Best drama movie character mistakes of all time

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Awake picture

Character mistake: The endotracheal tube (breathing tube) was not secured to the patient. It is standard practice to secure this tube to the patient in order to keep it in place.

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The Towering Inferno picture

Character mistake: Just before the fire starts on the 81st floor, a man is shown telling an elderly couple that business offices only go as high as 80, and that 81-120 is exclusively residential. Not long after O'Hallorhan arrives, he asks Jernigan for a list of business tenants from 81-85, which Jernigan replies "most are yet to move in and those that have are not working at night". As said by the man earlier, these floors do not house business tenants, only residential. (00:12:05 - 00:43:45)


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Suggested correction: Chief O'Halloran asked Doug for the floor plans from 81-85. He then asked Jernigan for a list of business tenants. Chief O'Halloran did not ask for businesses on any specific floor.

Mike Motter

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Close Encounters of the Third Kind picture

Character mistake: When Ronnie is cutting the article about Roy's encounter out of the newspaper, the title of the article begins with "UFO's...", the apostrophe making it possessive. It correctly should have been "UFOs...", with no apostrophe making it plural as intended.

Kit Sullivan

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Suggested correction: You are incorrect. The article is actually correct. It is used as a contraction, not a possessive.

It's not a contraction. A plural acronym is simply "s" added to the acronym. An apostrophe never indicates plurality.

Charles Austin Miller

Suggested correction: There is no standard on how to pluralize initialisms or acronyms and either way is acceptable, depending on a person's preference. An apostrophe does not automatically make something possessive, such as using apostrophes in contractions to replace missing letters.


Nope. In contractions joining two words, apostrophes only replace vowels (typically the letter "o," such as in "hasn't" or "wouldn't" or "isn't," and most obviously with "it's" replacing the letter "i" in "it is"). In this case, the acronym "UFOs" stands for "Unidentified Flying Objects," and there is no vowel to replace between the "t" and the "s" (in fact, an apostrophe wouldn't replace any letter at all). So, the contraction argument is invalid. Using an apostrophe for "UFO's" makes the acronym singular possessive (such as in "The UFO's movements were erratic").

Charles Austin Miller

It seems you missed the point of my comment. What you're stating is an opinion on how to pluralize initialisms and acronyms. While many lean towards just adding an "s", many real life publications back in the 70's did in fact use and "apostrophe s" for initialisms and acronyms. (Notice how 70's isn't possessive or a contraction. But many prefer using "70s.").


"Many publications" were wrong (especially in the late 1970s) and followed poor literary and journalistic standards. No, it's not a "matter of opinion"; throwing in apostrophes where they are not appropriate is a matter of poor education in the English language.

Charles Austin Miller

The question is not whether using the apostrophe is "correct" or "appropriate." It's whether it was used by publications in the '70s. It was, therefore it is not a mistake.

You should be more educated when stating opinions then, because it wasn't about being wrong. It was about no set standard. For example "The Chicago Manual of Style" would recommend UFOs while "The New York Times Manual of Style and Usage" would recommend UFO's. Of course, both would recommend using the apostrophe when making single letters plural "A's" or p's and q's."


The New York Times manual of style is predictably bogus. I'm a professor of Journalism (Southwest Texas State University 1979 to 1987). I know what is proper.

Charles Austin Miller

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Apocalypse Now picture

Character mistake: After Captain Willard walks through the front door of the burnt out French plantation dock there's a close-up of Chief Phillips at the wheel the boat. He turns around and looks right at Chef and says, "Lance". (01:56:40)


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The Guardian picture The Guardian mistake picture

Character mistake: In the training room, after Randall is discussed as the record holder, the students are brought to attention. All but one is standing at attention, he is in the back on the right hand side, standing at ease.

