A Christmas Story

Continuity mistake: When Melinda Dillon breaks the lamp, it is broken into many pieces, but when Darren McGavin is gluing it back together it is now in much fewer and bigger broken pieces. Obviously different broken lamps were used.

Other mistake: When Ralphie and Flick are walking to school for the first time, they meet up with Schwartz, coming down the steps of his house which appears to be two houses down from Ralphie's. Later, when Ralphie is lying in bed after the soap in the mouth scene, the narrator (older Ralphie), states how "Three blocks away, Schwartz was getting his."

Rob Meears

Continuity mistake: When Ralphie's father is sitting in the chair reading the funnies (before the dogs ruin the turkey), there is a small gold lampshade sitting on the table next to him. In the first shot, there is a Christmas bow on it. In the following shot, the bow has disappeared.

Continuity mistake: When Raphie's mother is working on the turkey on Christmas morning, there is a jar of pickles on the table next to the turkey. In the next scene the mother is coming up from the basement carrying a jar of pickles and places them on the table in the same place.

Visible crew/equipment: Towards the beginning of the movie when Ralphie's dad is in the basement fixing the furnace and the entire family is staring at the door, you need to keep an eye on the left side of the screen. There is a crewmember in the family room, who is on the screen by mistake. You don't see the person right away, but it is in that sequence when you see the mom in the shot, then you can see the leg of the person very quickly in the background.

Continuity mistake: When the "old man" first puts the lamp on the edge of the box there is no light fixture on which to place the shade. He then returns the lamp to the box and when he brings it out, there is a place to put the shade. Also as he hands it to the mother and then takes it back to put it on the table, there is no electrical cord visible. However, just before he sets it down on the table you can see a cord in his left hand.

Continuity mistake: When the father comes in for hot water for the car, the furnace goes haywire and black smoke comes out of the register. The father goes to the basement to fix the furnace and yells upstairs for somebody to open the damper. The mother goes over and begins to move the bottom lever and then changes her mind and moves the top lever all the way to the left. In the next shot the top lever is all the way to the right while the bottom lever has miraculously moved all the way to the left.

Continuity mistake: When Ralphie's dad is going through the wooden box to see his prize there is a lot of excelsior in it to keep it protectively packaged. When he's bent down digging through it, he has a lot of it on his back. In the next shot when he is standing up, he's perfectly clean.

Continuity mistake: After Melinda Dillon breaks the leg lamp, she holds the broken leg in her arms in a pile of three separate pieces. After Darren McGavin asks "What broke?", the 'leg' magically heals itself into one single, straight, yet loosely-knit piece. (00:52:20)

Visible crew/equipment: In the scene after Ralphie beats up Farcus in which Melinda Dillon finds Randie in the cupboard, you can see a shadow moving continuously on the chair pushed under the table on the right hand side of the shot.

Visible crew/equipment: As the buck teeth are being handed out at the beginning of the classroom scene, the camera pans to follow Miss Shields and you can very briefly see the shadow of the boom microphone on the wall at the top of the screen. (00:15:00)

Continuity mistake: In the kitchen scene, as Ralphie's father comes in for hot water to thaw the car, and then turns his attention to the furnace, there is a white funnel on the shelf beneath the clock. The camera follows him to the basement steps and the smoke coming from the register. In the next shot, showing the anxious family, Ralphie's mother moves forward and the funnel has moved to the sink behind Ralphie's head.

Continuity mistake: When Ralphie fights Scut Farcus, he starts out with snow on his hat and jacket, from the snowball Scut threw at him. Then in the next frame, there's no snow on him. It goes back and forth like that throughout the whole fight scene.

Continuity mistake: When the father is reading the paper on Christmas morning, the dogs run by him coming from the front door, but in the previous scene the only door open for the dogs to come in through was the backdoor. (01:25:25)

Revealing mistake: In the scene on Christmas morning when the Bumpus' dogs run in and eat the turkey, during the shot of the dad sitting in the chair reading the comics, one of the dogs bumps the camera and jostles it a little bit.

Continuity mistake: Early in the movie when Ralphie catches up with Flick on the way to school, Ralphie is holding a book or folder that has the top left corner folded over. In the next shot when Schwartz joins them, the fold is now on the bottom left side. Ralphie's arm covers the top corner of the book most of the time so look closely during the last few seconds of the scene.

Continuity mistake: In the playground scene when Flick first sticks his tongue to the flagpole, the street in the background has been snowplowed. The kids all go back in to the classroom without Flick. When the teacher asks "Where's Flick?", and looks out the window and sees him at the pole, the same street in the back ground has not been plowed.

Continuity mistake: During dinner Randy has been eating like a "piggie" and his face is covered with food, when the doorbell rings. As he gets up to answer the door he looks to left and his face is clean but then as they go to the door there are mashed potatoes on his face again.

Mom: Ralphie, what would you like for Christmas?
Adult Ralphie: Horrified, I heard myself blurt it out.
Ralphie: I want an official Red Ryder carbine action two hundred shot range model air rifle.
Mom: No. You'll shoot your eye out.

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Question: Why do the parents have two twin beds in their bedroom, instead of one double bed? I thought that was just a TV gimmick from the old days when they weren't allowed to show a man and woman in bed together. Did people really sleep like that, or was it just a production design decision for the film? The movie was made in the '80's after all.

Krista

Answer: It's most likely a reference to the twin-bed movie standards from the time in which the movie takes place (late '30s to early '40s).

Chosen answer: Many married couples did (and still do) sleep like this. For example, one may be a restless sleeper and not wish to disturb their partner. Or they may just prefer to sleep alone. It's all down to personal choice, I don't think there's a rule that says couples have to share a bed.

umathegreatstationarybear

The original poster has never been married. It is seldom that husbands and wives continue sleeping in the same bed after the first couple years of marriage.

Charles Austin Miller

Very interesting... I know of only one couple that sleeps in different beds. That is because they are on different sleep schedules. I know many couples and we all sleep with our spouses. Don't get me wrong, if we get a hotel room that has 2 full or queen beds, we are sleeping in individual beds. But other then that, we sleep in our bed together.

"Seldom" is a bit of an overstatement - studies seem to suggest about 15-25% of couples sleep separately.

Studies? Could you provide a link to such studies? I speak from decades of knowing many, many happily-married couples, the overwhelming majority of whom sleep in separate beds and even separate rooms.

Charles Austin Miller

15 per cent of Britons said if cost and space were not an issue, they would sleep in a different bed to their partner: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/uk-couples-sleep-separate-beds-partner-yougov-survey-a8504716.html. A 2005 National Sleep Foundation poll found that nearly one in four American couples sleeps in separate beds or separate rooms: https://sleepfoundation.org/sites/default/files/subscription/sub003.txt. Clearly many couples do, but many don't. Certainly the vast majority of couples I know share a bed, regardless of how long they've been together. "Seldom" is I think overstating it. The majority of people you know may sleep separately, and more power to them! No right or wrong, but that doesn't appear to reflect the broader picture.

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