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Silver Streak (1976) Poster

(1976)

Goofs

Audio/visual unsynchronised 

When Reace fires two or three shots at Caldwell in the train corridor, the sound effect is that of a silenced gun. However, both before he shoots and after, he can be seen to be holding a long-barreled revolver with no silencer.
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When Johnson tells Hilly to sit at the diner of the train, his mouth doesn't move.
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The gun Reese uses has no silencer, but we hear "silenced" shots.
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Character error 

Bob Sweet mentions the OK Corral when he talks of arresting Devereau in Dodge City, KS. That legendary gunfight involving Wyatt Earp happened in Tombstone, AZ. Not Dodge City, KS.
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The porter claims the locomotives are not accessible from inside the train. FP7 diesels (and similar streamlined units) were equipped with access hatches in the front and rear. It is unlikely that a railroad employee who regularly works on passenger trains would not have known this.
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Continuity 

As the train enters the station after the cars have been uncoupled, it crosses all the way to the right hand side and enters the station on the last approach track, but when it cuts to the next two shots tracks even further to the right of the train are visible.
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When Rita and George buzz the sheep for the first time there is clearly only one person in the plane.
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An exasperated Chief Donaldson warns the assistant controller of an impending crash at the fictional "Central Station" in Chicago - however, in several crowd shots, a sign reading "Union Station Menswear" is plainly visible.
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When Grover applies shoe polish to George, the point of view over George's back clearly shows Grover touching George's forehead with the polish. But in the next shot showing George's face, there is no polish on his forehead.
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When Grover (dressed as a porter) comes into Roger's stateroom to serve coffee, he pulls a revolver and initially holds it in his left hand, but in a close-up it is seen in his right and then back to his left in the next medium shot.
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When Grover is crashing the stolen sheriff's car through the police barricade, long shots clearly show the stunt driver (as Grover) wearing silver-rimmed dark sunglasses. Yet, when they cut to Grover behind the wheel inside the car, he is not wearing them.
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Early in the movie, George ducks into Devereau's room for a moment to avoid the fat man coming down the hallway. However, we never see the fat man pass by before George leaves.
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After George and Grover get back on the train the second time, there is some brief gunfire. George asks Hilly, "Are you alright?" She responds with, "Yes. What about Grover?," even though he was never actually introduced to her by name.
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While the characters are supposedly hanging out the right side of the train, attempting to uncouple two cars, they are not visible in a helicopter shot showing the train entering the yard.
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When Devereau is leaning out of the locomotive and about to be beheaded, in the last shot of the engine heading toward him, you can see the two Silver Streak locomotives already passing.
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When Grover first says goodbye to George in the Police station, the buttons at the top of his shirt open and close between shots.
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When George is dealing with Sheriff Chauncey, the gun is first seen on the tv with other items, but the next time it is seen, the top of the tv is empty except for the gun.
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When in the engine cab Deveroux shoots the engineer and he falls out of the cab. But later when Deveroux is shooting at the chopper, the bottom of the engineer's shirt can be seen in the driver's seat in the cab, along with a brief silhouette of a man sitting in the cab seat.
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In the scene in which George has uncoupled the train cars, when Grover jumps, there is clear track on the other side of the train, but when George jumps there is a line of train cars on the track. In the next shot, where the camera is looking directly back to Grover, all the tracks on the right of the scene are clear.
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When George and Sweet are heading to get the Rembrandt letters, the train is shown in snow-covered scenery, yet it is summer in the rest of the shots.
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When Deveroux steps on Whiney's hands in the engine there are two other sets of tracks looking out of the engine, but when Whiney falls there are no other tracks.
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When Deveroux is hanging out the engine the cab door is obviously open but as the train is going along the cab door is closed then at the station when the people are looking at the engine the cab door is open.
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Crew or equipment visible 

As the locomotive passes through the gift shop in the station you can see a small box on the floor which explodes just before the train gets to it.
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Camera crew reflected in the windows of a train station as the train pulls away.
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Towards the end of the film, you can see a reflection of the crew pushing the train as it "leaves" the station.
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Errors in geography 

The train is shown entering "Central Station" in Chicago. By 1976, Central Station had been torn down. The station used in the movie for those scenes was Chicago and North Western Station and train-shed. All the way up to the bumping post is the far West track in the old CNW station. Great shots of the old CNW-style signals are seen as well. Also, "Rockdale" is on the old Rock Island main line to the SOUTH side of Chicago, so if they had been coming in to a Chicago Station, it should have been La Salle St. Station. The only correct Chicago 'Tower" scenes were when Jerry Jarvis is on the telephone with the cop, you can see BN railroad switchers doing station work at "Union Station" in Chicago, where the "Am Road" train should have been going.
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As George and Grover arrive in "Kansas City," a long shot of the city clearly shows the Calgary Tower, a unique and unmistakable landmark with no equivalent in Kansas City.
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The train was supposed to be traveling through the American Midwest. Filming was done in Alberta Canada and in one scene the train passes a small town with a grain elevator which is plainly marked "Alberta Wheat Pool".
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This movie is presented as being set in the United States. Towards the end of the movie, the train is about to crash into the fictional "Central Station" in Chicago. When the assistant controller, Jerry Jarvis, is running through the station looking for his boss, he stops to ask a janitor who is polishing a piece of marble clearly marked "GO Transit". GO Transit is Ontario, Canada's interregional public transit system.
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In the beginning of the movie as the train is pulling out of Los Angeles one of the city buildings in the background has a sign on it that reads "National Trust" - a company located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
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During the station evacuation scenes, signs with the word "Turbo" printed on them can be seen in the background. The United Aircraft Corporation TurboTrain never went to Chicago.
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All of the night scenes of the train show saguaro cacti, which grow only in southern Arizona, even though the train supposedly passes far to the north through Flagstaff, Albuquerque, Denver and Kansas City on its way to Chicago.
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George and Grover are supposedly driving east into Kansas City, yet the sun is seen to rise behind them.
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When George is thrown from the Silver Streak, he is supposed to be somewhere in New Mexico. As he is walking the tracks, Joshua trees can be seen in the background. Joshua trees are native to the Mohave Desert region of California and some locations in Nevada and Arizona, there are no Joshua trees in New Mexico.
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As the conventioneers Steve Weston, Harvey Atkin and Steve Weston pass the porters and the camera swings around to reveal Gene Wilder approaching, a billboard can be seen over the adjacent train on the left for CFTO-TV with the face of Tom Gibney, showing the location to be Toronto, not Los Angeles.
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As the station shots were in Toronto, when Jerry Jarvis tries to find his boss, he asks someone who is scrubbing a station sign, and if you look closely, you can see GO Transit written on the sign, a Canadian commuter rail provider.
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Factual errors 

