Saving Private Ryan

Corrected entry: When Upham takes several German prisoners, he shoots Steamboat Willie. We see Upham's face and gun as he shoots, we hear Steamboat Willie's body fall, then the camera turns back to the German soldiers - and Steamboat Willie's body is gone. (02:34:00)

Uri Raz

Correction: The scenes after Upham shoots Steamboat Willie never shows Willie's body on the ground in the first place, so it could not have disappeared. Also, the blow of the rifle bullet hitting Willie would have knocked him back and out of the scene, and rolling/falling into one of the many shell craters dominating the scene.


Corrected entry: During the Omaha Beach scene, the radio man lying next to Tom Hanks suffers a massive wound to his face, killing him. But there is no blood or gore at all, just a hole in his face. It is impossible to sustain this type of injury and have no blood present.

Correction: The wound is immediately cauterized from the heat. Therefore, no bleeding. You notice the hole in the face smoking, so he was probably killed by a grenade or shell from a mortar.


Corrected entry: In the German version the Americans are translated, so they speak German... but the Germans also speak German, yet they don't understand each other.


Correction: This is not a mistake, but an extremely common technique used to make viewing the film easier for speakers of a particular language and avoid the need for extensive subtitles. German viewers are expected to take it as a given that the American characters are actually speaking English to one another and that Upham is the only character that can actually speak and understand fluent German.


Makes me wonder how they explain "fubar" though.


I'm always curious how slang terms that are that specific are translated into other languages. Take it to the forums and see if anyone who speaks German can watch that version. I'd be curious to see the answer myself.


Corrected entry: When Captain Miller tells Jackson he wants him to be up in the bell tower you can see a tree in the background, complete with green leaves. With all those explosions around which destroyed all the buildings, any tree there would have got burnt, or at least all their leaves would have been blown off by the explosions. (01:54:00)

Correction: An explosion would sooner fell the tree than blow off the leaves, that's why a storm would fell a tree, because the leaves won't come off until autumn. That tree just got lucky.


Corrected entry: When Caparzo is shot by the sniper in the church the shot hits him in the front of his chest/lung, indicating the church is in front of them, but when Jackson sees the church the sniper is stationed in, it's behind them.


Correction: No, the shot hits him in his back and goes through his body, you see it exiting out his chest. He had his back to the church, facing the rest of the squad, when he is hit. There is no error in this scene.


Corrected entry: In the scene where the ATP is ambushed by the two groups of Americans we see Cpt. Miller take their right flank and kill three Germans trying to run for it. But watch as he shoots. The second he stops shooting an explosion goes off in the background 20 yards away. This can't happen with the gun he's firing (Thompson) because it doesn't shoot explosive rounds. In addition to the shooting, a German messed up by getting shot way after Cpt. Miller stopped shooting.

Correction: The explosion is caused by a bazooka in Ryan's group, not Miller's Thompson.

Correction: One of the airborne soldiers shot the 3rd German.

Steve Kozak

Corrected entry: When Mellish's gun gets jammed he doesn't fix his gun or do anything to it. When the Germans kill the Airborne soldier through the wall, they try to enter the room and Mellish shoots another shot, killing the first German.

Correction: When Henderson takes up his position with his Thompson you can hear an M1 Garand cycle. He cleared his jam off camera.

Steve Kozak

Corrected entry: After the taking of the beaches, and Miller returns for revised orders, the fleet in the background appears/disappears.

Correction: Watched the scene three times. There is no evidence of ships in the bay behind the actors.

Corrected entry: When Miller, and Ryan are in the ditch, Ryan states he's out of ammo, but in the next scene, he fires off another round.

Correction: Ryan is not including the rounds already in the gun. Basically telling Miller, "This is it!"

Damian Torres

Corrected entry: In the scene towards the end where Corporal Upham is translating the French song 'Tu es partout', he translates correctly but his translation does match the song. He says everything prematurely, before it's actually said in the song.

Correction: Upham appears to know the song quite well so it's not surprising that he translates the lines to come instead of the lines that came. That's what I do when I translate Swedish songs into English to a listener.

Corrected entry: As the Rangers move out with the clutzy interpreter Upham, the veterans chastise him for saluting Capt. Miller, lest they draw the attention of German snipers to their leader. At that moment and throughout the film, "Capt. Miller" is wearing a helmet with his twin captain's bars painted in plain sight on the front, where no self-respecting sniper could possibly miss them. (00:44:00)

Correction: Whatever Capt. Miller did or did not do with his uniform, it was still unwise to salute him. A salute is much easier to spot than an inch-high insignia.

Bob Blumenfeld

Corrected entry: Contrary to what happens in the movie, commanders wouldn't have sent an army unit into enemy territory to save a single soldier. Some cities were still occupied, and heavily guarded by German military forces at the time in which the movie takes place, and commanders would have thought it would be too risky to send an army unit into enemy territory to save a single soldier. Instead, they would have had put the word out among troops to try to find private Ryan as they found each other after the air-drop out errors, and advanced inland.

Correction: This is not meant to be a true story based on true events. Only it's set around the events of D-Day and after. This is a fictional idea made into a story for heroics and therefore isn't a factual error. Artistic licences are taken into situations like this all the time in movies. If this was meant to be based on a true story, then this would be a factual error, but it's fantasy.

