Best drama movie plot holes of all time

Planet of the Apes picture

Plot hole: The "video history" of the crashed USAF ship makes it very clear that the planet is uninhabited when they "landed". I can understand how a race of apes develops - they had a bunch of them on board. I can understand how a race of humans develops - they are descendants of the original crew. What I don't understand is...where the heck did all the horses come from?

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Suggested correction: According to the backstory, the space station Oberon was dedicated to genetic modification sciences. They were actually experimenting with animal genes in the safety of space (which kind of makes sense). Given that the Oberon was a truly gigantic space station, it's not too much of a speculation that they were experimenting on many different types of animals (not just apes). When the Oberon crashed on Ashlar, half its crew was killed, but half survived with a number of ship's systems still functional, and they continued their genetic research, possibly producing a number of Earthly species on the otherwise uninhabited planet.

Charles Austin Miller

I think this should've been posted as a question, rather than a plot hole.

Charles Austin Miller

That's just a wild guess. There hasn't been a single mention of horses on board the Oberon. Even if there were, why only horses?

lionhead

Wild guess? The Oberon was experimenting in genetic modification, which implies a broad range of research...and not just on great apes. The Oberon was gigantic enough to be an Ark.

Charles Austin Miller

So where are all the other animals?

lionhead

Suggested correction: Humans refer to parts of their own planet as uninhabited even though even though they are crawling with animals - vast areas of the Arctic are "uninhabited" even though polar bears and seals are found there. Were we to find a planet with nothing but primitive horses on it, we would label it as uninhabited. Apes and humans came from the crashed spaceship, horses were always there.

Which still makes no sense whatsoever.

Charles Austin Miller
Double Jeopardy picture

Plot hole: For a convicted murder who violated her parole and assaulted her parole officer while escaping custody Ashley Judd moves around the country and even boards airplanes with little to no problems.

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Suggested correction: She was simply careful. There's constant manhunts for much more serious felons and parolees on the lam who seem capable of moving around without getting caught.

Jeepers Creepers picture

Plot hole: This huge demon monster flies around and is seen by at least 30 people, and the day after this demon kills all these people. Everyone just goes on with their daily life. Where the hell is the FBI and the National Guard, this thing just killed 10 people and there's no search the next day for this demon that killed about 5 police officers?

The Cell picture

Plot hole: Peter goes into Carl's mind to save Catherine. When he's in there he sees the tank with the water nymph. On the tank are strange symbols which provide the FBI with the clue needed to find the latest victim. Makes sense so far. But, go back to the scene just after the FBI have captured the comatose killer and are looking in his basement. The FBI are looking at the contraption that the killer uses to suspend himself over the victim. On the contraption is the same symbol seen later on the water nymph's tank. Why didn't the FBI follow up the symbol then?

Edward Scissorhands picture

Plot hole: At the end of the film, we see Edward carving ice sculptures in his mansion. How did he get the ice up there? First of all, it takes place in a warm climate and I didn't see a freezer up there in the castle. He couldn't have gotten ice from town because firstly he had scissors for hands and couldn't have gripped the ice. And, even if by some miracle he could, he wouldn't be able to buy any from town because everyone in town but Kim was convinced that Edward was dead, she told everyone that they killed each other. And Kim didn't bring it to him because she told her granddaughter in the end that she never saw him again after that night. So where did he get that ice?

The Day of the Jackal picture

Plot hole: When the French conclude - incorrectly - that Charles Calthrop is the Jackal, they contact the British authorities and obtain his file photograph from the passport office. The photograph is of Edward Fox in character as the Jackal - but it shouldn't be! The Jackal and Calthrop have no connection. The Jackal never used his identity and did not apply for a false passport in his name. The photo should have been of Edward Hardwicke in character as Charles Calthrop, who appears in the closing minutes of the film. The two actors do not look anything like each other.

