Raiders of the Lost Ark
Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Indy is trying to stop the truck that is supposedly carrying Marion in a basket, Indy shoots the driver as the truck heads towards a "dead end". The driver's foot hits the accelerator and the next shot opens up to a big open space where the truck tips over and explodes. The "dead end" has disappeared. (00:40:10)

1

Continuity mistake: The 'Top Secret' sign is put on the crate across vertically laid planks. A shot later the sign appears slanted across horizontally laid planks. Though it could be argued that there could be a second sign on the opposite side with horizontal planks, when the warehouse guy turns left to store the crate, we get a glimpse of the left side and it's not painted.

Sacha Premium member
3
Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: As Indy and Satipo enter the temple, When Indy says to Satipo "stop" he is holding the whip in his right hand, yet when Indy says "stay out of the light" the whip is in his left hand. (00:05:10)

Continuity mistake: When Indy is climbing into the map room, he throws the staff of Ra down the hole, yet when he climbs down, it's resting perfectly against the wall, as if someone had placed it there. (00:50:40)

Continuity mistake: In the scene where Sallah and Jones are in the Well of Souls where they are putting the sticks in the Ark to left it up. Notice Sallah stick, when he first puts it in, on the stick are no tassels. But when they both left at the same time Sallah same stick that he put in has tassels on it.

1

Continuity mistake: During the shooting at the bar, Marion covers her ears to muffle the sound, but a frame later they are around the wall in front.

Sacha Premium member
2

Continuity mistake: The fight scene in Marion's bar clearly shows Indy using an automatic pistol to shoot at the bad guys. You can see the slide lock open when he runs out of ammo. But when the scene switches he is holding a revolver. Then when the huge guy is strangling Indy and the German says, "Shoot them, shoot them both." Indy is once again holding an automatic.

Continuity mistake: As Indiana writes "Neolithic" on the blackboard in his classroom at the beginning of the movie, he stops and checks to see if he's spelling it right, then finishes writing it. Later shots of the board reveal the same word on the board, only either the handwriting is different or the actual structure of the word has changed.

redbaron2000
1
Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Indy is running through the streets of Cairo looking for the men carrying Marion in a basket, the sweat stain on the back of his shirt shrinks and grows. (00:40:35)

Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: During the scene where Indy and Marcus are with the Army intelligence agents, watch the agent who is wearing the light blue suit - at the moment when Marcus refers to a secret chamber, the agent in the blue suit has his right hand resting on top the chair that he is sitting on, but in the next shot when he replies "secret chamber" his right hand is now on his face. (00:17:55)

Will

Continuity mistake: When Indiana is climbing the statue to escape from the Well of Souls, the snake he encounters makes a rattling sound. However, the snake has no rattle and rattlesnakes are indigenous to the Americas. (01:13:40)

Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Indy is packing his suitcase to go to Nepal, he picks up a gun that is wrapped in a piece of cloth, he tosses the gun with his left hand into his right hand and begins to unwrap the gun from the cloth by raising his right hand, so that the gun will fall into his left hand, but the gun ends up falling into Indy's right hand instead of his left hand. (00:22:10)

Will
Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Indy is deciphering the object with the old man, there is a telescope behind them. It changes orientation between shots. (00:48:15)

Dr Wilson

Continuity mistake: In the map room, Indy pulls out a notebook and takes off the elastic band. The elastic goes flying away. Moments later he closes the book and the elastic is in his hand. Also, the elastic starts off being pink (the one that flies off), then blue (the one that he puts back onto the book) and ends as tan coloured when he puts the book back in his pocket.

Continuity mistake: While Indy is fighting the German who is driving the truck, you can see that the German has got blood on his left hand, but when he throws Indy through the windscreen his left hand is clean and there is no blood on it. (01:27:10)

Will

Continuity mistake: When Indy is in the map room, he blows sand away from a hole and a bunch of hieroglyphics, but in the next shot, there's sand scattered all over the stone he just finished clearing away. (00:52:10)

Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Indy goes through the windscreen in the scene where he is fighting the balding blonde German, the stunt double playing the German has a full head of brown hair. (01:27:10)

Continuity mistake: During the middle of the bar fight scene, Indy was slammed on the counter and whispered to the girl, "Whisky". In the next shot she grabbed the bottle and handed it to Jones. The very next shot she hands him the bottle again. It happens very quick. Watch carefully. (00:32:05)

Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: There's a shot of the plane at the beginning, taken from the front, looking down the length of the body, where there's no writing on the side. (00:11:45)

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Suggested correction: On a good quality frame the number is visible quite clear. Not visible on a poor resolution frame.

Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Belloq grabs the machine gun, his left hand is on the trigger and his right hand on the gun cartridge as he turns round with his back to the camera, but in the next shot, his right hand is on the trigger and his left hand on the cartridge but in the next shot, his hands have changed position once more, this time left hand on the trigger and right hand on the cartridge. (01:42:55)

Will
Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Visible crew/equipment: After Marion supposedly dies in the truck explosion and Indy is drinking outside at the bar, watch to the left of him. You can see a man wearing a modern t-shirt and jeans walking through the crowd. (00:42:20)

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Suggested correction: This is probably the most famous non-mistake of all time. Denim jeans date from 1871. They were first sold by Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss in 1873 and the design hasn't changed much since then! Plain white cotton T-shirts date from 1898 and were first issued by the US Navy to their sailors in 1913. The design caught on immediately and they flew off the shelves. In short, there is nothing at all unusual about a man wearing jeans and a T-shirt in the late thirties.

He's the only person wearing that outfit in Cairo. Every single other person is wearing "traditional" clothing. He's clearly not meant to be in shot.

He could have been one of the few American tourists in the area.

Noman Premium member

"There is nothing at all unusual about a man wearing jeans and a T-shirt in the late thirties." However there is a good deal unusual about a caucasian man in jeans and a tshirt in cairo in the 1930s. He is entirely out of place.

Unusual does not mean impossible, and in order for him being there to be a mistake it has to be impossible. It isn't. Unlikely is not impossible. This is not a mistake.

That's not how it works. Say someone is wearing a jacket, is off screen for 4 seconds, then cuts back and the jacket is gone. It's technically possible they ripped it off themselves in 4 seconds on a whim, but that's not actually feasible. There's one solitary man in jeans and a T-shirt in Cairo in the 30s, when every single other person on-screen is wearing different clothing. The most likely explanation is it's a screwup.

More mistakes in Raiders of the Lost Ark

Belloq: How odd that it should end this way for us after so many stimulating encounters. I almost regret it. Where shall I find a new adversary so close to my own level?
Indiana: Try the local sewer.

More quotes from Raiders of the Lost Ark
Raiders of the Lost Ark mistake picture

Trivia: There's a Star Wars reference to Obi-Wan and C-3PO on the plane rescuing Indy at the start - it has the registration OB-CPO.

More trivia for Raiders of the Lost Ark

Question: After the scene where Indy first goes onto the German U-boat, he runs around apparently looking for something, then the scene changes to the inside of the sub where you can hear that the order has been given to dive. Was there an actual scene cut out of the film where Indy lashes himself to the periscope? (When Raiders first came out in Aus, I vividly remember seeing it with this scene.)

Answer: The scene you describe was indeed filmed. It was cut out of the US release of the film although I cannot speak for the Australian version. The scene also appears in the Marvel Comics adaptation. http://www.theraider.net/films/raiders/deleted_scenes.php has a list of this and the other deleted scenes.

Phil C.
More questions & answers from Raiders of the Lost Ark

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