Chinatown

Chinatown (1974)

73 continuity mistakes

Continuity mistake: At 1972 Canyon Drive before Jake meets Katherine Cross, the dried flowers in the vase behind the sofa have been rearranged since we saw them at the beginning of the scene.

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Continuity mistake: After Mr. Palmer walks over and tries to pick up Claude Mulvihill's gun (which Jack kicks away) we see Jack's hat on his left. In the next shot as Jake picks it up it's now on his right.

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Continuity mistake: After Jake walks threw the door at 1972 Canyon Drive the mirrored makeup case in front of the staircase moves between shots. At first the top is angled slightly, then when we see it again it's opened fully and straight up in the air.

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Continuity mistake: At 1972 Canyon Drive, Jake speaks to Evelyn Mulwray and there's a dress lying on the open suitcase behind her as she sits on the couch. In previous shots, it's not in the suitcase, and no one went near it.

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Continuity mistake: At 1972 Canyon Drive, the shadows on the left stairway wall change radically between shots as Jake walks in.

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Continuity mistake: At 1972 Canyon Drive, Jake sits down and says to Evelyn Mulwray, "Do you know any good criminal lawyers?". If you look closely the dress on the chair to his left has been rearranged between shots.

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Continuity mistake: At 1972 Canyon Drive, Evelyn Mulwray says to Jake after he walks threw the door, "Have you slept?". The pearl necklace she's fiddling with is over her collar in one shot and under it in the next.

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Continuity mistake: Jake takes Lieutenant Escobar to Curley's house, and the flower pot on the ledge and the shades in the window move between shots after he walks up to it.

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Continuity mistake: Throughout the scene at 1972 Canyon Drive, the handle on the hat box to the left of the sofa changes in relation to the hat sitting on top of it.

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Continuity mistake: At 1972 Canyon Drive as he talks to Evelyn Mulwray, the curtain above Jake's head extends almost halfway to the center of the rod. Earlier when we first saw it, it was pushed all the way to the left side.

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Continuity mistake: At Ida Sessions' house, Lieutenant Escobar shows Jake the photos that he took at Echo Park earlier in the movie. If you look closely though, Katherine Cross never holds her hat in front of the bridge as we see in the third photo. The other photos also have problems.

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Continuity mistake: Jake takes Lieutenant Escobar to Curley's house and as they drive up, he takes his right hand off of the backseat of the car. In the next shot both of his arms are leaning over the backseat.

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Continuity mistake: Jake goes back to Evelyn Mulwray's house only to find the gardener working in the back yard. As he walks over to talk to him the shadow on the circular brick walkway goes from half shaded to totally shaded between shots.

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Continuity mistake: At Hollis Mulwray's office, the shadows on the pictures to the left of Russ Yelburton's door fall to the right of the pictures as Mulwray's Secretary walks in to see him. Two shots later, as she walks out of the office, the lighting has been changed and the shadows fall behind the pictures. Later the first shadows return.

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Continuity mistake: After Jake slaps Evelyn Mulwray, the vase on the table on the right of the sofa disappears between shots.

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Continuity mistake: After his altercation with the farmer, Evelyn Mulwray drives Jake home and he pulls out a piece of paper with Jasper Lamar Crabb's obit on it. This scrap of paper is not the same one that he tore out of the newspaper in the restaurant before he met with Evelyn Mulwray. The side of this scrap of paper is even, but if you watch as he rips the newspaper in the restaurant, the tear moves to the left as it goes up the sheet.

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Continuity mistake: At Ida Sessions' house, Jake's tie has been retied and his collar changes if you look at them throughout the scene.

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Continuity mistake: John Huston sees Katherine Cross and says to her, "I'm your grandfather," and we see a black car passing by them on the road. In the next shot, it's gone.

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Continuity mistake: Jake spots Hollis Mulwray's glasses in the pond and the gardener goes in to fetch them. At first we see the glasses sitting on a rock in about six inches of water with hardly any seaweed around them. In the next shot he reaches in about two feet of water and pulls out the glasses encrusted in seaweed.

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Continuity mistake: As they are escorted out of the Mar Vista rest home, Jake kicks Claude Mulvihill in the stomach and if you look closely his hat never leaves his left hand as he smashes his head into the front railing. In the next shot as Claude drops his gun to the floor we see the hat on the ground next to it.

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Continuity mistake: After he takes a shower Jake's stitches are very visible as they stick straight out of his nose. In the next shot they are different and you can hardly see them. This happens many times throughout the movie.

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Continuity mistake: When Evelyn Mulwray meets Jake at the restaurant, the maitre d' walks away from them. In the next shot, he's standing looking at them with the waiter by his side.

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Continuity mistake: As Jake takes their picture from the roof top we see Katherine Cross and Hollis Mulwray's reflection in the camera lens and her dress is a direct sunlight in the reflection but not in the previous shot.

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Continuity mistake: As Jake and Noah Cross sit down to eat lunch the column holding up the roof of the building is on his left. He gets up to leave only to sit down again and now the column behind him is on his right.

