Memphis Belle

Memphis Belle (1990)

25 mistakes

(2 votes)

Factual error: For a B-17 crew that has flown 24 missions, those on the Memphis Belle don't act very professional or experienced. Gunners that fall asleep and fight like schoolkids over lucky charms, navigators with hangovers, co-pilots that leave their posts to have a turn at the guns. If the real Belle crew had been like that, they would not have lasted that long.

Factual error: When Lt. Col Derringer (John Lithgow) is introducing the crew of the Belle at the beginning of the film, he describes Rascal as being 18 years old. Yet he holds the rank of Staff Sergeant (E-6), a rank usually achieved after at least 5-6 years of military service. Same can be said for Eugene, who is described as being 19 years old, who also is a Staff Sergeant.


Factual error: In the last minutes of the film, as Memphis Belle is coming in to land, you just catch a glimpse of a very big hangar. This is Hangar 1 at Duxford, the Imperial War Museum where a lot of the flight filming was based at, and was built in the 1980's. This hangar was rebuilt and enlarged and is now called Airspace.


Continuity mistake: During the crash landing propeller blades are flying off. Later on when then plane comes to a stand still the blades are back but bent backwards.

Klaus Egvang

Visible crew/equipment: During the take-off sequence, in a close-up showing a ground crewman pulling the chock away from the front of a tire, production crew and a van can be glimpsed in the far distance out of focus before being obscured by more period accurate vehicles and extras.

Richard Rascal Moore: Yeah Luke, why go back to the daily grind of being a lifeguard? Take it easy.

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Trivia: Very few flyable examples of the B-17 existed at the time of the shooting of the movie. One airplane "stood in" for several by having its decals changed. The B-17G featured in the film has since undergone a meticulous restoration and now lives in Renton, Washington, USA. Though it is fully flyable, certain certification issues with the Federal Aviation Administration have kept it grounded.

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Question: What was the ball of fire as the planes are landing to the right of the screen?

Answer: That would be a flare being fired from the aircraft. Yellow ones meant the aircraft had sustained serious damage, although that was often self-evident, and a red one meant that there was a seriously injured crewman on board - prompting first aid teams to be ready to meet the aircraft once it had landed. Their was also an unofficial green flare that meant someone had completed their tour of duty.


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