North by Northwest

Continuity mistake: While drinking in the train Thornhill's hand is grabbing the glass or not, depending on the shot. The position of the glass to his face also changes.

Sacha Premium member

North by Northwest mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Thornhill is about to be run over by the truck his jacket is covered in dust. When he falls on the ground it's spotless, only to appear dirty a shot later.

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: When the truck is about to run Thornhill over, skidmarks running along the road appear/disappear randomly between shots.

Sacha Premium member

Continuity mistake: When the plane crashes against the truck its wipers face the left side. A shot later it's facing the right side.

Sacha Premium member

North by Northwest mistake picture

Revealing mistake: When Thornhill's cab arrives at the UN there's a couple behind him, a rear projection. Later on, when Valerian's car arrives at the UN the same projection is used, with the couple a mere two meters away form where they were before.

Sacha Premium member

North by Northwest mistake picture Video

Revealing mistake: In the shooting scene in the Mount Rushmore cafe, a boy in the background puts his fingers in his ears, because he knows the gun is about to be shot.

Continuity mistake: In the scene where Eve writes on the note pad she doesn't write enough. Later you can see much more to the address. (01:20:50 - 01:25:15)

????

Continuity mistake: When Eva Marie Saint grabs the statue from James Mason and bolts, the spies chase after her. They had no way of knowing she would do such a thing, and yet they are suddenly equipped with long, heavy-duty flashlights.

Factual error: When Cary Grant is attacked by the crop duster, he is supposed to be between Chicago and Indianapolis. Unfortunately, northwest Indiana looks nothing like this. The scene in the movie has miles and miles of treeless landscape. Even in the flattest farmlands of Indiana, there are many visible groves of trees.

Continuity mistake: In Eva Marie Saint's hotel room, after the crop-dusting, Cary Grant attempts to copy a note she has removed from a pad, by scratching with a pencil point - horizontally. In the close-up of the note, it has been scratched vertically.

Continuity mistake: The first scene that they show of the train going up the Hudson River is wrong. The hills in the background are much further up the river past Croton NY. When they are eating the train is back down near the wider part of the Hudson around Tarrytown NY. (00:45:25 - 00:47:00)

????

Visible crew/equipment: Cary Grant is crouching in his bunk bed in the train. The lights of the studio get reflected on his broken sunglasses when he shows them to Eve.

Continuity mistake: While Thornhill and his mother are investigating Kaplan's hotel room, he decides to try on one of the man's suits from the closet to see if he and Kaplan are similar in stature. He tries on a navy or dark colored suit coat and then holds the pants up against himself to check the length. In the close up of the trousers, they are now a light gray in color. The camera returns to a full shot and, once again, he has the darker trousers in his hands. You can also see the light gray suit in the closet behind him. (00:31:25)

Factual error: In New York, a newspaper headline reads, MANHUNT ON FOR UN KILLER, with a smaller headline below reading "Nixon promises West will remain in Berlin". The next night Eva Marie Saint reads the crop-duster plane story in the Chicago Sun-Times. Since the Sun-Times was a morning paper and the accident occurred in the afternoon, she must have been reading the following morning's edition. But a smaller headline underneath carries the same story: "Nixon promises West will remain in Berlin"; two days later, it's old news.

Continuity mistake: While Roger and Eve converse before dinner on the train, Roger's glass mysteriously changes places several times. When shot from behind, he's holding the glass; from the front, it's on the table.

Continuity mistake: Near the beginning of the film, as Thornhill has arrived at The Plaza and is opening the door of the taxi to exit it; visible through the rear window is a red and white Ford taxi, parked behind Thornhill's taxi. Instantaneously, in the next shot taken from the sidewalk, he is shown completing his exit from the cab. Now however, there is a light colored Dodge taxi cab parked directly behind them. (00:04:20)

Continuity mistake: Cary Grant, running through Grand Central Station after fleeing from the UN Building, has brown shoes, then black, then brown.

North by Northwest mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Cary Grant writes a message on a matchbook and Eve Marie Saint reads it, the number of lines in the message changes. He writes 3 lines, she reads 4 lines. (01:58:30)

More quotes from North by Northwest

Trivia: In the scene when Cary Grant is going up the steps to the UN, Alfred Hitchcock shot it from a rug truck across the street. He wasn't allowed to shoot the front of the UN. If you look closely, you can see a security guard in the left corner.

More trivia for North by Northwest

Chosen answer: The original title for the movie was "In a Northwesterly Direction", as it was originally detailing the flight of a man from New York to Alaska, according to writer Earnest Lehman. According to Alfred Hitchcock, however, he took the title from a line in Hamlet, another work of fiction that is concerned with the slippery nature of reality. It is also worth noting that North by Northwest is not a direction on the compass at all. The nearest to it would be Northwest by North.

SexyIrishLeprechaun

More questions & answers from North by Northwest

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.