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Continuity mistake: When Evelyn Mulwray meets Jake at the restaurant, the spots on her veil change between shots after we first see her.

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Continuity mistake: Jake walks back into his office after getting a shave at the barber shop and sees Duffy standing by the water cooler which has a tank that is one-quarter full. Two shots later as he tells his joke about the Chinamen the water tank is half full.

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Continuity mistake: At the office, Jake picks up the photos of Hollis Mulwray and Noah Cross, which Lawrence Walsh gives him, with both hands. In the next shot he's holding them with his left hand.

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Continuity mistake: Jake Goes to the Los Angeles County Hall of Records. The coat hanging on the coat rack and the chair behind "the weasel" move between shots without being touched.

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Continuity mistake: Before the farmer's son hits Jake over the head with his crutch there's blood on the right side of his shirt. In the next scene as he wakes up to see Evelyn Mulwray there's less blood on his shirt.

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Continuity mistake: Jake opens the middle draw of Hollis Mulwray's desk and then closes it. Several shots later he opens the right draw of the desk and we see that the middle draw is still open.

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Continuity mistake: At Ida Sessions' house, Lieutenant Escobar shows Jake his phone number on the wall above her phone. In the close-up of the phone number there's a card stuck in between the wall and the phone and if you look closely the left edge is frayed. When Jake walked into the room it wasn't.

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Continuity mistake: A farmer shoots Jake's radiator, which spurts a steady stream of water and steam. In the next shot when the car crashes the radiator is not leaking.

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Continuity mistake: As Evelyn Mulwray stands in front of Jake at the table in the restaurant, look closely at the red chair behind them. When she first walks in, the seam is under the wood post in the center of the screen. In the next shot, it's been moved about two feet to the left.

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Continuity mistake: Throughout the movie, keep an eye on Jack Nicholson's tan. He goes from a toasty brown to washed out to toasty brown several times, in the same lighting sometimes he appears pale and sometimes he's tan.

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Continuity mistake: Before Jake gets out of the barber's chair to yell at the banker the news paper in his hands is folded in half. In the next shot it's laying flat in his lap.

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Continuity mistake: At 1972 Canyon Drive, Jake walks up to the front door, which is in the shade. In the next shot, as he walks in, the door is lit up.

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Continuity mistake: In her bathroom Evelyn dabs Jake's nose with a piece of cotton and gets some blood on it. In the next shot it's another piece of cotton without any blood on it. Then in the shot after that the blood is back.

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Continuity mistake: Back from the Mar Vista rest home, Evelyn and Jake have a drink at her house and the tape on Jake's nose is flush with his nostril. In the next shot it's peeling off.

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Continuity mistake: At the Mar Vista rest home, Evelyn Mulwray and Jake take a look into the room where the old women are sewing. In the next shot as they walk in, the woman on the left disappears. She's sitting next to the woman that points after Jake says, "Are any of you Emma Dill?".

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Continuity mistake: At the Mar Vista rest home, as he smashes Claude Mulvihill's head into the front railing, Claude drops his gun to the floor and we see Jake's hat on the ground next to it. Mr. Palmer walks over and tries to pick the gun up as Jack kicks it away and we now see the hat is overturned even though Jack and Claude moved away from that spot during their fight.

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Continuity mistake: After their visit to the Mar Vista rest home, Evelyn and Jake have a drink at her house and both glasses have more liquid in them between shots.

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Continuity mistake: As Jake gets chased by the farmers in the orange grove the marks on his windshield change between shots.

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Continuity mistake: As Evelyn Mulwray drives Jake home after his altercation with the farmer, look closely at the piece of paper he pulls out of his pocket with the landowners names on at. It doesn't have any of the paper tabs hanging off of it that we saw before as Jake stole it from the Hall of Records.

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Continuity mistake: Mulwray's Secretary and Jake have a conversation as he waits to talk to Russ Yelburton. They do an excellent job keeping things tidy on her desk between shots but the white flowers and Jake's hat move without anyone going near them.

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Continuity mistake: At Hollis Mulwray's office, Jake looks at the picture of Noah Cross on the wall. At first the shadow of his head falls on the picture but in the next close-up shot it's gone.

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Continuity mistake: Jake and Noah Cross sit down to eat and the piece of lemon on Jake's plate moves between shots in the close-up.

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Continuity mistake: Jake says to Evelyn Mulwray, "Whoever set your husband up, set me up" and the shadow on the house behind her moves several feet to the left as the scene progresses.

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Continuity mistake: Jake has tea at Evelyn Mulwray's house and she agrees to drop the charges against him. Evelyn is wearing a scarf that she unties but does not take totally off her neck. In the next shot it's off her neck.

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Continuity mistake: Jake walks back into his office after getting a shave at the barber shop and his hair is combed backwards. Later in the scene as he tells the joke about the Chinamen his hair is still parted in the middle but combed sideways to the left and right.

