Amistad

Continuity mistake: When the Amistad is captured by the American naval vessel, and Cinque jumps out of the dinghy to swim for it, the frontal shot of his face with the pursuing boat behind him shows the sun overhead, at midday or morning, towards viewers' left. When the shot changes to behind him (chaser's view), the sun is dead in front of him and setting.

Continuity mistake: The lettering on Amistad's dinghy changes, from all capitals when the Africans come ashore, to upper and lower case when they return to the ship.

Continuity mistake: When Cinque approaches the bonfire, he's wearing his coat. When the camera angle changes, the coat has disappeared and he's wearing a white shirt.

Jean G

Factual error: The Portuguese slave ship Tecora was one of the most notorious of the illegal slave ships, but no slaves were thrown overboard in mid-ocean as shown in the film - at least on the trip in question. The Portuguese were pros at the slave trade and had plenty of food on board to feed their "cargo" between Sierra Leone and Cuba. The only time a slave would be thrown overboard in mid-ocean was if his/her health posed a serious risk to the crew and "cargo". (Slaves were too valuable to just throw away for the price of their food.) Historically, though, there were instances where whole cargoes of slaves were tossed overboard. The British Royal Navy zealously patrolled the waters off West Africa to try to shut down the slave trade. If a British ship was sighted, the slavers sometimes tossed slaves overboard to destroy the evidence and prevent the seizure of the ship.

More mistakes in Amistad

Theodore Joadson: There remains one task undone. One vital task the Founding Father's left to their sons.
John Quincy Adams: Yeah?
Theodore Joadson: ...before their thirteen colonies could precisely be called United States. And that task, Sir, as you well know, is crushing slavery.

More quotes from Amistad

Question: In the last scene of the film the ship appeared to me to be sailing in a westerly direction (sun sets in the west). Wouldn't the ship need to go east from USA to sail to Sierra Leone?

Maureen

Chosen answer: It's likely that the scene was set in the morning, meaning they would be going east.

Greg Dwyer

More questions & answers from Amistad

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