15 Movie Mistakes You’ll Never Unsee


15 Movie Mistakes You’ll Never Unsee

Movies are huge productions–they can involve hundreds or thousands of people, each with specific jobs. Even the most unwatchable film is a complex combination of light, sound, design, writing, and performance. Not only that, but they’re also running on tight schedules with strict budgets. With so many people, roles, and constraints, it’s no surprise that movies occasionally overlook important details. Maybe the actor they’d cast for a single scene was suddenly unavailable, or a sharp change in weather forced the crew to shoot on an accelerated timeline. Maybe someone forgot that we only had 45 states at the turn of the 20th century, or didn’t remember that one of the props didn’t exist in the year the movie is set.

And so people pretend to sweep or they forget to set down their coffee cup out of frame between takes. And you know what? It’s okay. These movies are made by humans, and mistakes happen. We love to see these misfires in movies occasionally because they ground the movie and remind us that while the story might be fictional, the movie itself is a real thing created by real people.

These are some of our favorite movie mistakes from over the years. You definitely know some of them–like the Stormtrooper who bangs his head on the Death Star. But we hope you’ll find a few new ones to enjoy with us along the way.

1. Stormtrooper Head Trauma: Star Wars (1977)

Let’s start with one of the best-known flubs in movie history. In Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, C-3PO and R2-D2 are on one side of a door, trying to help their good friends escape the crushing death of a trash compactor. The droids hide just in time to avoid being caught, but as the soldiers flood into the room, you can see one of the troopers knock his head on the rising door. When Leia meets Luke for the first time, she comments that he’s a little short for a Stormtrooper. This poor guy, on the other hand, seemed to be just a little tall for the job. Director George Lucas liked the mistake, because the notorious tinkerer added a sound effect for a later re-release, accentuating it instead of editing it out.

2. The Other Kind of Airbrushing: Quantum of Solace (2008)

Everything that happens on a movie screen is acting, from the guy who just got shot in the chest to the person running from the gunshot. The janitors aren’t really cleaning, either, believe it or not. That’s apparent nowhere more than a scene in the second of Daniel Craig’s James Bond films, Quantum of Solace. In the background of one shot, a man with a push broom is brushing…nothing. The brush is visibly above the ground. On one hand, this could’ve been bad acting or a mistake. But the thing about push brooms is that they kick up a lot of dust, and movie sets are made to be as predictable as possible so that the million-dollar shot doesn’t end up costing two million. The guy holding the push broom may have had a directive to not actually apply the brush to the ground, and the camera just happened to catch him at a rough moment. Either way, it’s funny to see something so obviously fake in a movie that tries hard to make wild stunts believable.

3. Time Travelers on a Doomed Voyage: Titanic (1997)

There’s an unmissable line flub when Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio) asks Rose (Kate Winslet) to sit “Over on the bed… the couch!” But that’s not the one we’re focused on, because Cameron spotted that and loved the way it added to the scene. We’re interested in the anachronisms. The Titanic sank in April of 1912. During the movie, Jack tells Rose that he went fishing on Lake Wissota in Wisconsin, and another character wields a pistol that gun nerds have identified as an M1911A1 pistol, based on the specific detail of the pistol’s hammer. Lake Wissota is a man-made lake that wasn’t under construction until at least 1915–meaning th

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