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Continuity mistake: The left side of Barney the barber's bowtie is tied differently between shots as he gives Jake a shave.

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Continuity mistake: As Jake gets a shave in the barber shop we see the picture he took of Katherine Cross and Hollis Mulwray in the newspaper. If you look closely it's obvious that these are not the same actors we saw in the previous scene.

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Continuity mistake: In the barber shop as Jake gets a shave look closely at the shaving cream on his face. In the first shot it reaches all the way up to his lower lip, but when he gets out of the barber's chair to yell at the banker, it's nowhere near his bottom lip.

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Continuity mistake: When we see Katherine Cross and Hollis Mulwray's reflection in Jake's camera lens, Hollis is standing in a different spot than we saw in the shot before. In the reflection he's in front of the chair but in the previous shot he was next to the chair.

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Continuity mistake: Hollis Mulwray rows Katherine Cross around Echo Park in a rowboat. When we first see them her hands are in her lap but in the next shot her left hand is touching the side of the boat.

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Continuity mistake: When Jack says to Curley, "Enough's enough", the statue to the left of Jack moves in front of the picture of Franklin Roosevelt between shots.

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Continuity mistake: Jake follows Hollis Mulwray out to the ocean. In one shot he's standing in front of some boulders then in the next shot Mulwray's out near the water about 50 feet further.

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Continuity mistake: When Jack's trying to outrun the guys shooting at him, they shoot his tire, sending the trim ring flying. However, when the car nails the tree, the tire looks completely undamaged and the trim ring is back on.

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Continuity mistake: At Hollis Mulwray's office look closely at the drapes behind his secretary as Jake first walks in. No one goes near them but by the time she gets back to her desk they've been rearranged.

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Continuity mistake: After leaving Evelyn Mulwray, Jake goes to the Oak Pass Reservoir to look for Hollis Mulwray. If you look at the design on his tie, it's obvious that it has been re-tied.

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Continuity mistake: when Mayor Bagby speaks at the water and power meeting the map behind him curls up on the left in some shots and not in others.

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Continuity mistake: There's a very cool shot of Katherine Cross and Hollis Mulwray's reflection in the camera lens as Jake takes their picture from a roof top while they're having lunch. The problem is as the cameraman zooms in, Jake's hands are shaking but the reflection in the lens doesn't.

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Continuity mistake: In the very first scene of the movie Curly looks at the pictures of his wife that Jake took. He gets to the fourth picture and rotates it 45 degrees to get a better look. As he goes on to the next picture he lifts the fourth one up, and in the next shot he's holding a different picture.

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Continuity mistake: When Jake walks into Ida Sessions' house he looks into her bedroom and the shade on the left window is three quarters of the way up and in the dark. Several shots later we see this spot again and now the window is lit up and the shade is halfway down.

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Continuity mistake: After he takes a shower Jake draws his shades and the light goes dark from the wrong direction, behind him instead of from the window.

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Continuity mistake: The farmer's son hits Jake over the head with his crutch and as he falls to the ground the bandage around his right nostril has moved from earlier in the scene.

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Continuity mistake: At Hollis Mulwray's office, Jake holds up the same envelope that we saw as Evelyn Mulwray talked to him in the restaurant. The address is now different and the street number is smaller.

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Continuity mistake: When Jake and Noah Cross sit down to eat, their glasses are empty. In the next shot Jake's glass is filled with white wine. Later the waiter fills the empty glass again with white wine.

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Continuity mistake: As Evelyn Mulwray and Jake talk at the restaurant, look closely at the seat behind him. In the long shots of Jake, both sides are lit up, but, in the close-ups, the left side is in the dark.

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Continuity mistake: When Evelyn Mulwray meets Jake at the restaurant, look closely at the table behind them in the center of the screen. Two men are eating there and the tablecloth and napkin in the man's lap are rearranged between shots.

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Continuity mistake: Jake walks into Hollis Mulwray's office and there's nothing on the green desk mat in front of his secretary. In the next shot her right arm is leaning on an appointment pad.

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Continuity mistake: As he returns to his office, Sophie tells Jake that Evelyn Mulwray is in there. Notice the three pictures on the wall between the two windows, which are perfectly straight. In the next shot after he walks in the bottom picture is crooked.

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Continuity mistake: At night, Jake goes back to the Oak Pass Reservoir where Hollis Mulwray was murdered. At first he stands to the left of the no trespassing sign but in the next shot he's on the right of the sign.

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Continuity mistake: As Jake gets a shave in the barber shop look at the rings holding up the lower drapes in the front window and you'll see that they move between shots without anyone going near them.

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Quotes

Noah Cross: 'Course I'm respectable. I'm old. Politicians, ugly buildings, and whores all get respectable if they last long enough.

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Mistakes

At 1972 Canyon Drive before Jake meets Katherine Cross, the dried flowers in the vase behind the sofa have been rearranged since we saw them at the beginning of the scene.

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Trivia

Director Roman Polanksi makes a cameo as the hood who knifes Jake's nose.

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