Full Metal Jacket

Factual error: When 8-ball gets shot, in the shot which shows the platoon ducking near a wall with Cowboy, Joker and Animal Mother in the front, there are two weapon related errors. Cowboy's M-16 has a nickel (silver colored) firing assembly and Joker's M-16 has an A2 type pistol grip. The A2 types were introduced somewhere around the 80s, and nickel plated assemblies are rarely used (and were invented after Vietnam, too). The nickel assembly is visible at the beginning of the shot, and you can see the A2 grip when Joker is changing magazines (while Cowboy shouts cease fire).

Factual error: In 1968 the USMC were still using the Sikorsky UH34/S58 helicopter (powered by a piston engine) but the helicopter seen in the film is the British version of the same aircraft, the Westland Wessex - gas turbine powered, it has a quite different nose shape from the original American version. (00:47:47)

Factual error: In the sniper scene where Animal Mother disobeys Cowboy to go help 8-Ball and Doc, and Animal Mother peeks around the corner of a building to try and see the sniper and the sniper shoots at him, narrowly missing his face, the impact of the sniper's bullet on the wall and the sound of the gunshot occur a split second before the muzzle-flash in the distant window from where the sniper is shooting from. This would imply that both bullet and sound have travelled faster than light. (01:37:15)

Factual error: When Pvt. Pyle commits suicide, he shoots himself through the skull at point-blank range with the tile wall of the bathroom only inches from the back of his head. The wall becomes splattered with blood and brain tissue but no hole in the wall is visible. Both the shot through Hartmann and the one through Pyle would have punched through the bathroom walls and quite possibly caused injury or death to anyone on the other side. (00:44:09)

Factual error: Joker would not have been allowed to go through basic training and out into the field with wire-rimmed glasses. He would have been issued plastic/cellulose-framed Regulation Prescription Glasses (AKA BCGs or "Birth Control Glasses") like Private Cowboy's.

Captain Defenestrator Premium member

Factual error: At one point Joker is doing chin ups, with Hartman motivating him. Joker does three chin-ups, but not a single one of them was done properly. You're supposed to lock your elbows all the way out on the way down, and your chin needs to clear the plane of the bar. Joker never locks his arms out, barely gets over the bar. In reality Hartman would have been all over him about this, drill instructors are notoriously strict about proper technique.

RJR99SS

Factual error: The film is set in and around 1968. In one scene, a copy of Ursula LeGuin's novel "The Word for World is Forest" is seen at Joker's bedside. This novel was not published until 1976.

wizard_of_gore Premium member

Factual error: When the Marines are in Vietnam, most of them have the M-69 flak jacket. This body armor was first issued in 1969, while the rest of the film takes place in early 1968. In addition, the vest would've been largely issued to the Army, not the Marines. Their vest would've been the M-55, which is different in shape and design.

Matdan97

Factual error: The flashlight that Pvt. Joker is using on his last night of basic training is a "Mag Light" that wasn't invented until approx. 6 years later. And the "yield" traffic sign the platoon is jogging past is of the style that didn't come into existence until approx. 1973-74, (i.e. red and white). In the 1960's the sign would have been yellow with black letters.

Full Metal Jacket mistake picture

Continuity mistake: Pvt. Pyle is on the rifle range with Gunnery Sergeant Hartman right behind him. When filmed from Pyle's right side, he is wearing a white wrist wrap/brace but the shot moves behind him and it is gone. Back to the right side and it reappears. (00:35:50)

More mistakes in Full Metal Jacket

Helicopter gunner: Anyone that runs is V.C. Anyone that stands still is well disciplined V.C.

More quotes from Full Metal Jacket

Trivia: Many of the extras in the boot camp scenes were actually serving members in the British Territorial Army. They were chosen because it was assumed that they would be familiar with drill. However the English drill practices were so different from the American Marine corps practices that R. Lee Ermey himself had to re-train the British troops to march in Marine Fashion. Ermey said it was twice as much work trying to re-train them than it would have been just training raw recruits.

RJR99SS
More trivia for Full Metal Jacket

Question: Why was Gunnery Sergeant Hartman so mean to Leonard Lawrence AKA Private Pyle? Why was he always mad at him?

Socks1000

Chosen answer: A Drill Instructor is always mad at the recruits in order to forge discipline. Private Pyle was the biggest screwup in the unit, thus creating more work for him.

Captain Defenestrator Premium member

Answer: It also promotes unity and brotherhood against a common enemy, the drill instructor.

More questions & answers from Full Metal Jacket

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