Ben-Hur
Ben-Hur mistake picture

Continuity mistake: During the race, dolphin sculptures are tipped down to count the laps. Right after the third dolphin is lowered, there's a shot from below a horse and one can see that the dolphin is raised again. (02:46:55)

Sacha

Ben-Hur mistake picture

Continuity mistake: During the chariot race, Judah's chariot has a decorative front metal rail, and in some shots there is a plump curved cushion attached to the rail, on its inner side. It repeatedly disappears and reappears throughout the scene.

Super Grover

Continuity mistake: During the race, when Ben Hur is about to defeat Messala, his opponent's wheel disintegrates. However, as the chariot flips over, we see a complete wheel on both sides. (00:28:20)

Continuity mistake: When Judah goes to the place where the leper lives, a man tells him it's a cursed place and puts a lettuce or a cabbage on a plate. It has disappeared the shot later.

Dr Wilson

Continuity mistake: Count the number of chariots that start the race. Then count the chariots that get thrown out and the number that finish - there's one too many. There are 9 at the start, 6 get thrown out, and 4 finish.

Continuity mistake: When Judah takes rest on his way to Jerusalem funny things happen with his headgear. First, when he lies down it suddenly disappears under his head. Then he falls asleep, and when Balthasar from Alexandria approaches him a little later and he quickly gets up there is nothing under his head and back. (01:38:00)

NancyFelix

Continuity mistake: One of the first shots in the picture is a wide angle establishing shot showing a street scene in Jerusalem, with milling people, animals, etc. A tall figure in the background is slowly walking toward the camera. The figure is Charlton Heston, and the shot is an earlier segment of a shot used later in the movie when Ben-Hur is returning home from a trade expedition. Heston's costume is the same, but he's only clearly recognizable in the second sequence. Since the two scenes are set 33 years apart, perhaps the earlier figure is Ben-Hur's father. (00:07:40)

Continuity mistake: During Ben Hur and Messala's duel on the chariots, Messala's wheel-scythes tear away most of the right hand side of Ben Hur's chariot. When Messala has been thrown and Ben Hur crosses the finish line a few moments later, however, the camera has zoomed out far enough to reveal that his chariot is perfectly intact.

Continuity mistake: When Arrius makes the galley do a practice race and finally allows them to rest the oars are going up and down from the waves. However, when the camera is close on Judah the oars are perfectly still. (01:10:55)

NancyFelix

Ben-Hur mistake picture

Continuity mistake: Judah Ben-Hur removes the large ring he had received from Arrius and gives it to Pontius Pilate to return to Arrius. Following this, he returns to the leper colony with Esther, and he reunites with Miriam. When Judah is told Tirzah is dying, as Judah searches the cave for Tirzah, he is once again wearing the large ring he had received from Arrius, on his right index finger. Then, that ring vanishes when he finds Tirzah.

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Suggested correction: Ben Hur got the ring from Arrius, not from the Emperor. When he goes to the leper colony the first time he is still wearing the ring. Later he gives the ring to Pontius Pilate to return it to Arrius. Then, when he goes to the leper colony the second time he is not wearing the ring anymore.

NancyFelix

Aside from changing the mistake's wording to Arrius, the mistake is correct. Rewatch the scenes. Judah Ben-Hur takes off the large ring he had received from Arrius and gives it to Pontius Pilate to return to Arrius. After that scene, he meets with Esther, and they both return to the leper colony. Judah speaks with Miriam, his mother, and he's told Tirzah is dying. Then, as Judah begins to search the cave for Tirzah, Judah is now wearing the large ring he had received from Arrius, on his right index finger. That ring vanishes when he finds Tirzah. The mistake is quite valid and awaiting word change, as well as screenshots.

Super Grover

Continuity mistake: At the end of the chariot race, a heavily bloodsoaked Messala is taken to receive medical treatment. While something is done to his legs out of shot (amputation, presumably) an orderly in a clean white tunic leans his whole body weight on Messala to hold him down on the bed as he writhes in agony. When the orderly stands up, we see that his tunic is still spotlessly white.

Ben-Hur mistake picture

Continuity mistake: Right before the chariot race, Sheik Ilderim is on Judah's left side, pointing out the spikes on Messala's wheels. There's a shot of the wheels and then back to Judah, where the Sheik is now on Judah's right side. Judah holds the Sheik's forearm as the fanfare starts. Then a long shot, showing the Sheik, now on Judah's left side again, and Judah removing his hand from the Sheik's forearm.

ChiChi

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

Suggested correction: The sheik actually moves around the chariot to the right side. No continuity error.

You can't assume that the sheik moves. It's not shown and the shots are so quick in succession the sheik didn't have time to move.

ChiChi

Continuity mistake: When the baskets are being loaded to be lowered into the Valley of the Lepers, someone loads two heads of lettuce onto a basket. Just as the basket is being lowered, someone else throws in three more heads. When the basket hits the bottom, there are only three heads of lettuce.

wizard_of_gore

Continuity mistake: When the Sheik is taking down the bets, his man, who handed him the book, is standing behind him with his hands down. When the camera angle changes, his hands are folded. (00:07:45)

NancyFelix

Continuity mistake: At the very end, the scaffold that was used to erect the crosses vanishes between shots.

Continuity mistake: Ben Hur's horses change position. When the chariots are preparing for the race and at the starting line, the horse with the pink nose is third from the left, but at the end of the race, the pink-nosed horse is fourth from the right.

Continuity mistake: At one time during the chariot race Judah and Messala are going side by side. Then Judah steers his horses against the inner wall and almost comes to a complete halt. However, an instant later he is abreast with Messala again. (00:26:00)

NancyFelix

More mistakes in Ben-Hur

Quintus Arrius: Now listen to me, all of you. You are all condemned men. We keep you alive to serve this ship. So row well, and live.

More quotes from Ben-Hur

Trivia: The spectator crowd in the chariot race scene was partially made up of small wood models.

Dr Wilson

More trivia for Ben-Hur

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