The Fugitive

Revealing mistake: During the St. Patrick's Day parade, Kimble removes his coat. In the next scene, he hasn't got the coat anymore, and he HASN'T dropped it. Don't be fooled. If you look to his right in the scene just after he takes it off, you can see a man carrying a coat that is the exact same colour and design. I assume this guy is supposed to be hiding the coat from view, but you can plainly see it. The guy is wearing a green hat. Kimble had no time to give it to him before the scenes changed.

Continuity mistake: After Kimble escapes from the prison bus moments before it's demolished by a train, he steals an ambulance, is chased through the mountains by a police helicopter, is trapped in a tunnel, escapes by crawling through a drain and jumping from a very tall dam into a raging river. A very thrilling sequence, but he's supposed to be in Illinois, where there is no terrain remotely resembling this.

Continuity mistake: During the scene in the dam tunnels, Kimble holds Gerard at gunpoint. In the first close-up, Gerard has three strands of hair that are all apart from each other. The shot cuts to Kimble and back to Gerard, and the strands are all together. Then it goes back to Kimble, who says "I didn't kill my wife." When it goes back to Gerard again, the strands are apart once more. We know he couldn't have moved them because he has his hands up. Later, when Gerard is holding up Kimble at the tunnel opening, there is only one strand on his forehead.

Continuity mistake: The scene in which Kimball in Cook County Hospital takes Joel to the lift starts with Kimball looking at the boys chest x-rays. In the first shot Kimball is looking at the front side of it and in the second shot (with camera looking over his shoulder) at the back-side but he does not let the x-ray out of his hand between the shots.

Factual error: During the car chase that leads to the tunnel, there are several freeway signs pointing to Murphy, North Carolina, and the film is set in Chicago.

Revealing mistake: When Kimble jumps from the dam, the falling body is clearly a dummy, otherwise he broke every single bone in his body before he even jumped.

Factual error: In the scene on the El where the cop gets shot, you can hear the train engineer saying, "Balbo, next stop"; this is also said later on the police radios, when they say there is an officer down at the Balbo station. Two problems: 1) There is no Balbo station. 2) Even if there were, the station they start from is at Lake street (looks like the main transfer station at Clark and Lake), and the train pulls out going north. However, Balbo is south of Lake street.

Continuity mistake: When Richard Kimble comes back to the hospital and is seen by the nurse, they embrace. There is a shot with him facing the camera immediately followed by a shot of her facing the camera. Their arms have somehow magically changed positions from the original embrace.

Visible crew/equipment: When Kimble is walking through town the morning after his escape from the bus, he passes by windows, and one shows a Steadicam camera man in the reflection.

Factual error: When Dr. Nichols leaves the damaged elevator, and Kimble later exits (the infamous arm in the door shot), neither would be possible as the elevator was emergency stopped by Nichols and can be seen positioned just below the floor. The elevator doors would not line up with the floor doors, and both sets would need to be manually opened.

Deliberate mistake: The dummies are obvious when the jail bus is flipping over onto the railroad tracks.

Visible crew/equipment: When Kimble starts to move out from under the train, he looks up and we see smoke visible above. There is also a crew member looking down into the hole on the far right side of the opening. The person's head moves up at the end of the shot.

jmat

Continuity mistake: Just before Harrison takes his leap from the pipe in to the dam, Tommy Lee Jones tells him to put his hands up. When Ford puts them at head height, Jones then tells him to put them above his head. Ford does this from the far out shot, but when there is a close-up of his face, his hands are at head level. This occurs in a fraction of a second so there was no chance for him to move them.

Continuity mistake: Kimble arrives at a hospital to shave himself. He opens a drawer and places medicines on top of it. The amount and type changes between one frame and another.

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: In the flashbacks seen at the start of the film, Charles Nichols introduces Kimble to Alec Lentz. When this flashback is revisited later in the film, when Kimble breaks into Frederick Sykes' house, the words and actions of Nichols and Lentz are slightly different to what was seen earlier in the film. (00:04:15 - 01:24:55)

mightymick

Other mistake: After the train crash the news crews and sheriff are interviewing the surviving corrections officer. He boasts how heroic he was to rescue his partner from the wreckage, claiming that he was his partner and he would do the same for him. The only problem is that they are surprised when they find that same surviving corrections officer several scenes later and rush him to the hospital. Why would they be surprised to find an officer they already knew about?

Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: The first corrections officer had been exposed as a liar and made up the story that Kimble and Copeland were dead. Nobody believed he heroically saved his partner. Everyone assumed since the partner hadn't been found right away that he died in the wreck. It never occurred to anyone that Kimble would put his own life on the line to save a guard, so actually finding the guard alive was a surprise.

BaconIsMyBFF

There is nothing formally wrong with the order of events here. The assumption is that the second officer's whereabouts are known at the time of the senior officer's story - but that is actually only an assumption. Finding the second officer would of course not be important to the main story in any way, and thus this sub-story was not explained in the movie. To word it an alternative better way, why would the senior officer make up this story of saving the second officer, if the officer had not been located yet?

