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What's Eating Gilbert Grape (1993) Poster

Goofs

Character error 

At the start Gilbert says his dad died 17 years ago but then says that his youngest sister, Ellen just turned 15. Therefore their dad could not have fathered Ellen.

Continuity 

Gilbert's hair changes length from short to long & back again several times during the movie. His hair color also changes from very red to almost brown & back again.
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At the end there is a tracking shot of the house burning down. In the foreground of this shot you will see the very same trampoline (with the red trim) that Ken Carver is jumping on earlier in the movie. In the filming process there was a scene where the Carvers give the trampoline to the Grapes which was edited out making it unclear to the audience why the trampoline is at the Grapes residence.
After Gilbert sees the husband on the trampoline outside, he puts on his jacket and he pulls down his apron, but when he's coming out of the house moments later, he pulls his apron out of his trousers.
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In Arnie's Party, from outside the house, Momma is seen looking out between two curtains. Later, from inside the house, she is looking out the window while lifting up a window blind.
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When Gilbert was driving the car to the police station so Mama could get Arnie the car was shown to be greatly leaning to the right indicating Mama's great weight, but when she got out at the police station the car doesn't rise.
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When Gilbert is lying on the ground and Becky is asking him what he wants for himself, you can see that he has perfect teeth, not the chipped bonding he displays the rest of the movie.
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In the diner, after the undertaker discusses the reality of death, Gilbert picks up his coffee cup twice between shots without having enough time to put it down.
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The first time Arnie climbs the tower, Gilbert's pickup truck is parked below although he has not driven up yet.
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When Gilbert is eating watermelon, the first couple of shots show only two seeds. Then when the camera goes back to him once again, there are a lot of seeds, yet this is supposed to be the same piece.
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The amount of ice cream on Gilbert's face changes between shots.
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When eating breakfast in the diner, the bowls of cereal are alternately full/empty between shots.
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When Gilbert and Becky load her groceries in the rain they load them in the back of the truck under a tarp on the passenger side. When they arrive at the campsite they unload them from the driver's side.
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While Becky and Gilbert are talking, she's wet up to her chest, but her hair is dry. When Gilbert walks into the water towards Becky, her hair is wet for just a moment, then in the next shot it's dry again.
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In the shot where Gilbert chases Arnie outside after he is caught eating the cake in the refrigerator, the the sky is completely black, but when Gilbert carries Arnie upstairs and into the bathroom, the sky outside is a deep blue, suggesting the sun is still setting.
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When Gilbert first spots Arnie climbing the water tower, Betty Carver's house, the tower does not have any writing on it - it is plain silver. When their friend Bob arrives on the scene and looks up, the town name of Endora can be seen on it.
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The total changes on the cash register in the grocery store scene between Gilbert and Betty even though he does not enter any items during their conversation.
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When the family go to find Arnie (after Gilbert hit him) they are at Becky's trailer. It is clearly very dark when they set out to find Arnie. In all the shots of Gilbert, the sky is dark, but in the shots of Arnie/Becky the sky is light as though it is dawn.
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The position of the Burger Barn cup in Arnie's hand when he is drinking his shake. First the logo is seen. In the next shot it is turned away.
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The bruises on Arnie's face change from scene to scene.
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When Gilbert and Becky hug goodbye before she leaves, the relative positions of their arms alternates between shots.
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When Becky's grandmother is explaining to the mechanic about the worn needle valve, they are both at the back of the vehicle. When the shot opens up for the view of the water tower, she is talking over the shot, but she is on her own while the mechanic is rolling a tyre around the vehicle.
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When Gilbert first shows Becky his house, the sun is setting behind them. When the shot switches to show the house from their point of view, the sun is setting behind the house. Since they are facing the house, it is impossible for the sun to be behind both simultaneously.
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When Gilbert and Becky kiss in the trailer, her head is tilted to the right; between shots it becomes tilted to the left
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As Arnie climbs down from water tower for the first time in the movie, looking down on the crowd below, we see his sneaker fall and hit the ground. A few seconds later, it falls again and lands in front of Gilbert.
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After Arnie climbs down from the water tower the first time, the policemen give him a warning and Arnie does the thing with his finger against his nose. His hand then jumps from his face, down to his side and back again between shots.
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Crew or equipment visible 

When the mother comes out of the jailhouse a bounce card (light reflector) is visible.
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Errors in geography 

When Gilbert is looking at Becky through the grocery store shelves, you can see six or seven loaves of different varieties of Mrs Baird's bread, which is a Texas (not Iowa) bakery.
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At the beginning of the movie you can see the reflection in the "ENDora OF THE LINE drugs" store window of a blue and white Manor (Texas) Police Car as it drives by.
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Revealing mistakes 

When Gilbert finds Arnie in the bath and takes him out, you can see a towel around Arnie's waist.

Spoilers 

The goof items below may give away important plot points.

Continuity 

During the fire, Amy and Ellen are first standing well away from the house, back across the gravel driveway. Next they are sitting amidst the furniture in the yard, much closer to the house. Next we can see the back of the furniture but no Amy and Ellen.
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Revealing mistakes 

Mama's eyes twitch as Arnie is bouncing up and down on her bed, even though she's supposed to be dead. Later, when the kids are around her in a vigil, she is very obviously breathing.
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See also

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

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