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Cold Mountain (2003) Poster

(2003)

Goofs

Revealing mistakes 

When Inman is walking by the lake, you can see his tracks from previous takes.
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Anachronisms 

During the battle scene, it appears that some of the American flags being carried by the Union soldiers are the "50 star" type flags. The American flag with 50 stars was not used until at least 1960, after Hawaii was made a state.
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The musicians sing the song "Sittin' on Top of the World." which is from 1930.
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Before the Civil War even begins (1861), Ada asks Inman if he "had a picture made ... a tintype." The word tintype did not come into use until 1864. Before the War, these pictures were known as ferrotypes or ambrotypes.
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Audio/visual unsynchronised 

The congregation is singing loudly at the church service when news of secession comes. The congregation begins to drift outside, leaving just a few members seated in the pews; however the volume of the singing does not diminish.
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Character error 

At the end of the scene outside of the church when the men are celebrating "we have a war," Teague tells the crowd that he is the Captain of the Home Guard for Avery County. However, Avery County was not established until 1911 - it was the last county created by North Carolina. The correct location for Cold Mountain is Haywood County, which did exist in 1861.
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Continuity 

When they first encounter the dead bull in the creek, the bull is lying diagonally with its front end out in the middle of the creek and its rump on or next to the bank. When Inman steps over the bull to begin sawing it, it is lying completely in the middle of the creek, parallel to the bank.
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When Ada is turkey hunting and meets Inman, she fires the right-hand barrel of her double barrelled shot-gun to kill a turkey. Without reloading, she then fires the same barrel in an attempt to frighten Inman away.
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When Ada is leaving the cabin to go "look for some food", her hair is in two braids. When she comes back after shooting the turkey and finding Inman, her hair is in a ponytail.
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The horse behind Ada Monroe and Ruby Thewes changes position several times during the fence building scene.
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Ruby Thewes' cloth strips that are used as chin straps change position while she is introducing herself to Ada Monroe on the porch. They go from on her left breast, to the middle of her chest, to over her shoulder in the close up shots.
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When Ada arrives with her piano tied by ropes to the wagon, she stops by Sally Swanger's home and she is sitting directly up against the piano with little to no space between her back and the piano. In the next shot as she passes Inman plowing the field she is turned around playing the piano and there is now space enough for her legs (and dress) between her and the piano. Since the piano was tied to the wagon, it is unlikely that they untied the piano to move it backwards in order to make a space for her legs so she could face/play the piano.
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Crew or equipment visible 

On the DVD version at least, When Ada plays her piano as she rides past Inman "plowing the top field", you can see a wrangler's hand at the edge of the screen bringing his plow horse to a halt.
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Errors in geography 

The Appalachian Mountains of the Eastern United States have no jagged peaks. The mountains shown are Romanian.
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An insert of a "crow" is shown, sitting on a fencepost. It's a grey-and-black Hooded Crow (Corvus corone corvix), common in Eastern Europe (where the film was shot), but unheard of in the southern US (where the story is set).
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Factual errors 

Ada comments about not smiling in her photo; in the 19th century (and well into the 20th) it was uncommon to smile for any portrait.
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Many of the Confederate/Southern characters in the film, such as Teague's men and Sara, use Spencer 1860 carbines. Although they are not anachronistic, it would have been highly unlikely that they could have possessed these carbines, as they were just being issued to Union cavalrymen and the South could not produce them.

Although it is possible for Teague's men to have captured them or been given captured weapons, it is still rather unlikely as they are merely militiamen, and would have had to use their own weapons, since the best ones were being given to the front line units. It is even more unlikely for Sara to have one as well, since she is only a civilian.
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After the mine has been laid under the Confederate trenches, the Union soldiers are seen lying on the ground in their ranks waiting to charge after the mine goes off. In reality the Union troops waited in their trenches, since (1) there was no open ground where they could all have lain in formation, (2) they would have been hit by debris from the explosion, and (3) the Confederates would have seen them getting out and lying in wait.
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In the opening battle scene, the famous Crater at Petersburg is depicted as much wider and deeper than it actually was.
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The mine under the Petersburg defenses was set off well over an hour before dawn, at 4:44 am (about an hour later than planned), yet in the film it is full daylight when it goes off.
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Revealing mistakes 

When the Yankees are charging after exploding the breastworks at Petersburg, a soldier's obviously rubber bayonet can be seen flopping as he runs.
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When Inman dies, his wig fabric can be easily seen.
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At :26 when Inman and Ada enter the church to wrangle the dove, the bird retrieves a seed reward after hopping into Inman's (Law) hand.
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When Inman regains consciousness, chained to the other prisoners who are dead, the hand of the body next to him, which he moves from his neck, moves on its own after he places it on the ground.
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Spoilers

The goof item below may give away important plot points.

Continuity 

At the end of the movie, where Ada is skinning a sheep to fit the skin over an orphaned lamb, her hands are covered with blood and holding a knife. Yet, when she stands up and takes her daughter's hand, there is no knife and her hands are as clean as can be.
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See also

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

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