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The Big Red One (1980) Poster

Goofs

Anachronisms 

In the opening scene, which takes place in November 1918, the Sergeant shows another soldier the shoulder insignia he has designed and says it represents the "1st Infantry Dvision." The 1st Division was not called the 1st Infantry Division until May 1942.
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Scenes set in Sicily show a modern Italian tricolor adopted for the Republic of Italy in 1948. During the war the flag would have been the Kingdom of Italy flag with the same tricolor but a House of Savoy emblem in the white field.
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Audio/visual unsynchronised 

When the war correspondent is filming the soldiers, you can hear the sound of the camera motor, but the hand cranks on the reels are not moving.
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Continuity 

In the ambush scene, with the German hiding behind the cross, the sun is shining on the cross and the German's face. However, in the same sequence the cross casts a shadow across the field in the opposite direction to the first scene.
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In the opening scene (WWI) in the bunker, the officer's shaving cream covers his lip and his chin, then his chin only, then back to his lip and his chin.
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Griff's dog tags suddenly change positions when he is drawing on the back of the poster.
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The position of Griff's hands on his rifle change while he waits in line.
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The tree branch moved by Sarge as he looks for the SP gun changes.
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When Sarge is looking for the SP gun, his face is drenched with sweat, but dry when approaching the gun.
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When the machine gun is firing from the tank, a truck is visible and is nearby to the tank. From the view of the cross, there is no truck at the scene.
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Sarge carries a boy and lays him on a bed. The shirt changes positions.
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Crew or equipment visible 

Camera shadow is visible on the backs of the American soldiers as they rush to greet the French in North Africa.
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Factual errors 

The German Tiger tanks in this movie are actually Israeli M51HV tanks modified from American-built M4A1 Shermans. The Israeli tank crewmen are wearing modern tanker helmets with microphones. In the one winter scene from the reconstructed version the German tank is an Israeli M50 converted from an M4 Sherman and here the tank commander is in a German uniform.
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During the WW1 scene between the Sergeant and the officer in the dug-out, the Sergeant learns that the armistice had been signed 4 hours previously at 1100hrs, November 11, 1918. While talking with the officer, the sergeant is cutting a piece of red cloth in the shape of a number '1' which he says he will submit as a proposed insignia for the division. However the shoulder sleeve insignia for the 1st Division consisting of a red number "1" was already approved on 31 Oct 1918.
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1st Infantry Division on 11th November 1918 held the line along Meuse river, near the town Mouzon (that were the final stages of Meuse-Argonne offensive, and whole war altogether); in the movie, when sergeant and his team approach an ambush by the old cross, we see that this is the spot from the first scene, the last day of the WWI. And on the memorial ("But the names are the same...") it reads "Killed in action - Soissons". Big Red One actually did fight near Soissons, but that was during the so-called Second Battle of the Marne, July to first week of August 1918.
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During the combat in Africa at one point at least one German is seen wearing 'Flecktarn' pattern camouflage. Though spread through German units in Europe, particularly the SS, the pattern was never issued to members of the Afrika Korps.
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Miscellaneous 

When the sergeant and his unit are in Sicily, they walk in front of a wall with the portrait of Mussolini and a sentence in big capital letters written in Italian. The writing is incorrect. It reads "Se avanzo, Se guitmi! Se indietreggio, uccidetemi! Se muoiu, vendicatemi! Mussolini". It should be "Se avanzo, Seguitemi! Se indietreggio, uccidetemi! Se muoio, vendicatemi! Mussolini". It means "If I move forward, follow me! If I move back, kill me! If I die, avenge me!"
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Incorrectly regarded as goofs 

In the crematorium scene Griff doesn't fire 18 rounds as often thought. He fires 8, then if you listen closely, the seventh noise is a clip ejected, and the eighth is the sound of a new clip being inserted. He then fires another 8, which is correct.
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Revealing mistakes 

When the troops land on the beach in North Africa, there are no troop transports anywhere around. The same revealing mistake is repeated on the D-Day landings.
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The fire rate of MP40 submachine gun appears very high, although in reality it's quite low.
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During the battle at the cross the Sergeant is firing the tank machine gun. From the front the restricter, a metal plug with a small hole in it used to permit machine guns to fire blanks, is clearly visible in the muzzle.
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See also

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

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