Hollow Man picture

Plot hole: The must be a lot of dumb scientists in Sebastian's lab. While defibrillating the invisible gorilla, (s)he becomes completely visible for a moment. However, not once do the scientists consider that applying a mild electrical shock to the system renders the invisible animal visible again - that electricity may be the key to the whole invisibility problem. They don't even comment upon the fact that the gorilla does become visible.

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Suggested correction: They have been working on making the animals visible for a while now - perhaps using electricity has been used on the animals and discarded because the amount needed to make a animal visible is too high (note that Sebastian receives a massive electric shock and is still not made fully visible).

Adding a silly Dieux ex Machina explanation to a plot hole doesn't make it less of a plot hole! Electricity makes invisible animals visible. Nothing else the scientists tried came even close to working, and they are given the answer on a plate. Defibrillators deliver quite a mild electric shock so it is obvious that they don't have to electrocute an animal to restore it to visibility.

8

Fargo (1996)

Fargo picture

Plot hole: After the kidnappers kill the trooper and then one chases after the 2 eyewitnesses you can see that they are on a straight road (no turns and he catches up to them fairly quickly) but the next morning when Marge arrives on the scene of the 2 bodies she arrives from the direction of the trooper's body (the first shooting). After examining the bodies of the eyewitnesses she asks her deputy "where the trooper is" and the Deputy points in the direction she just came from and states "down the road a bit" how did she miss it? She would have had to have driven right past the trooper's crime scene to get to the 2 bodies.

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Suggested correction: The trooper wasn't visible from the road, he was dragged into the ditch. She also could have been asking if he was in the hospital or morgue.

rswarrior

9

2012 (2009)

2012 picture

Plot hole: Given the amount of destruction all over the world, it is HIGHLY unlikely the use of phones by general public would be possible, especially internationally. If any lines of communication were working, they would be completely jammed.

krameruser
Air Force One picture

Plot hole: At the start when the guys are infiltrating that building they parachute down to the roof. They are dressed in black so they can't be seen, but their parachutes are white. (00:02:50)

Body Heat picture

Plot hole: Considering the incredibly elaborate plans Maddy makes to have her husband murdered after having him sign a will she knows is invalid so he dies intestate and she - as his widow - gets his entire fortune, you'd think she would have worked out one little fact - Edmund Walker does not die intestate. It is established in the film that the dud will written by Ned Racine replaces a previous, valid will which bequeaths half his fortune to his niece Heather. When Racine's will is declared invalid under Florida law the previous will takes precedence and Heather and Maddy split the fortune. In no way will Maddy get the lot.

Law Abiding Citizen picture

Plot hole: Inmediately after Jamie Foxx finds the bomb in the city hall, and he says, "We don't tell the mayor anything", we see Gerard Butler arriving to his property next to the prison, and finally he enters his jail cell. So, in the time between Gerard Butler's arrival to the property and his entrance to the jail cell, Jamie Foxx thought about a plan, picked up the bomb, passed through the traffic and security checkpoints, talked to the warden to get access to the prison, entered solitary, handcuffed the bomb, and still had time to wait for Gerard Butler's arrival.

Behind Enemy Lines picture

Plot hole: As Burnett runs through the minefield, he clearly runs right into much of the exploding debris. Why does not even one bit of shrapnel hit him? (00:55:15)

About Time picture

Plot hole: They aren't able to travel before the birth of their children or their children become different. Despite that, he visits his father one last time before their third child is born. His Dad and he then travel back to when he was a kid, which would have changed his first 2 kids.

The Outsiders picture

Plot hole: The pictures used in the newspaper article regarding the fire are obviously taken after Ponyboy and Johnny ran away since Pony's hair is blond and Johnny's is short (their hair was cut and dyed after they ran, ruling out the photos being old school photos), yet Johnny's face is free of burns. This would mean the pictures were taken while they were hiding in the church, which would be impossible.

3,000 Miles to Graceland picture

Plot hole: How could the police miss finding Cybil in the trunk of Michael Zane's car when it was in an impound lot? They would have definitely searched the car if he was found in violation of a federal offence (for carrying the weapons). Even if they didn't do a search, they would certainly have heard the sounds that Cybil would have made from being locked in the trunk.

