Red Dawn

Factual error: The Russians use a beeping "radio direction finder" to find the partisans by detecting a bug swallowed by the Mayor's son. In closeups the "direction finder" is seen to be an impedance meter (used for measuring AC resistance) - it's labeled "X=(down arrow) x (up arrow)(omega)". X is the standard abbreviation for impedance, omega means "ohms" (the unit of impedance/resistance), so the label says "impedance is lower dial times upper dial, in ohms". There is a piece of spiral twisted wire across the terminals of the impedance meter which would be useless for radio direction finding.

01:19:15

Red Dawn mistake picture

Factual error: When the Russian tank rolls up to the two gas pumps, the crew have a choice of regular gasoline (as indicated on the pump), or Good Gulf (a premium gasoline). And in fact one of the tankers tells the attendant, "Gasoline." The trouble is, all Soviet tanks, from the T-34 up through the T-80, have diesel engines for safety reasons.

00:46:55

Red Dawn mistake picture

Factual error: In the opening scene of the movie, the Soviet paratroopers are seen wearing smooth, black, leather parachute helmets. But Soviet Paratroopers have always worn tan, cloth parachute helmets with ridges that resembled tanker helmets.

00:05:00

Factual error: When the Soviet airborne troops first drop into Calumet in the first few scenes of the movie they are using US Army issue parachutes - MC1-1B.

00:04:45

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Mistakes

When Col. Tanner is on top of the Russian tank, he is firing his pistol into it. After a few shots, you can see that the slide on his gun locks back, showing that the gun is empty. Tanner does not reload, but is none the less able to keep shooting afterwards.

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Trivia

According to the Guinness Book of World Records at the time, this film held the record for being the most violent movie ever made, with scenes of violence every five minutes.

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