The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

Continuity mistake: When Deagol comes out of the water, the shot opens as he is submerged in water below his arms. As he crawls up there is quite an obvious difference in wetness of the overalls that were submerged for the take and the area above it, including the overall straps. Also, as Smeagol goes after the Ring, there's a close-up of Deagol's backside and there are patches on Deagol's pants that are completely dry. Then Smeagol begins to choke Deagol and as he goes down to the ground, his backside is completely wet again. (00:01:55 - 00:03:15)

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Continuity mistake: Deagol stands up on shore, raises up his right fist and in the wide shot there are blades of grass on his fingers. In the next close-ups while there are no grass blades, the tips of his fingers are visibly much cleaner than in the next wide shot as Deagol stares at the Ring in his palm with extremely muddy fingers. Yet in the next close-up of Deagol's fingers closing over the Ring, after Smeagol says, "Give us that, Deagol, my love," the fingers look the same as in the previous close-up. (00:02:00)

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Continuity mistake: When Deagol first finds the ring and is cleaning it off, the fingertips of his left hand become wet with mud. Seconds later, when he and Smeagol are grappling, those same fingertips drag across Smeagol's face-yet it is not even smudged. (00:02:30)

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King mistake picture

Continuity mistake: After Smeagol kills Deagol, Smeagol opens up Deagol's fist to claim the Ring. In the first shot, Smeagol leans over Deagol, then Smeagol's right hand holds Deagol's wrist and Smeagol's left hand opens Deagol's fingers. Yet in the close-up, now Smeagol's left hand hold's Deagol's wrist and Smeagol's right hand opens Deagol's fingers to reveal the Ring. (00:04:20)

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The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King mistake picture

Continuity mistake: Smeagol walks into the cave as his voice-over says, "They called us murderer." He coughs, and "gollum, gollum" comes out. In the 1st wide shot as he's clutching himself, Smeagol's fingernails are very thick, long and stubby. In the 2nd, a close-up of his hand, it reveals the Ring in his palm and his fingernails are perfectly normal and flat with dirt underneath. In the 3rd, a wide shot, his hand is open and the fingernails are very thick, long and stubby again. The 1st and 3rd shots are one sequence that was split to add the close-up in the middle. (00:04:50)

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Continuity mistake: When Frodo and Sam wake up in the culvert, the area of ground just outside of it in the interior shot looking out differs from the exterior shot as Sam stands at the opening. (00:06:15 - 00:07:25)

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Continuity mistake: As Gandalf et al. ride toward Isengard, Merry stands up on the stone wall and to his right the sword is leaning upright against the stone. In the second shot of Merry and Pippin, the sword is leaning down, over to the left. Then in the third shot of them, the sword is upright again. (00:10:00)

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Continuity mistake: When Eowyn and Merry are talking while they are resting on the ride to Gondor, Eowyn's hair goes from tucked into her shirt to a few pieces untucked and then back to all her hair tucked in. (Extended Edition). (00:10:30)

Bobbert

Continuity mistake: At Orthanc before Gandalf and company confront Saruman, Treebeard is standing right in front of them and some Ents are in the background, but in the subsequent shots of the group on the ground and from above Orthanc, Treebeard and the other Ents are no where to be seen. After Saruman dies and Pippin finds the Palantir, Treebeard is back again. (Extended Edition) (00:11:00 - 00:14:20)

Continuity mistake: When Gandalf, Theoden, et al arrive at Orthanc, they stop when they're greeted by Treebeard and then are confronted with Saruman. The positions of the huge spiked wheel in front of Orthanc, Treebeard, the riders, etc., from the time they ride in, as well as the amount or even existence of debris in the water, changes drastically in consecutive close-ups, overhead and wide shots. (Extended Edition) (00:11:20)

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Continuity mistake: When Pippin takes the palantir out of the water and Gandalf takes it from him, in several consecutive shots of Pippin, the burnt bark in the water changes to sticks, then back to bark again. (00:11:30)

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King mistake picture

Continuity mistake: At Isengard, when Pippin recovers the palantir, in two shots it's large enough to fill both of his hands, so that he has to spread all of his fingers to hold it. In the next shot of Pippin and Gandalf, Pippin raises one hand holding the palantir and Gandalf quickly takes it. In this particular shot, as Pippin hands the palantir to Gandalf with one hand, the circumference of the palantir is noticeably much smaller (while still in Pippin's grasp), than it was in the previous shots. (00:11:30)

Continuity mistake: At Isengard, Pippin reaches for the palantir in the water. In the first shot underwater, he clutches the palantir tightly with both hands and the lines in the palantir are vertical. In the next consecutive shot as he brings it up out of the water, still clutching it tightly, the lines are now horizontal in the Palantir. He did not shift the seeing-stone in his tight grip, it was just simply shot at different times. (These palantir's lines permanently encompass the circumference of the surface of the sphere, they do not change.) (00:11:35)

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Revealing mistake: In the first scene in Edoras (the capital city of Rohan). The first pan over Edoras: You can see that the pan is shown in reverse, with the smoke going into the chimney and the fire at the end is burning backwards. The flags are also fluttering the wrong way. (00:12:10)

Deliberate mistake: In the Extended Edition, the location of the Tomb of the Stewards is shown to be behind the city of Minis Tirith, at the cemetery on the mountainside, accessible via a long bridge. Flaming Denethor later runs to the far prow of the city, leaps off and plummets. The distance between the two areas makes it is obviously entirely impossible for someone, even adrenaline charged Denethor, to run this distance while his oiled flesh burns. Admitted on the commentary that it's poetic license, due to director Peter Jackson's long awaited vision for this dramatic shot. (00:13:15 - 00:30:50)

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Revealing mistake: At Edoras, Merry and Pippin sing the song about the Green Dragon while dancing on the table. When Merry kicks Gamling's mug of ale off the table, Merry's foot gets thinner and partially disappears in this shot as does Pippin's foot in the next shot as he kicks up. (00:13:55)

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Revealing mistake: When Merry and Pippin are entertaining the men and women of Rohan with their "Green Dragon" song, there is a woman at the right rear corner of the table on which the hobbits are dancing who looks at an empty spot behind Merry at the finale. No doubt the actress was looking at the spot she presumed the hobbit would be "pasted" into during editing, but she's off a few feet. This is further emphasized when she hold out both hands in a "take a look at this" gesture and again indicates the empty space behind Merry. (00:14:15)

Continuity mistake: As Gollum says, "Too risky. Too risky. Thieves... Musn't wake them," in the two close-ups Frodo and Sam sleep with their backs against a wide rock wall and a single tree between them near Sam's head. However, when Gollum says, "Musn't ruin it now..." and after Sam yells, "You treacherous little toad!" in the next close-up and wide shot of the area, it is very different than in the first two shots. (00:15:10 - 00:17:45)

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The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King mistake picture

Continuity mistake: Legolas sends an arrow directly to Grima atop Orthanc, and as Grima starts to fall back the arrow is quite visibly well below the coat's fur. However, when Grima actually hits the ground, the arrow is now higher up, protruding from the fur. (Extended Edition.) (00:16:35)

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Continuity mistake: After Pippin retrieves the Palantir, in the close-up facing him, he stands directly in front of the center of the spokes at the wheel's hub, as he hands the Palantir to Gandalf. However in the next shot as Gandalf takes hold of the Palantir, they are quite far from the wheel. Next shot Pippin stands close again. (Extended Edition) (00:17:55)

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