Raiders of the Lost Ark

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

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.

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

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.


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)


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)


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)


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)

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

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)


Continuity mistake: When Indy is chasing after the truck on horseback, he jumps off the horse and onto the truck, as he does this the horse begins to slow down and fall behind, but as Indy throws the German soldier in the passenger seat out of the truck the horse has disappeared, it could not have been hidden from view behind the truck, because the horse's shadow would have been visible. (01:23:30)


Revealing mistake: While Indy and Marion are in the Well of Souls, and they encounter the snakes, Indy falls to the ground only to be confronted by a hissing Cobra rearing its head. Look carefully and you'll see the snake's reflection on the safety glass between it and Indy. Briefly you can also see the torch's reflection while he's waving it around. You can also see Marion's reflection when she falls in later on and is face to face with the cobra. [This has been corrected in the new DVD set. You can only see it if you have the original VHS. I think it's visible in the "making of" on the DVD as well.]

More mistakes in Raiders of the Lost Ark

Sallah: Indy, why does the floor move?
Indiana: Give me your torch. [He drops it in and sees why.] Snakes. Why'd it have to be snakes?
Sallah: Asps. Very dangerous. You go first.

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

Trivia: In the Well of Souls, you can see hieroglyphics of C3PO and R2D2 on the wall.

More trivia for Raiders of the Lost Ark

Question: Considering how powerful and dangerous the Ark is, why would Indy hand it over to the United States government, instead of putting it back where it was found and to ensure it's never located, lie to them and say him or the Nazis never found it?

Answer: Indy and Marcus Brody believed that the Ark needed to be studied. They certainly didn't want to put it back where it was found. They believed that the U.S. government would find the best archaeologists, researchers, and scientists in the world to study the Ark. They are both upset that instead, the government has decided to simply lock the Ark away. This is why Indy says "Fools. They don't know what they've got there." as he is leaving the building.


Answer: To add to the previous answer, there is no way that the ark could have been secretly returned to where it was found and conveniently forgotten. Too many people already knew of its existence and location. It would only be a matter of time before someone more sinister would retrieve it. Rightfully, it belonged to the Egyptian government and should have been turned over to them.

raywest Premium member

More questions & answers from Raiders of the Lost Ark

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