Apollo 13
Apollo 13 mistake picture

Factual error: During the launch sequence, a car that appears to be from the 1990's is parked in the background. (00:30:15)

RymoMymo
1

Factual error: During the final voiceover, Jim Lovell says "Fred Haise was going back to the moon on Apollo 18, but his mission never flew." In reality, it was Apollo 19, not 18, that Haise was tentatively chosen to command.

Factual error: The remaining smoke plume after the Saturn V liftoff is about 80 miles too low. It's apparent that an aircraft flew over the space center to leave a feeble 'movie' plume. Also, when the Apollo 13 crew blasts out of Earth orbit, the ship is pointed straight at the Moon, meaning that once they travelled the 240,000 miles to the Moon's orbit path, the Moon would be several thousand miles to their left.

Nicki

Factual error: Hanks as Lovell drives a red corvette. The real Lovell has said in interviews he drove a blue corvette.

Vader47000

Factual error: As Lovell explains the Apollo 1 fire to his son (in 1967), a large RC model aircraft can be seen over the child's shoulder. The N-Number (tail number) for FAA registration is N1976M. The particular aircraft represented on screen is a Cessna 182P - which according to FAA records - wasn't built until 1976. (00:14:50)

Factual error: When Marilyn is talking to NASA on the phone, the phone has a modular connector in the handset. This would be fairly impossible since AT&T did not start installing them in houses until 1976. Prior to that they would have been hardwired. (01:03:40)

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

Suggested correction: From Wikipedia: The first types of small modular telephone connectors were created by AT&T in the mid-1960s for the plug-in handset.

Suggested correction: A friend of mine had modular phone jacks in her house in the early 70s. I don't know if she had them as early as 1970 but definitely before 1976.

Factual error: At the end of the movie, when the astronauts debark from the helicopter and are surrounded by the crew of the U.S.S. Iwo Jima, there are a number of junior enlisted men wearing combination caps. (The type worn by Chief Petty Officers and commissioned officers.) That they are junior enlisted men is obvious by the rank insignia on their left sleeves and by the silver USN and Eagle emblem on their caps. (Chief's caps have a large gold and silver anchor insignia, and officer's caps have a large gold officer's crest.) The U.S. Navy did, for a few years, replace the junior enlisted men's traditional white hat with the combination cap, but the change was not announced until 1972, two years after the Apollo 13 mission, and the Navy reverted to white hats in 1983, twelve years before the movie was made.

mdwalker

Factual error: Moments before and during the lift-off of the Saturn V, Ken Mattingly is shown to be watching from a somewhat private grassy field. Wherever he is supposed to be, he is far too close to the launch pad. No unauthorized persons were allowed to be that close, and certainly not in an undisclosed and unsupervised area, not the least of which was for security reasons. The fact that Mattingly is an astronaut would not give him carte blanch to do this, and his training and discipline would prevent his ever attempting doing so in the first place. In reality, Mattingly was in Houston at Mission Control at the time. Otherwise it is a nice shot.

More mistakes in Apollo 13

Fred Haise: It hurts when I urinate.
Jim Lovell: Well, you're not getting enough water.
Fred Haise: No, I'm drinkin' my rations, same as you... I think old Swigert gave me the clap. Been pissin' in my relief tube.
Jim Lovell: Well, that'd be a hot one at the debriefing for the flight surgeons... Another first for America's spacemen.

More quotes from Apollo 13

Trivia: The exchange between Lovell and his wife about holidays ("you know that Easter vacation? There's been a change of destination ... how about the moon?") in fact took place in 1968, when Lovell was assigned to Apollo 8 and so missed his planned Christmas vacation.

More trivia for Apollo 13

Question: Did the interior of the Apollo 13 spacecraft really become cold, and frosty as shown in the movie?

Answer: From what I have read, according to the real astronauts, it was not as cold in the capsule as was depicted in the film. The movie exaggerated that for dramatic effect.

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