Blockbuster films may be billion-dollar affairs these days, but no matter how big the action and spectacle may get, mistakes are bound to happen. Studios may do their very best to keep those flaws from making the final cut (or erase them entirely in post-production, or re-releases) but luckily for movie buffs, some incredible slip-ups still slip through the cracks.
In our experience, we’ve encountered errors or flaws that either aren’t mentioned enough, or simply defy explanation. The filmmakers may have thought their finished film was devoid of all but the most minor flaws, but the following entries show that fans have an eye for detail even some directors lack.
Here is our list of The 9 Biggest Movie Mistakes You Missed.
LAST SAMURAI’S SURLY STEED
The Last Samurai’s tale of 19th century Japan may rewrite several historical events and figures, but it’s actually star Tom Cruise’s horse who delivers the biggest on-screen gaff. As the film’s hero (Captain Nathan Algren) arrives to muster his samurai before battle, his horse comes to a full stop before suddenly unleashing a crushing blow to a nearby extra.
It seems the horse didn’t care for the way it was handled (the actor taking hold of the horse’s head seems to be the trigger) and chose to take its anger out on an unsuspecting samurai – a decision every viewer can now enjoy.
JURASSIC PARK VIDEO PLAYER
It’s no secret that Jurassic Park has its fair share of mistakes; continuity errors, deleted scenes of important plot points, or even props appearing onscreen. The most iconic mistake is the magical T-Rex enclosure that the dinosaur can walk out of, but becomes a sheer drop just minutes later. But one would think that a film capable of bringing dinosaurs to life would also be able to set up an actual live camera feed for programmer Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight) to communicate with before he double-crosses John Hammond.
However, when Nedry is speaking with his contact at the Isla Nublar docks (pushing up his timeline due to the impending storm), not even a slight attempt is made to conceal the fact that he and the viewer are watching a pre-recorded video, which would have ended not long after the shot.
Perhaps it’s further evidence that Nedry’s deception was a figment of his sugar-addled hacker brain? Nobody seemed to notice Dodgson either…
QUANTUM OF SOLACE’S PHANTOM SWEEPER
The entire James Bond series of films are famous for their physics-defying action and over-the-top science fiction and gadgetry, but Quantum of Solace showed it isn’t just 007 or ‘Q’ who can turn reality on its head. As star Daniel Craig tracks his prey to a sun-baked Haitian harbor, an extra playing a background maintenance worker does his best to act natural – and fails miserably.
Trying not to fill the air (and shot) with clouds of dust or sand is understandable, but how this floating-broom-pantomime made it into the finished film is beyond us.
JAMES BOND, BOAT SORCERER?
An eye-catching extra is one thing, but Quantum of Solace also breaks the cardinal rule of James Bond stunts: audiences will accept the silly or fantastic, so long as the filmmakers pretend that it’s taken seriously. During the high speed boat chase that follows James’ run-in with the phantom sweeper, the super-spy cuts the power, causing the pursuing boat to leapfrog onto the back of his own.
Without a weapon, James grabs a nearby grappling hook and tosses it over into his enemies’ inflatable boat. The rope spools out, the hook takes hold, and the bad guys are sent flying into the air, ending the chase.
Unfortunately, the hook was never actually attached to anything – there’s no reason for the rope to be pulled out of the boat in the first place. No explanation for what actually happened is given, implying the filmmakers thought audiences wouldn’t care (and considering the rest of the film, few did).
The visuals, violence, and performances in Ridley Scott’s Gladiator helped bring the swords-and-sandal genre into a whole new generation, but it wasn’t without a few rough spots. Continuity errors are to be expected in massive fight scenes and stunts, but none are as obvious or unbelievable as the one pictured above.
Hero Maximus (Russell Crowe) begins his journey from slave to revolutionary by uniting the gladiator forces during a re-enactment of the Battle of Carthage. Their numbers save them, but when a chariot flips on its side, a piece of the rigging falls loose to reveal – for an unnecessary amount of time – the entire pressurized tank used to make the stunt possible. A quick cut would’ve solved the problem, but as it stands, it’s a mistake wholly out of place in such an award-winning drama.
TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF TELEPORTATION
Director Michael Bay may have his critics, but no one is more responsible than he for the slick action now downright expected in a summer blockbuster – with the Transformers series his most successful to date. But in the storm of giant alien robots fighting to destroy the Earth, some smaller mistakes managed to slip through – along with one that defies any explanation.
One of the strangest can be seen during Transformers: Age of Extinction‘s closing fight, as star Mark Wahlberg runs to the aid of Optimus Prime, drawing fire in the process. A brick wall takes the brunt of the villain’s attack – along with a completely unknown man suddenly appearing at Wahlberg’s side. Whether a member of the crew or a cast member, his instant arrival is a total mystery.
THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, HENCHMEN FALL
The final chapter of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy threw more than a few curveballs at fans, including Catwoman’s shift from villain to heroine. But when Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle first join forces for a rooftop fistfight in The Dark Knight Rises, their skills prove too much for one background henchman, who drops to the ground without being touched.
It’s clearly a case of stunt team members missing their mark, but it’s hard to believe that it couldn’t have been caught and attempted again. Even more surprisingly, it’s not the only such error in the film. When Batman emerges to save Gotham from the brink in the film’s final act, yet another henchman decides that hitting the deck without reason is the best course of action.
BATMAN BEGINS, COP CLONES
Extras can occasionally make their presence too well-known, but doing too well a job can also lead to some problems. Take, for instance, one Gotham City police officer seen in Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins. No fan will forget the first time Bruce Wayne took his Tumbler to the streets, but some might not have noticed one mindboggling mistake contained in the sequence.
Moments before Batman sends the Tumbler jumping from the top of a parking structure, a police officer demands that he get out of his vehicle. Just a minute later, that same police officer is shown across town demanding a description of Batman’s wheels. Apparently, he was just too good an actor to waste on ONE gag.
STORMTROOPERS CLUMSINESS IS GENETIC?
Every film buff knows that the release of Star Wars: A New Hope changed the world, not only for its box office success but also the shot of a clumsy stormtrooper slamming his head into a Death Star doorway that instantly became the stuff of legend.
Rather than fixing the mistake, director George Lucas called out the gaff in later re-releases, adding a sound effect and line of dialogue (“see to him”). But it didn’t stop there: the clumsiness was carried over to the prequel Attack of the Clones, where Jango Fett – the man from whom the Clone Troopers were copied – was shown to be just as clumsy. As Lucas explained in the film’s DVD commentary:
“I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be funny if that’s a trait that Jango has?’ When he puts his helmet on he can’t really see that well, so he’s constantly bumping his head – and that trait gets cloned into all the stormtroopers.”