Indecent Proposal picture

Plot hole: At the end of the film Woody shows what a nice chap he is by spending the 'tainted' million dollars at a charity auction. He's just made his problems much worse - he paid his solicitor a large fee to arrange the deal, so he hasn't got a million in the bank. That cheque is going to bounce so fast it will crack the plaster on the roof of the bank, and bouncing a million dollar cheque is a serious criminal offence in the US. (There is no way enough interest could have built up to cover the difference, either).

The Shawshank Redemption picture

Plot hole: When the warden comes into the cell the morning after the escape, the poster covering the hole is fastened down on all four corners - impossible to do after squeezing into that small hole. [On the DVD commentary, the director confirms that this was a movie "cheat".] (01:49:05)

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Suggested correction: It's a shame the director surrendered, but for someone as smart as Andy, this is the smallest of problems. He could've put weights on the bottom of the poster, or used magnets he embedded in the walls together with iron glued to the poster, or enough washers in the bottom to essentially do both.

dizzyd

That's a load of rubbish. Embedding magnets in the wall? Really.

A Demon Premium member

If he can make a six foot escape tunnel, he can scrape out several small holes around the poster's edge, and insert the aforementioned magnets, glued in however he can manage (ie tape, chewing gum).

dizzyd
How to Train Your Dragon picture

Plot hole: When Astrid gets on Toothless for the first time, Toothless takes off uncontrollably and tries to scare her. Hiccup seems to have no control over him at this time. How is that so if with the new tail fin, Toothless cannot fly without Hiccup's precise control of the tail fin? That whole sequence would have fallen apart. This mistake was even admitted to on the DVD Commentary. (00:53:35)

Quantom X Premium member
The Fly picture

Plot hole: The whole problem with the teleporter occurs when fly DNA is mixed in with Seth Brundle's DNA, starting his transformation into the Brundlefly. Brundle is on a hiding to nothing from the word go, and the fly is irrelevant. Humans are a walking talking mass of foreign DNA - we are host to one trillion bacteria all of which has a complete compliment of DNA, as do various tiny mites that live in our hair follicles and all sorts of single cell organisms in our gut. If the transporter serves to mix the DNA of all living creatures which are in the transporter pod at the time Brundle would turn into a half-man, half-bacteria. Incidentally, DNA from a bacteria, an amoeba or a hair follicle mite would be just as 'compatible' with human DNA as that from an insect. It's quite a simple chemical, really.

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Suggested correction: Being as how the bacteria and mites and such were IN or ON Seth, the machine was able to organize those symbiotic relationships accordingly as teleporting one would teleport all. The fly was separate, not touching. The machine was not programmed to anticipate two separated entities and so combined them into one on the other side.

Phixius Premium member

We leave behind a vapour trail of bacteria and viruses (among other things) as we walk, in our breath and emanations from pores in our skin, and Brundle isn't trapping any in his clothes as he isn't wearing any. Brundle has an invisible cloud of DNA floating around him in that teleportation chamber and as far as the machine is concerned their DNA has exactly the same status as that of the fly.

Broadcast News picture

Plot hole: How could Jane not be aware that Tom had only used one camera for the date rape interview, recording his fake tears later? That's the way things are done on television news shows and as an experienced, hard-bitten television producer she could not possibly be unaware of that. The reporter always records his or her reaction shots (called 'noddies') after the interviewee has left. Shooting with two cameras would involve two crews, two lighting rigs, a vision switcher and so on and so on and a straightforward interview simply would not justify such a complex and expensive set up.

PEDAUNT
The Thomas Crown Affair picture

Plot hole: When Renee Russo was reviewing the tape showing the room with the painting to see who stole the painting, and the tape was blank because the heat generated from the suitcase hidden under the bench, why didn't she just back up the tape completely to see who put the suitcase there in the first place? (00:28:30)

Changing Lanes picture

Plot hole: When Ben Affleck is meeting with the man who changes Samuel Jackson's credit record, the man remarks that Samuel Jackson should not have told Ben Affleck that he was in insurance. Samuel Jackson never told Ben Affleck that he was in insurance.

