Cinema isn’t just about the story itself or the performances delivered by the actors and actresses. It also isn’t just about the lighting or the musical score. More often than not, the sets, the props, and even the clothes that actors wear can significantly influence how the movie might be received. From props used for the wrong time period, misappropriated cultural details, wrong costumes, or issues with continuity—there’s no shortage of filming blunders that you can find. With such huge investments put into the creation of movies, we’re surprised that these even got past the editing room! Here are our favorites:
This 2004 film was a success in the box-office but got a lukewarm reception when it came to the critics. Inspired by Homer’s epic, Iliad, there were high expectations long before it was even in the theatres. Given the period in which it was set—everything had to be grand in scale, yet grounded in realism. This is where the movie missed the mark; going so far as featuring a luxurious pink parasol in one scene, which didn’t really exist in Ancient Greece at the time. One need not have a degree to get this right, a simple online search would have cleared it up.
A film that is loved globally and across different generations, Pulp Fiction is an absolute classic. Some fans of the director and the movie might even go so far as call it perfect—but it isn’t without its flaws. In this case, it’s a timing fluke that might put off a few people. In one of the film’s most memorable scenes, you’ll notice that even before the bullets hit anything, the wall behind our Jules and Vincent were already riddled in holes. It’s not that easy to spot unless you already know what to look for, so to their credit—this one’s forgivable.
BACK TO THE FUTURE
When dealing with time travel in any movie, a lot of things can easily go wrong. Much research is needed in order to get accurate details. Whilst Back To The Future is an iconic piece of cinema, it still “sinned” when it came to the time dilemma. Remember that scene during prom where Marty performed a guitar solo? Sure, it was electrifying—but the guitar he was using shouldn’t even exist in that time period. The Gibson ES-345 wasn’t made until 1958, while the movie was set in 1955. Nevertheless, the film was so successful it made more than double the investment money.
One of the most notable things about Julia Roberts, as an actress, is her refusal to do nude scenes in movies. It has been this way since she started, so wardrobe malfunction is pretty terrible—if looked at from that perspective. There was a shot of her character, Vivian, wearing a thin gown that’s about as close to nudity as one can get. Given her history, it’s safe to assume that this was not part of the script. After this scene, one of her breasts got exposed, too. We have to give her credit for turning that faux-pas into a career-launcher, though.
SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN
Back when the internet wasn’t as easily accessible as it is now, doing research for films would have been a particularly tedious task—even if you were experienced. For this iconic movie, very few things can be considered a flaw, but there is one detail that many wardrobe historians would always frown upon. It would be that pink dress, worn by Debbie Reynolds while portraying Kathy Selden, which didn’t fit in the 1920s at all. Luckily, it didn’t affect her stellar performance. We should all be grateful that we can even take online classes to learn about fashion history these days!
A true American classic, this film has reached cult status since it was first released. Like the others on this list, it is still beloved by today’s generation of moviegoers and subject to their scrutiny as well. Few can fault this film, but for the discerning, one scene where Forrest is finally reunited with Jenny is one they probably wish they could reshoot. You’ll notice that in the background there’s an iron set upright on an ironing board—within the next moment it is shown lying flat. Thankfully, it’s just a minor continuity issue that doesn’t really affect the film’s value to any degree.
It can be considered one of the most ambitious film projects ever; the film had a huge budget to work with, one of the greatest film directors at the helm, a stellar cast of actors, and a team of experts making sure that everything is perfect. But even professionals can experience lapses—in this case, it’s a switch-up when it comes to Rose Dawson’s beauty mark. First, it was on the left, but somehow it got moved to the right after some time. Looks like money management isn’t the only thing they had to worry about; someone should have kept an eye on Rose’s mole, too.
I DREAM OF JEANNIE
The story of one adorable genie and her mortal husband is one that has fascinated audiences and made fans laugh during the 1960s. The show made use of practical effects to portray “magic”, but it doesn’t always work out as planned. There’s that one episode where Jeannie had scenes with her evil twin—which meant that Barbara Eden had to appear onscreen for both characters, simultaneously. The team did use a stand-in, but in one scene, the magic is revealed when the double’s face appears in full view. It just goes to show the degree of improvement that special effects have gone through within the last few decades!
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
Set during biblical times, this movie took plenty of liberties when it comes to wardrobe. Just take their use of lacy underwire bras for example. This wouldn’t have been too bad had it not been visible underneath the actress’ dress! Starring as Nefretiri, Anne Baxter’s beauty was only highlighted further by the vivid blue of her dress. Unfortunately, such a color would have been an impossible feat during those times—since commercial dyes didn’t really exist unlike in the present. Still, we have to give this movie credit for creating some truly memorable set pieces and beautiful costumes despite not being fully accurate.
RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK
More often than not, film extras fade into the background of a scene. This is how it should be, after all. They are meant to help create the mood or atmosphere, helping establish the place and situation our main characters are in. For this particular faux-pas, however, the extra stands out because of how out of place they appear. The film is set in 1936 and whilst everyone else is wearing appropriate garb, you have one guy just hanging out in his shirt and jeans. We’ll give this guy credit—he makes for a great Easter egg that film lovers would enjoy trying to find.