Best history movie factual errors of all time

Red Tails picture

Factual error: Me 262's were armed with 30 mm cannon in the nose, a round penetrating a canopy would leave a hole much larger than was depicted, and being high-explosive, once it detonated inside the cockpit, the pilot was toast. One of the red tails had a number of holes in his canopy.

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goofyfoot
Dunkirk picture

Factual error: In the scene towards the start of the film in Weymouth harbour, you can see the huge building which is Weymouth Pavilion, which was built in 1954, after the original 1909 building burnt down.

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freedom2006
Enemy at the Gates picture

Factual error: When the map of the German advance is shown, Switzerland is shown to be taken over. Switzerland was never invaded by the Germans.

00:05:10

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Suggested correction: It doesn't show German advances. It shows the German influence over Europe, symbolizing it covers all of Europe and then expanded towards the East. Italy was never conquered by the Germans either yet it was part of the axis and is shown being covered by black. Switzerland, though neutral, was fully surrounded by the Axis and their influence played heavily upon the country. Its a very crude simulation.

lionhead

Suggested correction: It does not show the German advancement in true historical order, but more like a red shadow that expands across Europe in a steady pace. And just as the camera starts zooming in on Stalingrad, you can see a small sliver of red starting to spread on the south-eastern coast of Norway.

dizzyd
The Social Network picture

Factual error: When Mark types email addresses in to tell people about facemash, he writes to several people @harvard.edu. At the time the movie takes place, undergraduate email addresses were all of the form [email protected] Furthermore, the network brought down by facemash would have been referred to as the FAS network. (FAS stands for Faculty of Arts and Sciences; the eponymous network covered all buildings within the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.).

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The Post picture

Factual error: Robert McNamara is wearing a multi colored Polo shirt talking to Mrs. Graham in 1971. The Ralph Lauren Company did not make the shirts until 1972.

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Gallipoli picture

Factual error: Mel Gibson sits around the campfire at the railway camp with the lads, reading newspaper reports of the April 25, 1915 landing at Gallipoli. The 3rd Light Horse Brigade (including the 10th Light Horse Regiment from Western Australia) landed at Gallipoli on 20 May 1915. This would have given him less than 3 weeks to enlist, train, travel to Egypt by ship and land on the Peninsula. A bit of a stretch. In reality, the 10 Light Horse regiment was raised in October 1914, with the 1st-3rd reinforcements departing Fremantle February 19-22, 1915.

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The Longest Day picture

Factual error: The ribbon of Richard Burton's Distinguished Flying Cross is on upside down. The Air Force Cross following it is the right way up. The stripes on both should point the same way, as they do on the uniform of his colleague in the mess. Nobody would be allowed to get away with a mistake like this - another officer or senior NCO would soon point it out. In addition, as a long-service veteran (his colleague says he served in the Battle of Britain) he should be wearing the ribbon of the 1939-1944 Star (as it was then), which was issued to all qualified personnel from 1943.

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Necrothesp

8

Glory (1989)

Glory picture

Factual error: In the assault on Fort Wagner, the regiment attacks the fort from the wrong side. In reality, the troops attacked from the south.

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Anna and the King picture

Factual error: The movie is set in the 1860s. During a performance for English guests, Anna has the King's children perform "Bicycle Built For Two". That song, otherwise known as "Daisy Belle" was written by Harry Dacre in 1892.

00:57:50

Three Kings picture

Factual error: It is said in the film that Ice Cube's character works in an airport in Detroit. When the scene shows Ice Cube at work as a baggage handler, there are mountains in the background. There are no mountains in the Detroit area.

00:14:10

Sink the Bismarck picture

Factual error: Here's a big historical mistake. The character of German Admiral L├╝tjens is depicted overall in this film as a wild-eyed Nazi fanatic. In real life, he was distinctly anti-Nazi, vehemently protested the anti-Semitic actions of Hitler's regime, and was himself subject to intense Nazi scrutiny as he was a quarter Jewish and his wife was half Jewish. He was one of many German naval officers who fought only for their country, not Hitler.

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12

Midway (1976)

Midway picture

Factual error: American carriers did not have angled decks until after W.W.II.

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13

Troy (2004)

Troy picture

Factual error: When the Trojans flee inside the walls at the arrival of the Greeks, you can see some llamas. Llamas were only known in Latin America and not in ancient Troy.

02:20:10

Kingdom of Heaven picture

Factual error: The crescent as emblem on Saracen pennants is anachronistic as it appeared on Islamic military flags no sooner than the 15th century A.D.

