Monty Python's Life of Brian

Continuity mistake: At the end of the scene with the ex-leper you see Brian's mother open the door to their house twice; first in the background of a wide shot, then in a closer shot. (00:15:25)

Continuity mistake: During an early scene, the People's Front of Judea are conversing while Brian is selling food. The man to the right of Reg has no tear in his shirt collar at the beginning of the scene. Once Brian approaches them his shirt collar has a significant tear that wasn't there before. (00:21:20)

Continuity mistake: Pilate is making his guards laugh by telling them about Biggus Dickus' wife Incontinentia Buttocks. Brian crawls away, while Pilate rushes up his steps in a wide shot of the room. But then the camera cuts to a close-up of Brian, and he crawls away again.

Continuity mistake: In the balcony scene, the Gourd Follower woman is in the foreground in shots from the window, but long shots show only the man behind her. (01:07:00)


Continuity mistake: At the crucifixion, the soldier says, "Let's settle this" with his arms raised. In the following shot on his front, his hands are on his hips. (01:23:35)


Continuity mistake: When Stan says he wants to be a woman at the coliseum, he is facing to his left. In the following shot, he is facing down and to the right. (00:19:25)


Continuity mistake: The cross carried to the crucifixion scene by the Saintly Passer-by looks nothing like the one they crucify him on. The cross bar is a narrow pole, and the upright is much smaller than the one he ends up on. They do not crucify him on a different cross - he is roughly pushed down on the flimsy prop cross he carried, then instantly is hauled upright on a sturdy one.

Continuity mistake: After Brian is caught by the alien spacecraft, his yamulka is in front of his hairline. But, once the camera pulls away to show the aliens his yamulka is placed very far back on his head. (00:43:09)

Continuity mistake: When Mandy and Brian are walking home after the stoning, Mandy tells Brian he needs to get a job. But a few minutes later, when the ex leper is bartering with them for a donation, Mandy says that one of the prices he's asking for is more than what Brian makes in a month.

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Suggested correction: She was lying to him to get him to go away.


Revealing mistake: When the blind man is telling Brian he can see again and falls down in the pit, you can see the white mattress that he lands on. (01:01:10)

More mistakes in Monty Python's Life of Brian

Boring Prophet: There shall in that time be rumors of things going astray, erm, and there shall be a great confusion as to where things really are, and nobody will really know where lieth those little things with the sort of raffia-work base, that has an attachment. At that time, a friend shall lose his friend's hammer, and the young shall not know where lieth the things possessed by their fathers that their fathers put there only just the night before, about eight o'clock.

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Trivia: Michael Palin as Pontius Pilate was genuinely daring his guards to laugh about Biggus Dickus' name. The people playing the soldiers were told not to laugh during the scene but were not told what Palin would be doing or saying.

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Question: When Brian is about to be crucified, soldiers arrive with news of his release. The soldiers ask for Brian, and everybody shouts "I'm Brian." Is this a parody of the "I'm Spartacus" episode in the Kirk Douglas/Stanley Kubrick film of "Spartacus"? If so, would this support my feeling that Life Of Brian is primarily a parody of classical/biblical 'epic' films?

Rob Halliday

Answer: Actually, no, the primary goal of "Life of Brian" was not to parody biblical films. Terry Gilliam has stated that the "important" objective of the movie was "to offend a lot of people," particularly "Jews and Christians, because they're easy to push around." Gilliam further said that, at the same time, they were "very cautious not to offend Muslims, because they're the dangerous ones." Both Gilliam and John Cleese have also said that, while the Pythons took care to avoid blasphemy (not directly mocking Jesus of Nazareth, with whom the Pythons had no quarrel), they fully intended that the film be heretical (in defiance of Catholic Church doctrine and dogma). Make no mistake, "Life of Brian" is not supposed to be a lighthearted parody of biblical films; it's supposed to be a sharp stick in the eye to the Roman Catholic Church.

Charles Austin Miller

Answer: The scene is a parody of the scene in "Spartacus" (although they are saying "I am Brian" for completely different reasons.) However, the film is meant to be a satire on religion itself and not a parody of epic films. The Pythons did a lot of research to try and accurately portray 1st century Judea, which is why it may look like a biblical epic, but I can't recall any biblical epics they parodied. At the time it was considered blasphemous, and not a parody, and banned in several areas in the UK and some countries. Although the Pythons argued it's not blasphemy but heresy.


Answer: You are indeed correct. It is a parody of the "Spartacus" scene but mostly of religion.

raywest Premium member

Perhaps not so much a parody of "Spartacus" as a tribute to Stanley Kubrick. Monty Python writer Terry Gilliam was very much a fan of Kubrick films and became friends with Kubrick in the 1980s. Gilliam claimed that Kubrick had even spoken with him about making a sequel to Kubrick's "Dr. Strangelove" (with Gilliam as director). Chances are, the "Spartacus" allusion was part of Gilliam's contribution to the "Life of Brian" screenplay, a tip-o-the-hat to Stanley Kubrick.

Charles Austin Miller

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