Ian Hunt

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The Great Debaters picture

Character mistake: The definition of Satyagraha that Wilson, the butler at Harvard, gives is partially correct. Wilson defines it as "truth and fairness." A quick look at Wikipedia defines Satyagraha as "holding the truth." The definition from the online Merriam-Webster dictionary could be loosely described as "persistence of truth." (01:38:30)

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Midway picture

Character mistake: When the Japanese attack is imminent, a soldier loads the 50 caliber machine gun rounds into the box backwards, with the rounds facing the gunner.

Robert F Baptista

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The Two Popes picture

Character mistake: After the smoking seminarians joke, Bergoglio replies to Pope Benedict 's phrase about being alone "Isaiah 41, chapter 10." It's not chapter 10, but rather verse 10, of chapter 41. (00:52:50)

Sammo Premium member

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The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance picture

Character mistake: Stoddard in class says the founding document of the country can be added to with amendments. Pompey says it is the constitution written by Thomas Jefferson. Stoddard says 'declaration of independence'. Pompey was right, Stoddard incorrectly corrected him. It IS the constitution. The declaration can't be added to with amendments.

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Silent Running picture

Character mistake: While he may not have figured it out the moment he found the forest dying, certainly a botanist like Freeman Lowell would know plants need light to survive.

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Angels & Demons picture

Character mistake: When discussing the new Pope's name (Luke) at the end of the film, Langdon says: "There have been many Marks and Johns, but never a Luke." In fact, though there have been 23 Pope Johns, there has only been one Pope Mark - reigning for 9 months in 336.

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Dismissed picture

Character mistake: It is highly unlikely that the recipient of Mr. Butler's application for the professorship position would not only call him so soon, but ask him to come to her office right away (where she would humiliate him for the things he wrote in his essay on "qualities that make me a good teacher"). Moreover, her failure to listen to Mr. Butler and give due consideration to his assertion that someone else actually wrote those offensive things showed poor judgment, especially since she knew the person who referred Mr. Butler and spoke highly of him. Someone tampering with his application would make more sense than believing that Mr. Butler actually wrote those things that criticized the very college he was applying to and boasted so much about himself. That Mr. Butler was not able to say more to make his point believable is also problematic. He is an English teacher, so should have the vocabulary and mastering of techniques to make a convincing argument, but he failed to defend himself.


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Fever Pitch picture

Character mistake: In the Liverpool match the commentator says that Liverpool could win their 19th title, in the 1988-89 season Liverpool had 17 titles, and won their 18th title the year after in the 1989-90 season.

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In the Line of Fire picture

Character mistake: During the "heart attack prank" just before the paramedics get to Frank, Eastwood mistakenly opens his eye before the paramedics wake him.


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Love Actually picture

Character mistake: When Jamie is first speaking to Aurelia, he says "molto bueno", which the housekeeper woman tells him is Spanish. 'Molto' is actually Italian. (00:38:30)

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The Abyss picture

Character mistake: When they're reviving Lindsey, Bud screams "fight" and slaps her. watch as she closes her eyes on the second slap while she is supposed to be dead.

korporal kool

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An Officer and a Gentleman picture

Character mistake: When the candidates are sworn in, after Foley is thanked, he salutes and does an about face. He then steps off on his right foot. No Marine NCO would do this.

the woodchuck

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Dr. Strangelove picture

Character mistake: The so-called cobalt chlorium (.) G, which is supposed to be used in the Russian doomsday device, has, according to the Russian ambassador (and Dr. Strangelove), a half-life period of 93 years. He then states that it would contaminate Earth for 93 years. However, per definition half of the radioactivity would still be left after this period. (00:47:30)


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Deepwater Horizon picture Deepwater Horizon mistake picture

Character mistake: When Mike's wife is watching the news about the oil rig on fire, you can see the TV with part of the U.S. map on it and 'Mississippi' is misspelled as Missisippi. (01:09:10)

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I Know Who Killed Me picture

Character mistake: The coroner examining Jennifer Toland's body reports that her fingers were cut off first, then the metacarpals (palm bones) were removed later. Given that when she is found her entire limb is missing up to her mid-forearm, how could he possibly tell not only that the missing part was not all removed at once, but which bits were cut off in which order?

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