Blue Thunder

Blue Thunder (1983)

24 mistakes

(4 votes)

Other mistake: Murphy lands the helicopter on a railway line so an oncoming train will destroy it completely, and this happens exactly on cue with huge, dramatic explosions and flying debris. Apparently the train driver doesn't think this is important enough to interrupt his busy schedule - he doesn't stop the train. We do not hear brakes being applied - the wheels would make a noise like the sky coming down - and the train doesn't slow down at all - it just keeps on going.

Plot hole: Apart from the impressive pyrotechnics, what is the point of destroying the Blue Thunder helicopter? By far the most expensive, time consuming and technically complex part of producing any aircraft is the design and development phase - once the prototype is in the air production is relatively straightforward. The bad guys can make new Blue Thunders any time they like, and Murphy has destroyed the only evidence he has that there was a criminal conspiracy behind the whole programme - the 'videotape' he has of blurry, false coloured characters will convince nobody. Without the helicopter to back him up that tape is of no value to him.

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

Suggested correction: The Blue Thunder is caught on camera by a TV helicopter during the aquaduct chase which is evidence it existed.

A helicopter is filmed on CCTV, yes, which gives no detail at all to its use, where it came from, or anything about the conspiracy behind it. The helicopter is proof of the sinister plot and Murphy just destroyed it.

Blue Thunder mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Roy Scheider's partner is killed, he is run over by a car. After the car runs him over, his body rolls and you can see his arms swinging freely even though his hands were bound by the plastic ties. Later when you see his body, his hands are bound again. (01:10:30)

Continuity mistake: When Blue Thunder is flying over the drive-in theater the shadow shows a bell JetRanger. (01:18:25)

Mister Ed
Blue Thunder mistake picture

Deliberate mistake: When Cochran sabotages the Jet Ranger helicopter by loosening the nut on the bolt securing the linear actuator governor, the bolt is inserted in the wrong direction. The bolt should have been heads up to prevent it from falling out as it did causing the helicopter to crash. Moreover, the linear actuator is on the opposite of the engine from where Cochran disconnected it. (00:38:05)

William Bergquist

Revealing mistake: Right after a fleeing felon is shot dead and falls into the pool (whereupon Murphy says "He's bought it"), he appears to be swimming to stay afloat. (00:12:10)

Factual error: When the F-16s take off to shoot down the Blue Thunder, both planes have the same tail number 068. All military jets have individual tail numbers. (01:30:25)

Continuity mistake: When Frank Murphy, his girlfriend, and her son are in the car, the boy asks to borrow Frank's wristwatch, and Frank gives it to him. Moments later, Frank is still wearing the watch. (00:43:45)

Allister Cooper, 2011

Other mistake: The weather in L.A. sure is interesting, as well as the sunset/nightfall time. Near the end, before Frank Murphy notices the train and lands the helicopter, it is near sunset. The sky is still blue when we see a close-up of the train operator. By the time the latter notices the helicopter flying above the train, it is already night time. And just before landing on the rails, at night, the helicopter hovers a bit, and you can see that it is raining. When Frank exits the helicopter, it is a clear night. (01:43:00)

Allister Cooper, 2011
Blue Thunder mistake picture

Continuity mistake: In the climactic chase scene, when Murphy is shot through the window, he is shot in his right arm and there is a hole in the window with blood on it. When he does a 360 degree loop in the helicopter the broken window and blood appears on his left sideĀ—the opposite window to that which he was shot through. (01:42:20)

Blue Thunder mistake picture

Revealing mistake: When the van gets flipped over outside the BBQ chicken place, you can see the cannon that flips the van over. (01:32:20)

Other mistake: Look carefully at the helicopter during the strafing scenes; at one point, the gunfire is not coming from the Blue Thunder at all, but from a Bell helicopter at a distance. Also, when we see the Blue Thunder helicopter during the attack, the cannon does not seem to be pointing at its targeted shots, let alone turning.

Allister Cooper, 2011

Continuity mistake: As the Chevrolet Vega arrives at the TV studio, the roof is shown to have sustained significant damage, as if something huge has fallen on it. The right headlamp area is also smashed and the light gone. But at no time in the chase does anything occur to cause any of this damage. (01:27:50)

johnrosa

Deliberate mistake: The Army Sergeant that gives the Blue Thunder presentation's mustache is out of military regulations - much too thick and too long. (00:30:20)

Continuity mistake: When Murphy drives into the parking lot to use the pay phone, we see his license plate as 909 KMB. But when the police dispatcher announces Murphy's license plate, it's "909 King Edward Boy" (KEB).

Excelsior

Factual error: Cochrane chases Murphy in a Hughes 500 which has a top speed of 147 mph and easily keeps up with him, demonstrating that Blue Thunder's top speed is less than 150 mph. The F-16s sent after Blue Thunder have a stall speed of 175 mph. They would have to slow down to the point of falling out of the sky to have a shot at Murphy. Its utterly impractical and far more likely that the military would have sent AH-1 Cobra attack helicopters after him.

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

Suggested correction: Not necessarily. The F16 (and other fast movers) can and do engage slow moving helos all the time. They just engage them by missile from a long distance, where speeds are irrelevant.

stiiggy

Visible crew/equipment: As Blue Thunder performs its loop just before the bad guy's helicopter is destroyed, there is a shot of him looking around in his helicopter. In this shot you can see the camera helicopter reflected in the glass.

manthabeat Premium member

Character mistake: When Murphy shoots down an F-16, the guy says "we just lost a M-16."

Blue Thunder mistake picture

Visible crew/equipment: When Blue Thunder approaches the chicken shack, you can see an entire camera crew on the roof of the building across the street. (01:31:45)

Continuity mistake: When Lymangood is running away from the car he crashes in to a bike and his hands and arms are free, not tied at all.

Lymangood: This sucker will do everything but cook your breakfast.

More quotes from Blue Thunder

Trivia: The registration number N77GH is visible on a gold placard on right surveillance camera' but only civilian aircraft are given November numbers. Military helicopters only have a series of numbers like on the tail. You aren't supposed to notice Blue Thunder's real "N" number, but it is there throughout the movie making it known it was truly a civilian helicopter.

More trivia for Blue Thunder

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