The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

Continuity mistake: When at the Black Gate, the armies of men are surrounded by Orcs, then after Aragorn's "For Frodo" line, they charge across the screen from left to right. When they are running, in a shot where Gandalf is seen on the very right of the screen and 2 Warriors of Rohan with axes are in the front of the shot, you can see through some gaps and there are no Orcs, just an open field. Thousands of Orcs just - disappeared.


Audio problem: At the battle on the fields of Pelennor, before Legolas leaps onto the Mûmak, as he kills the Orcs audibly he shouts, "Fifteen! Sixteen!"; however, visually his lips do not.


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Continuity mistake: At Minas Tirith, when Gandalf knocks Denethor out with his staff and then shouts, "Prepare for battle!" the silver broach he wears on his cloak is backwards (not upside-down). Interestingly, his belt is actually on properly, and the background is also as it should be.


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Continuity mistake: At Minas Tirith there is a wide shot of Gandalf on the balcony, and as he begins to cough while he smokes, Pippin lies in the bed behind him. Yet, in the very next close-up, as Gandalf continues to cough, Pippin now stands beside the bed, with his new Gondorian garments actually spread out on the made bed in front of him. Then, in later shots the unmade bed is perfectly visible. (Extended Edition)


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Continuity mistake: When Sam withdraws Sting from Shelob's eye, the sword is covered in eye gloop and he is holding Sting in his left hand. The shot switches further out and the gloop is gone and Sting has moved to his right hand.


Deliberate mistake: When Théoden and the Rohirrim ride out of camp, as Éomer shouts, "Form up! Move out!" and in the following close-up when Théoden shouts, "Ride! Ride now for Gondor!" please note that Théoden's sheath is at his left side and Éomer's strap hangs down his left shoulder to his right side – whereas normally they are the opposite way. Both shots are flipped for direction continuity.


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Deliberate mistake: Just after we hear Gandalf shout, "Get the women and children out! Get them out! Retreat!" there is a flipped shot of many soldiers with their swords at their right side, as some run through the gate being held open by others.


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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.


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

Revealing mistake: Trying to save Faramir, Pippin shouts, "Gandalf!" and in the first shot from behind Pip, he runs towards Gandalf, the Gondorian soldiers run towards the camera and he is perfectly Hobbit sized. However, in the next shot, facing Pippin, he is not only further away than in the previous shot, when he runs towards the camera as the Gondorians run past him, Pippin is now much taller, almost as tall as the soldiers he passes.


Continuity mistake: While Eowyn is with dying Theoden, after he says, "my body is broken" there is a black smudge over Eowyn's right eye in the next three shots, whereas it is not in the previous or following shots.


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

Revealing mistake: After Arwen's vision, an escort says to her, "We cannot delay," and in the wideshot as she turns her horse around, the face of the riding double is perfectly visible.


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

Continuity mistake: When Faramir is carried up and placed near the White Tree, Denethor walks down the stairs to approach him. The two soldiers who stand on the stairs outside the palace doors repeatedly change from standing on the 4th step, to the 5th step, then to the 4th, back on the 5th, and so on, in the first and all the following shots.


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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.


Continuity mistake: When the Witch King attacks Theoden and Eowyn fights him, the Witch King's helmet changes between shots. The gap at the bottom where the chin should be varies in width. In some shots the gap is small, nearly non-existent, while in other shots the gap is rather large.

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Deliberate mistake: Just after Gandalf shouts offscreen, "Fight! Fight to the last man! Fight for your lives!" there is a flipped close-up of Gandalf turning, when he hears Pippin shout, "Gandalf!" and his sword is at his right side, the opposite of the norm.


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Continuity mistake: When the front hatch of the Orc's siege tower lands on the stone wall, smashing some points, in the next side shot the wall and its points differ. For example, when the door lands the nearest unsmashed point actually has a broken tip, but is the next side shot the tip is whole and pointy.


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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.


Deliberate mistake: After entering the Tower of Cirith Ungol, Sam runs down a passageway and looks up and in the next shot he starts to run up the stairs. These two shots are flipped as things on his body are backwards.


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Continuity mistake: At Dunharrow, after sending Merry off to the smithy, in the wide shot Éowyn speaks with Éomer outside the tent and there is a standing torch behind her. Yet in the next shot Éowyn says, "Why should Merry be left behind, he has as much cause to go to war..." and as Éomer moves his head the visible torch now stands up against the tent pole. In the next close-up another change behind her, to her left.


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Deliberate mistake: After Théoden shouts, "Make safe this city!" in the flipped close-up of Éomer, as he reacts to the approaching Mûmakil, his sheath and helmet straps are both noticeably backwards.


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