Corrected entry: A black Union soldier is shown fighting in the crater near the start of the film. In reality there were thousands of black Union troops who fought that day but none was in the crater. The Union army was racially segregated, so he would not have been there as part of a white unit.
Corrected entry: In the scene where Ruby and Ada are packing up the horses to go look for Ruby's father on the mountain, there is a shot of Ada walking behind Ruby and you can see that she is wearing modern white sneakers, not her black boots.
Corrected entry: In one scene, Ada and Ruby are awakened by Stobrod's playing on the fiddle. It's clear from the light levels that it's well-into mid-morning, and neither has risen from bed. But Ada and Ruby are the only two people working the farm (if Kathy Baker's character is with them at that point, she's still bedridden). As made clear by the novel, people working a farm always rise at or before dawn, as the animals can't go without being fed that long. It's not a character mistake: a) Ruby's character is that of a very capable and responsible person, who would never leave animals to suffer unfed, and b) even if they both had, the cows would be bawling audibly in the background. Even on Sunday, animals have the same needs.
Corrected entry: Doesn't Ada seem to remain amazingly clean, groomed, and well manicured throughout the film?. The problem is, people in those times certainly didn't wash every day (as more realistically demonstrated by Ruby). Although Ada and her father were obviously a bit more well-off than others, and therefore would've probably cared much more about hygiene, even she couldn't have washed every day. Just look at her overall appearance during the film. Nice hair, nice nails etc., very unrealistic.
Corrected entry: When Ada and Ruby go up into the mountains to find Ruby's father, Ada's hair is in braids, yet when she shoots the turkey and then sees Innman, her hair is down.
Corrected entry: Inman is hospitalized in late summer of 1864 and receives a letter that Ada had written the previous winter (1863). When Ruby arrives at Ada's house in the fall of 1864, Ada has been alone for a full year. Although she does no work, cannot cook or chop wood, and does not tend the garden or livestock, she has managed to survive. She could not have survived that winter without heat and food. When Ruby arrives after the farm has been neglected a full year, the garden has remnants of some crops, and the livestock and chickens are still around. In fact, the cows need milking. All livestock would have been dead or gone, and the farm would have been totally overgrown with weeds. Although it is late summer and too late for any planting, they put in a "winter" garden of greens and onions, which they could not possibly plant, grow, and harvest before the early winter of the mountains.
Corrected entry: In the winter scene where the voice-over says the new year is 1864, it should be 1865. The opening of the movie concerns the siege of Petersburg and the dramatic blowing up of a section of the Confederate lines. The main character Inman is wounded and hospitalized. In the book, he is wounded at Fredericksburg, a battle of 13 Dec. 1862. The blowing up of Confederate lines at Petersburg took place 25 June 1864. So the subsequent New Year would have been 1865, in the last four months of the war.
Corrected entry: When Reverend Monroe has passed away and the rain is falling around him, his eye is seen to flutter.
Corrected entry: In the scene where Renee Zelwiger's father is getting his hand bandaged, white cloth is used and in the next scene the bandages are brown.