Really obvious mistakes in Movies and TV

This is strictly a matter of opinion. Misrepresentations, anachronisms and mistakes are common in films and television shows. To me, there are some that can “pass” – using the word “thug” in 13th century England – and others are unforgivable – “the magic microscope.”

Last week’s CSI, a character had to get stored tissue from an autopsy many years ago. This lady walked into a (presumably cold) room filled with wire metal shelves with labeled jars on them; she picked out the container she wanted and the plot ground on. I laughed out loud. Occasionally, I have to pick up stored human bits. If I’m lucky, someone from pathology will have the sample fished out for me. Usually, I’m reaching into a chest freezer with liquid nitrogen at the bottom quietly praying that I don’t slip and become flash-frozen.

Have you seen any mistakes that are blatant?

Mistakes involving computers could fill their own thread. But we’ll start with that laughably stupid scene in Enemy of the State where the evil government guys are looking at a surveillance picture of Will Smith, and they want to see what he’s carrying, but it’s on the other side of Will (away from the camera) so his body is blocking the view.

What do they do? They use the computer to flip the picture over, so they can look at the other side. Cartoon physics at its finest :rolleyes:

My ex-wife and I used to watch the Action Pack, with the Xena and the Hercules. I like a good myth-mash as much as the next guy, but they started a whole plot arc involving Caesar. Julius Caesar.

Now a lot of the plots also centered around the aftermath of the Trojan War. Aeschylus was the son of Priam, King of Troy. He founded the city of Rome, long before there was anything like an empire. How the hell can… well, anyway that was really annoying.

Does “Plan 9 From Outer Space” count?

I’ve always thought the way Superman is depicted utilizing his super-powers defied belief. “Hmm. I have super-speed and heat vision than can instantly melt steel, but I’ll stand here and let them pump bullets into me that do nothing but ricochet into innocent bystanders, then engage in hand-to-hand combat with any super-powered bad guys so he could possily beat me senseless.”

I always think, geez, I could be a better superhero than Superman.

I thought those shows were blatantly, unapologetically, and consistently anachronistic throughout their runs. But I never actually watched the show other than a scene here and there. Was my impression, then, incorrect?


IIRC, when *Hercules * started, one of the producers said something like “We’re going to show no respect for history or mythology–we’re just going to have fun.”

The movie Stargate.

The entire plot device to get Daniel Jackson into the project is to have him decode the symbols on the Stargate. On earth they can only manage to get to the 6th symbol because they don’t know the 7th - the point of origin symbol (Earth)

It seems to me they could try each one (It only looked like there were about 50), and if they open the gate, send a little rover camera through and see what it sees.

They didn’t really need Daniel at all.

Same with the return to earth. Later in the movie they had all but the last symbol. Why not scratch the last symbol on a rock and tie a note that says “if this landed on earth, please open the gate and chuck this rock back through”.

Yes, there were tons of other things in this movie that didn’t make sense, but this was a major story device. They could have tweaked this a bit.

A lot of Independence Day. How does a teeny-tiny nuke blow up a moon sized ship ? Why wasn’t the bunker and everything for a great ways around destroyed by the shockwave when the 15 mile wide ship fell ? When the first nuke failed, why didn’t they try ten, or a hundred ? Why were they trying to blow up a 15 mile wide ship with the kind of tiny non-nuclear missles a fighter can carry ? Why does it take the aliens a 15 mile wide ship to not quite match what we can do with an ICBM, at much longer range ? When the 15 mile wide ships move, why isn’t the pressure wave flattening everything ?

I just watched an episode of Columbo that hinged on the fact that there is no poison ivy in the Los Angeles area. Both Columbo and the suspect had rashes caused by urushiol, the irritant in poison ivy, and Columbo had to figure out how this was possible considering that there was no poison ivy within hundreds of miles.

There may not be any poison ivy in L.A., but there’s plenty of poison oak, a close relative that also has urushiol. Columbo’s “proof” falls apart given this fact.

I’ve mentioned this one before: in one of the Mission Impossible movies the starting scene takes place during Easter in Seville.

The dresses you’d normally see in Seville are along these lines. The ones seen in the movie are like these: falleras from Valencia. The fallas take place March 12-19, it isn’t even the right time of year :stuck_out_tongue:

I realize that for American standards two towns that are a 7-hr drive away (according to viamichelin) are almost neighbors, but on cultural terms it’s like making a movie about rodeos set in Maine. On Christmas. That movie tanked completely, in Spain.

As a child, I noticed an Indian in a western with a vaccination mark on his arm.

In the first season of SG1 (Torment of Tantalus?) it was pointed out that they actually did succeed in creating a wormhole back in the 40’s or 50’s and Katherine’s (the old woman who brought Daniel on to the team) fiance/husband went through and was lost, so they closed the program down again.
How he survived until the early 90’s with no food or water is another glaring error though.

Also MELFs (large rover cameras) are used extensively in the series, though technically you may have a point given that the original movies sequels are apparently going to pretend that SG1 doesn’t exist.

Almost every episode of CSI involves a blurry CCTV image of a suspect which is magically “enhanced” to show a full-res close-up of the person.

Chess boards should have a white square in the right-hand corner. Often messed up by TV and film.

To be fair both ‘From Russia with Love’ and the Harry Potter game were correct.
As for the original ‘Thomas Crown affair’, I was too entranced by Faye Dunaway to look at the board… :eek: :cool:

There’s a gold watch and aeroplane trails in El Cid, too.

I don’t feel particularly comfortable defending this movie, as there’s a great deal of bad science in it, but I thought it was the placement of the nuke that made the difference - presumably it was near to critical systems inside the motheship (although the question then becomes how the attackers knew in advance this would be the case)

On the Sopranos last night on A&E Christopher was mock-executed by a hitman who spoke Russian. Before shooting, the Russian made the sign of the cross on his own chest - left-to-right, Roman Catholic style.

For som,e reason, people like to depict balloons in medieval or Renaissance festivals. I could accept inflated bladders on sticks or the like, but people insist on putting in brightly-colored floating balloons. Walt Disney’s Robin Hood did this, and I’ll let Disney slide a bit, but others have done it, too (Shrek has the inflated frog and snake balloons floating up as if helium-filled), and not just in cartoons (I’ve seen 'em, but can’t recall the titles). The idea of stretchy, inflatable balloons is absurd in Med/Ren. Europe. The idea of brightly colored items like this a further burden on credibility, and having them float as if filled with helium or hydrogen is simply ridiculous.

Another offender is telescopes ('m writing a brief piece about tis now). The 1920 film The Golem shows Rabbi Loew using one in 16th century Prague to make astrological observations. The Kevin Costner Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves shows his Moorish companion with one circa 1195. Atlantis: The Lost Continent shows Atlanteans using one as a sighting device for their Magic Crystal Laser-Thing (although that’s among the film’s less outrageous elements)

I’ve always wondered how Superman has managed to pump himself up so much,being super strong he never puts any strain on his muscles ,which is the start of the process of muscle bulking so technically he should be built like a pipe cleaner ;albeit a super strong pipe cleaner .