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Legends of the Fall (1994) Poster

Goofs

Continuity 

Susannah and Tristan's hair when she meets Tristan in the garden when he returns.
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Jump to: Anachronisms (2) | Continuity (24) | Crew or equipment visible (1) | Factual errors (1) | Miscellaneous (3) | Revealing mistakes (1) | Spoilers (3)

Anachronisms 

Tristan's bare upper left arm is shown in a scene which displays the distinctive dime sized scar of a smallpox inoculation. This scar is common to those of us (including Brad Pitt) living through the 1960s-'70s, but not for Tristan in the 1910s-20s.
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In some shots, the log house used in the movie has a shiny modern metal roof, complete with snow-guards to slow the slide-off of snow. In other shots, or from other angles, the roof is comprised of rustic looking wooden boards.
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Continuity 

In the beginning of the movie, when young Tristan gets clawed by the bear, the bear cuts him on his arm. But when his father comes to look at the wound, the cut is on his ribs.
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When Tristan and his family meet Alfred and Susannah at the fair, Isabel hands the baby over to Susannah. In the next shot, the baby is back in Isabel's arms.
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Blood on Samuel's left cheek as he dies.
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Susannah's hair when she is brushing it and talking to Alfred.
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During the night of the war, Samuel's cheek was scratched. The next morning him and Tristan were pulled down to a trench, still bearing the scratch on his cheek. Later on that day, he looks at Susannah's picture, without a wound on his cheek. Back at the camp, his scratch appears again.
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When Colonel Ludlow begins writing "Am happy" on the small chalk board, the letters "Am" are initially very large and straight. In the next shot, they are much smaller and angled upward.
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Near the end, the position of the dead thugs moves between shots.
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Juxtaposition of heads when Tristan and Samuel hug after making it back to the foxhole.
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Tristan's hand as he watches Samuel gasp for breath.
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When Tristan is preparing his horse to leave, after almost assaulting Susannah with his knife, he is shown tying a blanket to his saddle. As the shot changes from Tristan to Susannah's perspective, Tristan's hand positions switch constantly, from the top of the blanket to the bottom.
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When Tristan and his family see Alfred and Susannah at the fair, Isabel's baby is alternately asleep and awake between shots.
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During infamous Tristan and Susannah's hug (after the boys announce they are going to the war), Tristan's lips move from Susannah's cheek to her forehead. Then camera angle changes, and his lips are again at her cheek's level.
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After Samuel tells his father that he's going to fight in the war, there is a shot of him where Alfred's shoulder is barely visible behind him. When he runs to the stairs to talk to Susannah there is a closeup of him. Even though he has moved about five feet he is still in the same position as earlier in the closeup, and Alfred's shoulder is still visible.
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The color of the letter from Tristan changes from yellow to white to yellow.
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When Samuel and Susannah are playing tennis early in the movie, as Tristan comes towards them on his horse the weather is clearly hazy. There is then a quick shot of Pet smoking a pipe which shows a perfectly clear blue midday sky. In the next shot of a visible sky showing Tristan with a windmill in the background, it's overcast or a completely different time of day again.
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As the boys get ready to head for war, William Ludlow reads a letter sent to his wife. The letter notes the boys departed in October. Yet, the small deciduous trees visible still have leaves that are green. By mid-October in Montana, those leaves would have changed color and likely fallen off.
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At the beginning, the boys are running through the brush with buckets on their heads, fighting with swords. They pass behind some leaves for a split second, and the buckets are gone.
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When Isabel Two tries on the ring Tristan brings her from Crete, it switches from her fourth to her fifth finger in too short a time for her to have moved it.
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During young Tristan's clawing from the bear, the bear is striking at him with his right paw repeatedly. When Tristan stabs at the bear and severs his toe, it is his left toe that is cut off.
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When the three sons leave to go to war Decker and Pet switch positions between shots.
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The thick greenish-yellow clouds of mustard gas disappear behind Samuel when the German soldiers arrive and set up their machine gun.
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O'Banion draws his pistol twice when stalking Tristan in the barn.
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Disappearing blood on O'Banion's brother's cheek.
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The position of Susannah's hands on the bars as she talks to Tristan in the jail cell.
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Crew or equipment visible 

Just as the animal/bear stage begins to takes over Tristan, he rides to Samuel's grave and as he leaves, an orange cone is visible. It's kicked up by Tristan's horse.
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Factual errors 

In the scene on the street where the two Ludlow families meet, Alfred is wearing medals for his service in the Great War. As he served with his brothers in the Canadian Forces from 1914-15 he should be eligible for three medals - 1914-1915 Star, British War Medal and the Victory Medal (1914-1918) - comprising one star and two discs. The medals he wears all appear to be discs and the colors of the ribbons do not appear to match the official colors of the medals named. Disc medals were awarded for bravery but only to enlisted men and as he was an officer he would not have received such. Note that in wearing such foreign decorations he is unlikely to have breached the Constitution as he received these awards whilst serving in the Canadian Army and is not wearing them on a US uniform.
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Miscellaneous 

Shot is mirror image just after Alfred tells Tristan to marry Susannah.
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The language was incorrect for 1914-1920. The "F-word" was not in common use. Nor was the term "screw" as in "getting screwed" part of the vernacular in that period.
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In the final scene when Tristan fights the bear narration by One Stab says that Tristan died in the Moon When the Trees Pop. That would be late January or February. The leaves on the tree show it to be September or early October.
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Revealing mistakes 

During the war scenes, an "Air Ram" is visible (a pneumatic device for throwing a person up into the air, to simulate an explosion).
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Spoilers

The goof items below may give away important plot points.

Anachronisms 

The gun the Julia Ormand character uses to shoot herself is a Smith&Wesson "Chief's Special" which wouldn't be manufactured until 1950 at the earliest.
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Right after Tristan's wife is killed by the stray bullet, Tristan is screaming on the ground. During this, you can see a lot of dental work (metal crowns) in Brad Pitt's mouth. This type of dental work would not be possible during the early 1900s.

Revealing mistakes 

When Sheriff Tynert is hit by a shotgun blast, the slow motion photography reveals that the squib explodes before the actor was ready.
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See also

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

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