Sweet, the government man, would not have further involved George in Sweet's plan to convict Devereau, as it is totally against FBI, NSA, CIA, etc., policies to directly involve innocent civilians in their operations, especially in life-or-death matters.
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Bob Sweet tells George Caldwell that the train will stop in Kansas City, Kansas. Trains going to or through Kansas City stop in Kansas City, Missouri, not Kansas City, Kansas.
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One shot has the train entering the station area, and it passes by a signal which turns red and begins to ring like a bell, like a grade crossing signal. Train signals do no such thing in real life.
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If a train actually did crash into a station and cause structural damage as the train did at the end,there is no way security and police in the station would have allowed people to approach the train after it stopped. Considering the possibility of the structural integrity of the building being compromised and diesel fuel in a damaged engine, they would have evacuated the station immediately.
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The morning after Prof Schreiner falls off the train outside George and Hillie's suite, the train is seen along a river and George is seen looking out the window of the third car of the eight car train but when Sweet goes on top the train to look for evidence, he only goes as far as the second car as six cars can be counted behind the car that Sweet is on.
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It's completely inconceivable that Donaldson would have given George a gun. Law enforcement would *never* give a civilian a gun.
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Miscellaneous 

When Jerry Jarvis locates his supervisor in Chicago and tells him that the Silver Streak is running without an engineer, the supervisor looks down at his watch and says that the train will arrive in four minutes. Without knowing the train's specific location at that time, and with no reason to know in advance the timetable of an out-of-control train, the supervisor would have no information with which to make that time estimate.
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Revealing mistakes 

The Silver Streak is proceeding abnormally slow, about 15 miles per hour, during the time that George and Reace are on top of the train. Presumably, this was done to protect the actors and stuntmen.
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Just after George shoots Reace with the spear gun, he ends up leaving the train by a train signal pole. When the pole swings around, the ground under George is undisturbed. In the close up, just before George drops from the signal to the ground, the ground has been disturbed where it is obvious that it has been landed on at least once before.
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Obvious stunt double when Bob climbs up to the top of the train with George to retrieve the part of the professor's clothing.
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Obvious stunt-double for Gene Wilder when his character is on top of the train.
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When Roger turns on Whiney and kicks him off the train, Whiney's stunt double can be seen when he falls.
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The train that crashes through the station wall is considerably smaller than actual scale.
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After stealing the car from the lot in Kansas City, it's obvious that the background behind George and Grover is a backdrop screen like the ones used in movies during the 1940s. The scene is clearly shot inside a studio.
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When the assistant controller asks the maintenance man where the head controller is, the maintenance man is seen polishing a sign with the words Go Transit on them. Go Transit is a Canadian company.
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During the chopper/engine shootout scenes the weather goes from mostly cloudy/overcast to a clear blue sky several times.
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When Johnson smashes out the window on the train while it's moving, no wind blows in his face.
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When George finds Grover and swerves the car, the background moves much less than what the swerving steering wheel and screeching tires convey.
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When George reacts to seeing Grover hiding in the back of the police car for the first time, he violently turns the steering wheel and yet the handcuff keys in the dash do not move.
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When Reece is shot by George with the spear gun, a filiment line is visible at the end as Reece grabs it and falls off the train.
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Spoilers 

The goof items below may give away important plot points.

Continuity 

When Devereau is leaning out of the locomotive and about to be beheaded, in the shot of his face reacting to his impending doom, you can see that there is no track next to the Silver Streak that this oncoming train is supposedly on.
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Continuity 

Before George exits the toilets at the station, he is not wearing gloves because they are still on the sink shelf and he leaves without them. When he comes to join Grover, he is now wearing the gloves and didn't have time to go back for them because the music is heard from the radio almost straight away
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Continuity 

After Devereaux is shot, the door to the engineer's cabin is open. Subsequent external shots of the engine show the door closed.
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Errors in geography 

Since Amtrack's takeover in the early 1970s, Chicago's long-distance passenger railway station is located alongside the rail line, not at the end. A runaway locomotive would merely pass by the station, not crash into it.
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Revealing mistakes 

There is clearly too much space between the passing trains for Devereaux to be hit by sticking his head out of one of them as he is shown doing.
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See also

Trivia | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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