Quantom X

Not only would commanders not have sent into a unit into enemy territory to save one soldier, I don't believe it would make sense to send such a mission given the manpower, and resources that would be needed for such a mission.

It is a fantasy based around this premise, in a world where this would happen. Therefore, given that this movie revolves around this, it is not a mistake.

Quantom X

This can be a factual error whether the movie is based on a true story or not. There are tons of fantasy films with factual errors.

The main thing is that it's a story and a movie, not a documentary. You are supposed to go with the drama. It is not a mistake if they do it intentionally (may be categorized into a "deliberate mistake" though). It is a fine line, but in this movie it's pretty obvious.


Corrected entry: When they first enter the field hospital, look at the side of the glider. By the door, there is no dead body. When they come back, there is a body resting against the glider. Did a wounded man get up to die next to the glider? (01:11:10)

Correction: It's a different door. Note the pilot section, and the tree coverage.


Corrected entry: In Newville when Caparzo is taking the girl he gives her his dog tags. When he dies, Capt. Miller takes his dog tags from his neck. He never got them back from the little girl.


Correction: Caparzo gives the Little girl rosary beads he had around his neck, not his dog tags.

Corrected entry: In Neuville just after Miller's group joined the other scattered soldiers, they try to get to the other side of the city. One of them tears down a wall with Germans hiding in the building. After screaming at each other, the Germans all get shot by others from above. Some moments after this shootout, you hear this very distinctive M1 Garand "pling" sound. This sound only is to be heard after the last shot has been fired and the clip is ejected automatically. Bang - pling. But in this scene there is no shot. If you unload manually, the pling will not sound.

Correction: If the only round left is in the chamber, and you pull the operating rod back, the round in the chamber is ejected as well as the empty clip, making the ping noise. No shots necessary.

Steve Kozak

Corrected entry: In the scene in the Pentagon between several officers and General Marshall, when the camera pans over Marshall's left shoulder towards the officers, you can see that the colonel, who was missing his left arm in earlier scenes, has it again; it's missing again in the next shot. It may be just that his sleeve's rolled down in the middle shot, but that's still an error. (00:34:00)

Correction: The officer lost his right arm. That sleeve of his jacket is hanging empty as the officers follow Gen. Marshall across the room. At the point where the mistake is supposed to happen the camera shoots an angle from behind Gen. Marshall left shoulder upon the one-armed officer. You see a bit of his sleeve, 6-8 inches. There is no indication it is filled or has changed from previous shot. You just do not see all of it.

Corrected entry: In the Ryan farmhouse scene, the camera pans across the room. You see a telephone hanging on the wall. That type of phone did not appear until at least the 1950s.

Correction: That is a Western Electric model #354 telephone, released in 1937, and remained popular for many years. That telephone is completely appropriate considering the era.

Correction: If you are referencing the scene with the Germans burning after the Molotov cocktail attack, you see an American on the ground shooting a burning German soldier. Jackson makes no effort to cycle the bolt on his rifle, therefore he didn't shoot. The American on the ground made the shot.

Steve Kozak

Corrected entry: At the beginning of the film, during the beach invasion and right after Miller comes out of his first little episode, watch behind the soldier who yells, "What the hell do we do now, sir?" When the camera is pointing at Miller, the same patch of water explodes three times.

Correction: The Germans dropped a lot of shells on Omaha beach that day. Everything was probably hit more than once.

Corrected entry: On D-Day itself only TWO German fighters actually attacked the beaches of Normandy (in total contradiction to Hitler's orders, who still thought of it as being a feint attack). The pilots were the aces Josef "Pips" Priller and Heinz Wodarczyk.

Correction: In what way is this trivia relating to the film? If the film shows more fighters, then it's a mistake, not trivia, if the film only shows one, then the other is presumably off camera, if the film shows the accurate two, then you're just pointing what's seen on screen (which isn't good trivia) and the background information isn't particularly film-relevant. Trivia is supposed to be about the film - while historical facts are interesting, thousands could be added about any historically set film. As such, they cannot be accepted as valid trivia.


Continuity mistake: When they go to find Private Ryan there are eight of them, when they go to a French town and Caparzo picks up the little girl and he gets killed there are seven, right? Wrong. A few scenes later, the camera shows all eight of them marching on to the next town, only in a far away camera shot so it's hard to see. (01:23:11)

More mistakes in Saving Private Ryan

Private Jackson: What I mean by that, sir, is if you was to put me and this here sniper rifle anywhere up to and including one mile from Adolf Hitler... With a clean line of sight... Pack your bags, fellas. War's over. Amen.

More quotes from Saving Private Ryan
More trivia for Saving Private Ryan

Question: Jackson, the sniper of Miller's crew, states that if he was in a mile of Adolf Hitler, he would kill him. So, as they were driven to the beach, why didn't Jackson and other snipers try to pick off the the German guys who were firing the at the boats as the Americans left them?

Answer: Sniping needs stability - the movement of the waves under the boat would disrupt their aim so badly that they wouldn't have much hope of hitting anything.


Answer: Also, the machine gunners were under heavy cover. No one had a good shot at them.

Brian Katcher

More questions & answers from Saving Private Ryan

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