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Raise the Titanic (1980) Poster

Goofs

Anachronisms 

In the still photo montage that opens the movie prior to the main titles, a photo supposedly depicting the fictional cornet player "Graham Farley" (there was no brass in the Titanic's small string band) is actually from a 1917 publicity shot of The Original Dixieland Jass[sic] Band featuring cornetist Dominic "Nick" LaRocca.
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Character error 

During the interview with John Bigalow (Alec Guinness), Bigalow makes the statement; "She was one of a kind." Speaking emotionally this could be true, but it is factually incorrect, as one of the ship's officers and an employee of the White Star Line would have known. The Titanic was the second in what is called the Olympic class of ships. She was preceded in construction by the Olympic (a slightly smaller half-sister ship), and followed by the Gigantic (a sister ship). The Gigantic was renamed as the Britannic following the loss of the Titanic.
Towards the end of the film, Seagram calls the Sicilian Defense System the "Caesarian Defense System."
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Continuity 

When Dana Archibald runs into Pitt on the street, the traffic behind her alternates between flowing and stopped.
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When Deep Quest gets trapped in the Titanic's skylight, the other submarine changes from the Sea Cliff to the Turtle and back.
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Twice when the explosive probes are placed and armed, the probe being placed is a completely different number than the one armed.
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When Pitt brings forward raising the Titanic, he says the explosive charges will be detonated eight seconds apart. The explosions are random, except the last two, which occur less than a second apart.
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Pitt has just come from a meeting where the secrecy of the mission has been stressed, and the decision is clearly stated that no outsiders should learn about the project. But John Bigalow seems to already know before the news is leaked, and asks Pitt to put back the Titanic's pennant when the ship is raised.
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Factual errors 

The grave at Southby says April 3, 1913. The Titanic sank in 1912.
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When Capt. Prevlov flies over and boards the Titanic, he arrives in a Bell "Huey" UH-1H painted drab olive with the Red Communist Star on the side. The Soviet Navy would not use US helicopters.
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When the team examines the horn retrieved from the wreck, they note that the instrument was presented to its owner after "three years service on the Olympic". The RMS Olympic, the Titanic's sister ship, was launched in 1910 and entered service in 1911. No one could've served 3 years on it by 1912, when the Titanic sank.
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In the film, the Titanic is towed out to sea by harbor tugs, not ocean tugs. The towing methods are meant for harbors and other relatively calm waters, and would be very dangerous at sea.
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Bigalow tells Pitt the byzanium was carried in "cargo hold number nine," and that Brewster had forced Bigalow to take him there. The Titanic had only two numbered cargo holds, plus the mail hold.
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In the film, the Titanic's second funnel is missing. Though no one knew at the time that the ship had lost all 4 funnels when it sank, it was generally known that the first (forward) funnel, not the second one, had toppled over and detached from the ship during the sinking.
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Sandecker tells Pitt that they "got all the stuff from the White Star Line; engineering drawings and a complete structural design for the Titanic." White Star Line merged with Cunard Line in 1934, becoming Cunard White Star, Ltd. By the end of 1949, Cunard acquired the rest of White Star's assets, and changed its name back to Cunard. No ship has flown the White Star flag since 1968. Furthermore, at the time of the film's production the blueprints and drawings for the Olympic and Titanic were believed to have been destroyed when the Luftwaffe bombed the Belfast shipyards during WWII. A surviving set of structural blueprints for the Olympic class was discovered in the late 1990s.
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Incorrectly regarded as goofs 

When the Titanic sank, its masts and funnels were ripped off and the Grand Staircase's dome imploded. The damage was discovered in 1985, when the wreck was found. It was unknown when the film was released in 1980, and when the novel was published in 1976.
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The Titanic broke in two as it sank, and the stern section suffered major structural damage, perhaps due to implosion from water pressure. However, those facts were only discovered when the ship's remains were found in 1985. Eyewitness testimony soon after the sinking was conflicting. In 1980, it was generally accepted that the Titanic sank intact.

Revealing mistakes 

Bigalow orders a pink gin, which is prepared by warming a brandy glass with your hands, adding a few drops of Angostura Bitters, shaking them out, then adding a single or double optic measure of gin. The glass would never be so full or so richly colored.
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Spoilers 

The goof item below may give away important plot points.

Factual errors 

When the Starfish accidentally exceeds the 12,000-foot depth limit, it takes several minutes to leak, flood, and implode. A submersible that sprung a leak at that depth and pressure (>600psi) would implode in seconds. Also, such a blast, having the effect of a depth charge, would have destroyed or at least severely damaged the other submersible, which would have to be very close (less that 6 feet) to get a visual contact at that depth. Yet, her occupants do not feel anything.
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See also

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

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