Common movie and TV mistakes - page 6

This is a list of mistakes, things done wrong, etc. that happen so frequently onscreen we barely notice any more. 'Movie logic', stupid behaviours, and everything related.

Factual error: When the character holding a gun keeps cocking the slide whenever they are about to get into trouble. Once a weapon is cocked, it's loaded. Every other time the slide, or cocking handle is manipulated, the weapon will extract a round from the chamber and draw a new round from the magazine. Whenever this happens in movies or shows, the weapon never extracts the round in the chamber.

Deliberate mistake: How many times have we seen cars and trucks drive through snow, dirt and mud, only to arrive at their destination perfectly clean.

Mike Lynch

Revealing mistake: "Snowflakes" will stay on a person's coat/shoulders and top of head plus will not melt when the person goes indoors; it might "roll off."


Factual error: Women didn't start routinely shaving their legs until the 1920s, but in films and TVs shows set before then, women's legs are always hair free.

Mike Lynch

Plot hole: Minuscule towns where you'd expect even a robbery at the local diner would be big news and horrify the local community for months, somehow end up having a crime rate worse than a Mad Max dystopia. Examples; Cabot Cove, Maine (where Jessica Fletcher lives), or the "This is the police" videogame series, where a small town in the mountains ends up having in just a couple months hostage situations, bomb threats, several murders, armed robberies and about half a dozen of violent crimes every day.

Sammo Premium member

Deliberate mistake: Trains should stop when the engineer is killed or otherwise incapacitated because of a switch known as a "Dead man's" which is used in these events to stop the train. This mistake is often done purposely to keep the action going and for plot purposes. This is especially common in action films.


Deliberate mistake: Modern cars crashing without airbags going off. Probably a deliberate mistake for safety (trained stunt drivers can create the scene safely with the airbags removed) and visibility (deflated airbags would obscure the actors and getting past them would slow down the action).

Factual error: In movies where people are fighting with bows and arrows, whenever someone gets hit by an arrow, they flinch in pain and die on the spot. In most cases, the arrow injury is insufficient to cause a person's immediate death. Or they may die from the arrow wound, but only after they bleed to death, which takes time.

Mike Lynch

Other mistake: Primitive people or people cut off from civilization that still have brilliantly white and perfectly straight teeth.


Continuity mistake: In episodic television shows, the heroes can be shot, stabbed, have broken bones, etc., but these vicious scars and injuries are never carried forward into the following episodes - the heroes are unscathed.


Deliberate mistake: Especially in action movies and westerns, people in gun scenes often go through way more ammo in their weapons than possible and never reload. Especially the heroes.

Quantom X Premium member

Character mistake: When someone gets shot and the first thing people try to do is remove the bullet, often with a knife and no anesthetic.


Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: This commonly happens but this is not a mistake. What is wrong with removing the bullet with a knife and no anesthetic. Many times the characters don't have access to a medical facility with all the accoutrements to remove a bullet or don't want to go to a hospital where bullet wounds are reported to law enforcement.


It seems my original entry was edited to make it more brief. But in real life, bullets are not commonly removed because there's no need. The bullet is not the concern, it's the hole the bullet caused that's the concern. They (and more specific to what I was trying to suggest, they as in medical experts) are increasing the risk factors for no viable reason and are never addressing the main cause for concern. And the point of not using anesthetic is they are increasing the risk factors even more for an already pointless surgery.


Character mistake: People who carry a loaded pistol, or keep a loaded pistol next to them, that never have a round in the chamber, just so the character can cock it right before a shootout. Or when a round is suppose to be in the chamber and the person cocks the gun anyways and no round is ejected.


Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: On the first point, this is not a mistake. Proper gun handing would dictate that you don't have a round in the chamber until you are going to use the gun. On your second point, you are assuming too much that there is a round in the chamber.


Proper gun handling would be to use the safety. It's ridiculous for a character to keep an unchambered gun that they're planning on using, or think they might use. On the second point, I'm not assuming anything. I'm saying when it's suppose to be chambered because we saw it chambered, or it was fired and a round was chambered, etc. I didn't say when it's assumed to be chambered.


You are right that it would be ridiculous for a character to keep an unchambered gun they are planning on using, but that is not my point. My point is that proper gun safety would be to not normally keep a round in the chamber unless you were going to use it. Cocking the gun shows the audience he intends on using it. Before that, you didn't know his intent. On the second point, OK, you provided additional clarification.


Factual error: Every time somebody pulls out a Glock handgun a click can be heard. Glocks are striker fired, they have no external safeties that can be manipulated. Glock did make a version with a flip up/down safety for the military procurement trials but Glock lost the bid, and commercially made Glock's have no external safeties which would make a clicking sound.

Factual error: Military uniforms are often wrong. When it comes to ribbons, medals, rank, or branch; very few TV shows/movies have no uniform mistakes. Hiring a military advisor from the branch in question would alleviate all of these issues. And no, it's not illegal for Hollywood to portray uniforms correctly.

Audio problem: When someone is holding a gun, you often hear the sound of a hammer being pulled to the rear and locked even when the gun (usually a Glock) doesn't have a hammer to pull.

Factual error: The hugely exaggerated amount of flame and damage produced by military weapons such as a hand grenade. They make a loud boom, a bit of a flash and a small stain of black smoke. No mammoth explosion, that's for sure.


Other mistake: People gaining access to a computer system they've never seen or used before, but manage to figure out exactly how to do the thing they need to do, often in a very limited timeframe. No clicking around trying to find the right area or the right command.

Jon Sandys Premium member

Factual error: An especially stupid but common blunder in film and TV over the decades involves a character picking up a random object from nearby and bashing a heavy padlock and steel chain a few times until the lock and chain break and fall away. Of course, steel chain and heavy padlocks are designed to withstand tons of stress that a human being couldn't possibly exert through striking alone.

Charles Austin Miller

Factual error: When someone is burying a dead body, one person alone digs a hole big enough to bury a fully grown adult with a garden spade usually in about five minutes. There is also no sign of the earth that has been displaced by the body.

eric 64

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