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Hollywoodland picture

Factual error: Louis Simo gives his son an Etch-A-Sketch while taking him to school, and later when Louis stops by to see his son at his ex-wife's house, his son is playing with the Etch-A-Sketch in his bedroom. Both incidents take place in the summer of 1959. George Reeves died June 16, 1959, hence the investigation. The first Etch-A-Sketch toys were produced on July 12, 1960 and Ohio Art launched the toy in the United States in time for the 1960 holiday season.

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ezyrydr2000rs
Darkest Hour picture

Factual error: The underground station shown is not St. James Park, which would be 1 stop east on the District line. St. James Park has green and yellow tiles on the wall indicating District and Circle lines. The platform in the film has black and brown tiles, indicating Northern and Bakerloo lines, neither of which serve St. James Park.

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Crusoe
Wyatt Earp picture

Factual error: When Wyatt (Kevin Costner) becomes the sheriff/deputy/policeman of Wichita, Kansas, you can plainly see mountains in the background - there aren't any around there.

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Quiz Show picture

Factual error: There is a theater showing 'La Dolce Vita.' That movie came out in 1960, but this film takes place in 1957 or 58 (since there is a reference to new 1958 model car).

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Elizabeth picture

Factual error: Sir Francis Walsingham was only a year older than Elizabeth.

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Seabiscuit picture

Factual error: In the shot of the infield at the Saratoga racetrack several Canada geese are shown landing. However, the calls inserted on the soundtrack are the quacks of mallard ducks not the honks of Canada geese.

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The Madness of King George picture

Factual error: In the opening shot of the film, a big oak door opens - carved in it is the date 1862 - 42 years after George III died.

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K-19: The Widowmaker picture

Factual error: Many shots of the submarine in drydock show Halifax, Nova Scotia's MacKay and MacDonald bridges in the background.

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King Arthur picture

Factual error: I normally wouldn't bother with this sort of nitpicking, but this film specifically claims to be historically researched - and it's full of historical blunders. For a start, the film is set as the Empire withdraws its last troops from Britain - which was in 407 AD. Now Artorius Castus was a real Roman officer who really did command Sarmatian foederati at Hadrian's Wall, but he died around 200 AD. Cerdic was a real Saxon warlord who did go raiding the Britons with his son Cynric, but he did this in the early 500s. Pelagius really was tried for heresy, but he was acquitted and died of old age; the trial was a decade after this setting, and in the fifth century you couldn't be executed for heresy anyway. Also in the fifth century the Pope had no authority over Imperial troops. I could go on and on but that will do for now.

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Cromwell picture

Factual error: In the scene where the king attempts to seize the five members from Parliament, Cromwell makes a dramatic refusal to leave and proposes various "Laws" to prevent his arrest. Cromwell was not one of the five members whom the King tried to arrest and no law can come into force until it had been signed by the reigning Monarch anyway.

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Miracle picture

Factual error: There indeed was a moment in the game (vs. USSR) where Jim Craig was shaken up, but contrary to what's shown in the movie, the hit did not happen as the Soviets scored a goal. Furthermore, if a goalie is that flagrantly knocked down and out so that a teammate can get a shot off, it should be a two-minute penalty for "goaltender interference" and the goal disallowed.

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Matty Blast
Chariots of Fire picture

Factual error: Another flag gaffe: The Canadian flag in the 1920s was either the red ensign or the Union Jack. The Maple Leaf only became the national flag in 1965.

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27

JFK (1991)

JFK picture

Factual error: In the scene where there is a train passing, the cars are marked "Burlington Northern." There was NO Burlington Northern until 1970, 7 years AFTER the shooting.

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Cleopatra picture

Factual error: The Forum shown in that film is smaller than in real life. Also, Cleopatra is shown passing through the Arc of Contantine, a monument that was built centuries after her death.

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29

61* (2001)

61* picture

Factual error: The third member of the Yankees with a prominent role in the film is Bob Cerv (roommate of Mickey & Roger). In the film, he is with the team from Opening Day. However, Cerv was actually acquired by the Yankees in May of that year.

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Apollo 13 picture

Factual error: When Lovell's daughter is complaining that the Beatles have broken up, she slams the album Let It Be into her rack. The scene takes place on the day of the initial explosion aboard Apollo 13, April 13 1970 - immediately prior to the Lovell family attending the screening of a television broadcast from the spacecraft. Let It Be was not released as an album until May 9th, 1970.

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