tcmfan43

14th May 2015

The Hustler (1961)

Continuity mistake: When Newman first encounters Laurie at the diner in the bus station, in a wide shot we see all the empty tables behind her. He sits down and their conversation is shot in medium close-ups. In all of Laurie's shots, a man is now visible three or four tables behind her, flipping through a newspaper. When the conversation ends, we go to a wide shot, and, the guy has vanished. About ten minutes later, next day in the time line (I think), another scene in the same diner. Newman is already seated as Laurie walks in. She walks past empty tables to Newman. A few shots later, suddenly, in the background, the guy is back at his table with his newspaper! As they walk out the guy is gone again. It's the same guy at the same table appearing/disappearing in two scenes.

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Continuity mistake: Cagney and Ward Bond have a shootout while hiding at the opposite ends of the same moving boxcar. Early in the shooting sequence, Bond fires his gun frame right towards Cagney at the far end of the car and the muzzle flash from the blank round incidentally burns the surface of the wooden trim at the corner of the car. It is quite a large distinctive shaped burn, readily visible on the surface of the car occupying the right side of the frame. However the burn is also visible in all of Cagney's camera shots, still on the car in the right side of the frame, now behind Cagney as he fires frame left. Obviously, the two actors were photographed each taking all of their gun-shots in two sequences, using the space between the same two cars, one firing left, the other firing right. No camera move. Minimal lighting change.

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Continuity mistake: When Cagney jumps onto the train in a wide shot, the steel car at his back is visibly taller than the wooden car he is facing. In the following close-up, the steel car has morphed into a shorter wooden car, same height as the other.

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Factual error: When Cagney surprises Ward Bond in a saloon, they run out the back and across a rail freight yard. They jump onto boxcars of a slow moving train. Bond jumps up between two older wooden-bodied boxcars, A and B. Cagney, in pursuit, jumps up between cars B and C. In the wide shots, car C is seen to be a steel-bodied boxcar built at the earliest in the late 1930's. Events in the movie show the time-line to be set in September, 1893.

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