Apocalypse Now

Continuity mistake: As Captain Willard walks up to Lt. Col. Kilgore's helicopter there's rain on the windshield. In the previous shot we see the windshield as the helicopter lands and it's dry. (00:26:50)

????

Continuity mistake: As Captain Willard smokes his cigarette ,Dennis Hopper says, "I'm curious. I'm very curious. Are you curious?" The captain has the cigarette between his lips pointing upward, but the in the next shot the cigarette is pointing downward and the ash is longer. (02:43:40)

????

Visible crew/equipment: After Clean is killed there's a shot of Lance sitting on the back of the boat holding a mirror in his right hand. This is not the actor Sam Bottoms but a longer haired thinner stand-in who's not wearing the black wristwatch that Sam wears in every other scene in the movie. (01:54:10)

????

Continuity mistake: Captain Willard picks up one of the death cards that Lt. Col. Kilgore threw on a dead body and it's the seven of hearts. This is not one of the cards that Kilgore threw down though. As he was naming each one as he threw it and Captain Willard was walking close behind him. (00:28:05)

????

Continuity mistake: In a face on close-up as he talks to General Corman, Captain Willard's scar starts directly under the middle of his right eye. Later at Clean's funeral the scar is shorter and further to the right no longer directly under his right eye. (00:10:30 - 02:00:45)

????

Continuity mistake: As Clean says, "I gotta tape from my mom," we see a rope tied around the cleat on the starboard side of the boat. He doesn't go near the cleat as he listens to the tape but the next time we see this spot, right when the attacks starts, the rope is gone. (01:51:00)

????

Continuity mistake: At the beach party LColonel Kilgore stands up and says, "This is the first of the ninth, Air-Cav, son". If you look closely when he stands up the map that they were just looking at is gone. The colonel was holding it, but he doesn't have it nor does Captain Willard. (00:33:40)

????

Continuity mistake: As the camera pans along from the rear of the helicopter to the front Chef says to Miss May, "I've got every one of your pictures". Watch very closely as the camera shoots through the two windows on the helicopter's door. The Styrofoam head with the black wig on it that Chef asks the playmate to put on is not up against the left window as it is several shots later inside the helicopter. (01:27:45)

????

Continuity mistake: Roxanne prepares a pipe for Captain Willard and says, "It was the morphine he took for the wounds he suffered in his heart." The shadow of her left hand falls on her face as she holds the needle over the flame. In the next shot, however, the lighting has changed and the shadow is now nowhere near her face. (02:16:40)

????

Continuity mistake: On the boat Captain Willard reads newspaper clippings about Colonel Kurtz' and thinks to himself, "38 fucking years oldÂ…" and he is sweating profusely, with sweat dripping off of his face and neck. However, his right hand is perfectly dry when he lifts a flashlight and moments later a cigarette. (01:01:00 - 01:02:50)

????

Continuity mistake: Colonel Kurtz leaves after he finishes reading the Time articles and there's a close-up of Captain Willard's face and chest. He's soaking wet in the close-up but in the next shot, as he collapses trying to leave the room, his face and chest are dry and there isn't as much dirt on the left side of his chest. (02:52:25)

????

Continuity mistake: The gentleman sitting next to Roxanne in the tan jacket gets up and says, "Look, this is the truth, an egg, the white left, but the yellow stays". If you look closely the lazy Susan in the center of the table holding the oil and vinegar has been rotated between shots without being touched by anyone. (02:07:20)

????

Continuity mistake: The large bell shaped radar antenna is missing in several of the long shots of the boat as they go up the Nung River. It was there when the roof caught fire and we see it back again when they meet up with the Playboy bunnies (redux version). (01:20:30)

????

Apocalypse Now mistake picture

Continuity mistake: As the chopper pilot circles the courtyard he says, "We've got wounded down there" and a yellow flair is in the center of the courtyard. In the next shot of the soldiers running around down below we see the center of the courtyard but the yellow flare is not there having been replaced by a Vietnamese hat. (00:43:10)

????

Visible crew/equipment: Just before the Playboy helicopter leaves the USO show there's a shot of the stage from behind the audience and you can see the shadow of the cameramen moving from left to right on the shirts of the soldiers. (01:10:15)

????

Continuity mistake: The old gentleman sitting across the table from Hubert de Marais says, "Maybe in the future we can make something with the Vietminh" and the gentleman to the left of Roxanne replies, "Don't you understand". If you look closely the cigar that he just put into the ashtray in the previous shot, along with its smoke, has disappeared. (02:07:00)

????

Continuity mistake: At the Playboy Bunnies camps Lance picks up the second barrel of diesel fuel with both hands as he takes it off the boat. In the next shot both his arms are wrapped around it. (01:27:20)

????

Continuity mistake: After the helicopters land on the beach at Vin Drin Dop a soldier yells, "I'm not going, I'm not going" and we see huts that were blown up and burned down earlier in the scene untouched and as good as new. (00:42:50)

????

Continuity mistake: At the beginning of the arrow attack Chief Phillips yells, "Chef, open up, fire". Before he says this we see a wide shot of the shoreline with no vertical poles sticking up. In the next close-up shot of Chief Phillips there's a red spear stuck in the mud on the shore. (02:21:35)

????

Continuity mistake: Near the beginning of the movie when we first see Chef's tattoos up close the tip of the serpent's tongue on his left arm is entirely red. Later in the movie before he gets onto the Vietnamese sampan we see it again up close and the tip of the serpent's tongue is green. (00:24:05 - 01:35:55)

????

Kilgore: I love the smell of napalm in the morning.

More quotes from Apocalypse Now
Apocalypse Now trivia picture

Trivia: The man shooting the movie during the attack on the beach who says "Don't look at the camera" is actually director Francis Ford Coppola. (00:25:38)

More trivia for Apocalypse Now

Question: Why was only one officer (Captain Willard) sent to assassinate Colonel Kurtz? Isn't it very unlikely for a captain like Willard to be able to kill a powerful and influential and "insane" colonel like Kurtz?

L0gical

Chosen answer: Kurtz was protected by political connections and his military record from being relieved of command, and the Montagnard people whose village he was in were considered American allies, so they couldn't just send a force in to kill him or relieve him of command, but an individual assassin. (The US Government's "official" policy is that they do not engage in assassination, which is why "this mission does not exist, nor will it ever exist").

Captain Defenestrator

More questions & answers from Apocalypse Now

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Check out the mistake & trivia books, on Kindle and in paperback.