The second officer's whereabouts are most certainly not known when the first officer is interviewed. The first officer is interviewed the night of the crash and the second officer is found the next morning.

BaconIsMyBFF

Plot hole: When Kimble is heading towards the dam driving the ambulance in the tunnel, his lane is empty in the wide angles, yet in the close-ups he is swerving the steering wheel violently as if there were cars ahead. This keeps changing back and forth. It adds up for tension, but it is totally ludicrous.

Sacha Premium member

Factual error: When Kimble is being interviewed by the police, a cop says "book him." We later learn the police were still trying to find out if a one armed man could've done it. The police can't arrest someone if the investigation is still ongoing. An arrest is supposed to mark the end of an investigation, the trial is the next stage.

MikeH

Continuity mistake: After the bus crashes, Kimble unlocks his hands and throws the keys onto the floor in front of Copeland. Two shots later the keys are lying in a different position when Copeland grabs them off the floor.

mightymick

More quotes from The Fugitive

Trivia: Director Andrew Davis had Harrison Ford start the film with a beard, and then shave it off, rather than using a disguise for Richard Kimble throughout the film.

More trivia for The Fugitive

Question: Towards the end, before the confrontation with Kimble and Nicholls, the guy who was tracing Kimble's phone records tells the Marshalls that Kimble telephoned Sykes on the night of his wife's murder. But obviously it wasn't Kimble calling Sykes, it was Sykes using Kimble's phone. But why would Sykes be calling himself?

jenn_s_h85

Chosen answer: He didn't. A key plot point is that Nichols borrowed Kimble's car on the night of the murder. The call to Sykes, which is expressly stated by the marshals as being on Kimble's car phone, was from Nichols, presumably arranging to meet so that he could give Sykes Kimble's keys to get into his house to lie in wait for him.

Tailkinker Premium member

Thank you for explaining it. I've seen it several times and never realised how it went down.

And Tommy Lee Jones tells Kimble that they knew Nichols called Skyes from his car, but how? Wouldn't the more logical answer have been that the US Marshals thought that Kimble called Sykes from his car to tell the killer his wife was home alone? There is no way the US Marshalls would have known that the Kimble let Nichols borrow his call - that's the mistake in the movie! It actually should have made the Marshalls suspicious of Kimble, not exonerate him.

The Marshals know Kimble let Nichols borrow his car because Kimble told the police when he was initially interviewed following the murder. He gave a detailed account of his actions and whereabouts that night and mentioned that Nichols had borrowed his car. It didn't seem suspicious to the police at the time because Richard claimed he fought with a one armed man he didn't recognize; a story the police did not believe because there was no evidence of this and Kimble's wife "identified" her attacker as Richard. Gerard puts everything together when he realises that Nichols lied about knowing Lentz.

BaconIsMyBFF

How did Sam figure out that Nichols borrowed the vehicle and made the call to Sykes and gave him keys, etc? I know in the laundry he reveals that he knew this but when/how did he figure it out?

Answer: This is more of a question really. What kind of defense attorney did this high dollar, Dr. Kimble hire who do not show their defendant pictures of the one-armed men the police question? How do his attorneys not ask him "OK, which of these one-armed men did you fight with in your house?"

The prosecution is not required to inform the defense of every person the police interview or question. They are only required to give the defense whatever evidence they have against the accused. Simply questioning someone in a perceived dead only counts as evidence against the accused if the prosecutor mentions it in court. If the prosecutor were to say "We interviewed a one-armed man named Sykes and he says he doesn't know you", then Kimble's defense would be required to be given access to Sykes. We can assume this never happened.

BaconIsMyBFF

The Chicago police DID question Sykes after the Kimble murder. Review the scene where Sykes returns to his apartment after Kimble has been there. Girard starts asking Sykes questions, at first Sykes says he doesn't know anything about Kimble but then "remembers" that he had been interviewed by the police right after the Kimble murder. However, Sykes says that he gave the police an alibi, with 15 people supposedly confirming that Sykes was on a business trip and not in Chicago. The movie then implies that Sykes had been a Chicago cop and lost his arm "in the line of duty." Remember that the Chicago police focused on Kimble pretty quickly. Their investigators may have interviewed Sykes, but they likely didn't even come close to considering him as a potential murderer. Even with Sykes likely matching Kimble's description of the one-armed man, the police likely saw Sykes as a former cop... A former cop who had an alibi confirmed by 15 people. As I understand it, prosecutors don't have to tell defense attorneys about everyone that the cops question. They only have to tell the defense about potential witnesses that might be called in connection to the criminal trial. In this scenario, Sykes wouldn't have been part of the criminal trial (Again, supposedly on a business trip confirmed by 15 people on the night of the murder) and thus Kimble and his lawyers would never have known about his existence.

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