing, as his movies constantly move from one scene to another seamlessly, despite looking like it was cut by a person with ADD. It’s likely that he didn’t catch the mistake until after filming when the cost of a re-shoot would be far too much to be worth it.
Well, Reese Witherspoon looks like she’s doing her job, looking smart, sassy, and beautiful, but all the girl needed to do was drink some water from the fountain, and it looks like that didn’t happen.
This extra, who is in the movie for exactly five-seconds, was probably nervous and forgot to actually drink water out of the water fountain (or maybe she’s a germaphobe). But when we break it down, she was just doing her job: She was pretending like she was drinking water aka “acting.” Ok, we don’t buy that either, as she definitely made a mistake. You had one job!
Quantum of Solace
Speaking of “you had one job,” take a look to the right of Daniel Craig in Quantum of Solace, and look at the guy pushing air with his broom.
Is he mentally unstable? We’ll probably never know, but what we do know is that this extra had one of the easiest jobs Hollywood could come up with, and he managed to make it an unmitigated disaster. If we had to guess, given the extraordinary amount of takes in Bond movies, this guy’s back was probably exhausted after doing it 25+ times. That or he’s lazy. You be the judge.
The Fast and the Furious
In the final scene of The Fast and the Furious, the first movie in the franchise, Vin Diesel is nowhere to be found.
In the final scene of The Fast and the Furious, Brian O’Connor and Dominic Toretto engage in one last quarter-mile race. In the end, a semi appears out of nowhere sending Toretto’s 1970 Dodge Charger R/T flipping in the air and slamming into the ground. Given how many stunt drivers were used, and often they were, it’s a wonder there aren’t more of these errors.
In this sad scene in the Western classic Tombstone, it’s raining in Kurt Russell’s heart, on his head, but nowhere else.
Wyatt Earp just had a terrible night, as one of his brothers was shot, and the other passed away. He walks outside, and despite the fact that his rivals have a vendetta against him, they don’t shoot him. They must’ve been in complete awe that it could be raining on one side of the street and not the other. Actually, it looks like one of those cartoons where it’s only raining over Daffy Duck.
The Dark Knight Rises
We’re not sure who to blame here: The Gotham Times, or director Chris Nolan, as it seems that even with some of the best minds in Hollywood working on this beloved movie (The Dark Knight Rises), somehow, they spelled the word “Heist” incorrectly.
This scene comes when Bruce Wayne and Alfred are looking at Cat Woman’s file. It’s actually one of many mistakes in this movie, but in this case, we’re going to cut the crew some slack. That whole “‘i’ before ‘e’ except after ‘c'” rule doesn’t work for “protein,” “their,” or “heist.” Hmmm, that’s “weird.”
The Predator has Major Dutch dead to rights, until lights a bomb, and runs for it, only to dive into a tree branch that suddenly changes shape.
Predator rules! But we can’t ignore this minor mistake in this major blockbuster. That tree branch in the top picture looks, well, like a tree branch. But as Schwarzenegger dives into it, about to snap it in half and send him into a free-fall tumble, it suddenly becomes straight. They must’ve had to replace the branch several times as the stunt was repeated over and over again. Still a rad scene.
When Kevin McCallister realizes he’s home alone, he takes some liberties, including flying his sled down the stairs into the wall.
In 1990’s Home Alone, Culkin uses his home as his own private “fun house.” The film is riddled with errors, and given the subject matter, filmmakers were probably not that careful in the “realism” factor. Yes, this mistake was obvious, but like that’s the most unrealistic thing about this movie.
Speaking of dolls, that clearly isn’t Tobey Maguire, as Spiderman has taken the form of a mannequin. And as for Kirsten Dunst’s hair, just which way is it actually blowing?
Reddit blew up this blockbuster mistake in 2015, and for those of us who thought 2002 special effects were “special,” we got schooled. It’s been confirmed that when Spiderman came swooping down to save MJ that it was indeed a mannequin (a very stiff one), and on-set technician’s botched which way the wind was blowing. At least they swapped out the mannequin for the iconic, upside-down kiss scene.
North by Northwest
Eva Marie Saint was about to fire that gun at Cary Grant in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1959 classic, North by Northwest, but before she did, it looks like the little boy on the right already knew what was about to happen.
Hitchcock didn’t have video playback when he filmed his classics, so this little boy slipped through the cracks. According to sources, after many, the little boy became savvy to the gunfire and did the logical thing by plugging his ears. Seems like the courteous thing to do would be to alert Cary Grant’s character, George Kaplan (or was it Roger Thornhill?), that (spoiler alert), the gun is filled with blanks!
Trick or treat?! In this case, trick, as we’re having a hard time believing that there are palm trees in Haddonfield, Illinois, where the film takes place.
Here we have a little Hollywood magic (or awfulness), as Laurie Strode is crossing the street in a fictional Illinois town. Perhaps they should’ve shot on location in Illinois because those palm trees in the background make it clear that they’re actually in Southern California. Ah! Scary!
Bad Boys (1983)
In the history of movies, you won’t hear the 1983 New York, teenage brawler movie, Bad Boys, come up too often, with one notable exception: The worst mistake in movie history. Just look at the cameraman! ‘Nough said.
Toward the end of the movie, Mick O’Brien gets in a fight with Paco, and the two roll around the scene in an epic battle royale. But we’re going to have to slap the “idiot” tag onto these filmmakers, who left one of the filmmakers, with his handheld Panavision camera, in the middle of the fricken shot! Bad boys indeed.
Jurassic Park (1993)
At the point when the plot begins to thicken, Dennis Nedry steals “Dino DNA,” except that these dinosaur names are spelled incorrectly!
Ok, let’s get this straight: No one knows how to spell “Tyrannosaurus” or “Stegosaurus,” but if you’re making a movie about dinosaurs, you should probably get that right. Theories abound that this was actually intentional, as it’s meant to show the lack of care from millionaire John Hammond and his scientists. This makes sense, as this misspelling seems ridiculous.
Near the end of the movie, after Bishop has been torn in half by the mother alien, we can see that the rest of his body is protruding through a hole in the floor.
You’ll have to get your VHS tape out to see this error, as Director James Cameron has since covered it up using CGI. Lance Henriksen, who played the role of Bishop, spent almost three days in that hole, which wouldn’t have been a problem, except that they used milk for his cyborg fluids. “It was really rank because the milk had spoiled,” said one set hand. “It smelled disgusting. Poor Lance was in it that whole time, and I don’t know how he did it.