Twister picture

Plot hole: Throughout the entire movie, barns, houses, cars, 18-wheelers, etc. are demolished and lifted into the air like they were made of paper. And yet Jo and Bill pass through one tornado after another with nothing more than their hair getting messed up (a little.) You'd think just the debris flying into their faces at 100 miles an hour would be enough to give them a few injuries.

Krista
The Sum of All Fears picture

Plot hole: When the President of the United States attends a public gathering (such as the SuperBowl) the level of security is extremely high. So why wasn't Mason's delivery on the day of the game checked for explosive devices?

The Butterfly Effect picture

Plot hole: When Evan is in jail with the religious prisoner trying to get him to help him get his journals back he goes to the scene where he is drawing that homicidal picture in kindergarten, but he gets up and puts the spikes that holds documents through his hands, creating a stigmata-style scar. The religious guy in the cell with him is so amazed because of this he thinks Evan is a prophet and he decides to help him. If Evan had gone back in time and got those scars on his hands, he would have changed the original timeline and would have arrived in jail with those scars the whole time. Some people try to correct this using the "If I can create scars, then can I fix them?" statement Evan made to defend the mistake and suggest he can create instant scars but he was using the word "scars" to refer to the negative events; not literal scars on his body. The scar he got when he burned himself in the past didn’t magically appear on him the moment he returned from the past; it became part of a new, slightly altered timeline (just like the scars on his hands should have been) and it let him know he can change history.

Courage Under Fire picture

Plot hole: Sgt Monfriez would have never been on a medevac helicopter with an automatic weapon. I served several years in U.S Army Medical units and they are allowed defensive weaponry only, medical units are not ever issued automatic weapons period. The plot says the Monfriez is from another unit and is asked to accompany the medevac but that would never happen; it is against the law of land warfare to put an automatic weapon on any type of ambulance vehicle.

The Interpreter picture

Plot hole: Toward the end of the movie, it is revealed that Silvia spent the night in the secure room where the Matabo President was taken after the assassination attempt so that she could be alone with him and threaten to kill him. With the U.N. and Secret Service on alert for an assassination attempt, wouldn't they have swept the secure room right before the Matabo President arrived that day? In addition, Silvia would have had to use her access card to get in that area of the building, so there would be a record of her being in the building but not at her station. Wouldn't that raise some suspicion long before Tobin figures it out?

Allyson Premium member
The Prestige picture

Plot hole: Julia dies in the underwater escape trick tank because the axe couldn't get her out in time. However, if she was able to open the lid from inside the tank, get up, over, and down, then close the lid (all quickly, silently, and without assistance) when the trick goes properly, then there is no reason that the four men standing around could not have simply lifted the lid, either acting a key in the fake padlock to preserve the trick, or using a key if it's real. At this point she could have gotten her head above water and draped her hands over the side of the tank to stay up. That done, the crisis is over, and she must only wait to calm down enough to get herself down, or be assisted. Cutter built the tank, so he knew how strong the glass was. The only explanation for using the axe was to allow Julia's death, thus advancing the plot.

Phixius Premium member
Capricorn One picture

Plot hole: The "death" of the three astronauts and the requirement to then fake the whole scenario of the failed mission was obviously unplanned - it came about because of an unexpected computer glitch which reported that they had burned up on reentry, causing a mad scramble to cover up the fake mission and kill the astronauts. Obviously it was planned to have the astronauts "return" to Earth as heroes after their supposed trip to Mars, maintaining their deception (under threat if necessary) for the rest of their lives. One problem. Every scientist on earth would be champing at the bit to get their hands on a sample of Martian rock. Samples would be worth billions, worth far more than Moon rocks are worth today. How was NASA going to explain they didn't have any? They could not possibly fake the rocks - Martian soil and rocks would have a number of identifiable characteristics that a smart first year college student could identify. NASA have painted themselves into a corner and that is not something they would have failed to realise well in advance.

PEDAUNT

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