Independence Day

Corrected entry: When the President "fires" his Secretary of Defense, SecDef protests by saying "you can't do that!" He, in fact, is right. The SecDef would have to be impeached by Congress.

Correction: While the Senate must confirm Cabinet officials, they work for the the President directly. He can fire them at any time.


Corrected entry: The Secretary of Defense turns towards the President and gravely announces "We can expect the destruction of all major cities in 72 hours". Wow, I'm impressed. Either the US or Russia could accomplish that in less than half an hour. Incredibly advanced technology ain't what it used to be...

Correction: The point wasn't that the destruction of all major cities would take place in "only" 72 hours because of incredibly advanced technology. The point was that virtually nothing could be done to prevent further destruction and that the human race had only 72 hours left.


Corrected entry: When in the area 51 base, a screen in the background shows a night vision view of a plane landing. Why is a Panavia Tornado fighter bomber landing in an American secret base, when they are flown in England, Germany and Italy?

Correction: Tornado's are kept in the US in squadron strength for training European pilots.


Corrected entry: In the mother ship Will and Jeff light up their two last cigars after transmitting the virus. On the ground contact is lost for "20 mins" - yet when they are picked up on the ground the cigars are still at full length and haven't burnt down a bit.

Correction: My father smokes that kind of cigar and I can tell you that they last at least 3 hours.


Corrected entry: The shape and size of the aliens isn't exactly humanoid, but, when Jeff and Will board the space ship the seats seem to be pretty well designed to accept a human body...

Correction: They'd taken the original seats out and redesigned it for humans.


Corrected entry: If the alien is in a hard protective space suit, how can Will Smith knock him unconscious for so long by just punching him? Must have been quite a hard punch.

Correction: In the ancient world and middle ages sling shot was used to attack heavily armoured soldiers as a hit from a stone/bullet was likely to cause concussion, if a helmeted soldier was hit on the head. This may be the reason that an already concussed alien pilot was knocked out for so long. It could also be that Will gave the alien a good kicking on the way to Area 51!


Corrected entry: When Will Smith is trying to fly the craft, he pushes forward and the ship rams against the back wall. He then laughingly turns the "instruction sheet" taped in front of him upside down. This would also reverse left and right, as well as forward and backward.

Correction: He's not stupid. It's not like turning the paper sheet over will change the direction the controls move the craft. It's only to help him remember the whole forward-backward thing.


Corrected entry: The planetary saucers in the movie are 15 miles in diameter, and are 2.5 miles in height. Assuming that 9/10 of the ships are air or lighter then air gases, and that the ships' walls are made of a metal with the density of water (this is a very generous estimate), then each ship would weigh 100 billion tons! No matter what source of flight used, these ships would create a pressure of 30 atmospheres on anything below it. Most buildings would crumble under 5 atmospheres, and our bodies would flatten like pancakes long before that.

Correction: You're assuming a closed system. If the air being compressed as the ship descends could not escape, then indeed the pressure would rise to 30 atm or whatever. But since there is no wall forcing the air to stay under the ship and get compressed, it can escape to the sides and up and therefore equalize the pressure.


Corrected entry: When Captain Steven "Steve" Hiller and David Levinson are getting ready to fly out on the alien ship, the camera shows Hiller the launchpad for the missile that they are to use on the mothership. Hiller says, "It's just like the AMRAAM launch pad on a stealth." AMRAAM stands for Advanced Medium Range Air to Air Missile. Both the F-117 "Stealth Fighter" and the B-2 "Stealth Bomber" only carry air to ground weapons. Neither stealth is equipped to carry AMRAAMs, and therefore wouldn't have AMRAAM launchpads.

Correction: This is a movie where aliens attack earth, and where they have a spaceship in Area 51. Not every project from the military is public, so it's perfectly feasible that they could have a new stealth aircraft with AMRAAM launchpads on it.

Ronnie Bischof
Independence Day mistake picture

Visible crew/equipment: When Dr. Okun is about to unlock "the vault", and says, "The freak show," a crewmember wearing a black and white striped shirt is hiding under the vault's floor, right behind Okun. (Only visible on fullscreen DVD.)

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More mistakes in Independence Day

Captain Steven Hiller: Y'know, this was supposed to be my weekend off, but got me out here draggin' your heavy ass through the burnin' desert with your dreadlocks stickin' out the back of my parachute. You've gotta come down here with an attitude, actin' all big and bad...and what the hell is that smell?!

More quotes from Independence Day

Trivia: When Steven and David are being chased out of the alien mothership, David says "Must go faster, must go faster." This is a line Jeff Goldblum said in the film Jurassic Park (1993), when he was riding in the back of a jeep, getting chased by the T-Rex. That line from Jurassic Park was loved so much by ID4 filmmakers, they looped it into the dialogue. Jeff never actually spoke that line when ID4 was being filmed.

More trivia for Independence Day

Question: In the special edition there's a lot of mentioning of Randy Quaid's younger son being ill and having to take his medication. It's implied that the mother died of the same illness. What is he ill with?

Answer: The reference to the boy's adrenal cortex, and the few symptoms that appear, sound like Addison's Disease.

More questions & answers from Independence Day

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