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The Italian Job (2003) Poster

Goofs

Anachronisms 

The three Minis' license plate numbers begin with a "2". This means they had to have been issued before 1989. The Minis were later than this vintage.
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Audio/visual unsynchronised 

When Steve is being dragged away by the Ukranians you hear him plead "Come on Charlie!" but his mouth never moves.
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When Skinny Pete says "Mother Freakin' Ukranians" his mouth clearly says "Fucking".
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The motorcycles used in the chase scene are BMWR1100RT's, which are 2 cylinder motorcycles. The engine noise heard from them is that of a 4 cylinder sport bike, a very different sound than a 2 cylinder sport-touring bike.
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When Lyle arrives to the first meeting with Stella, he is riding a yellow Ducati 748 superbike. The engine note heard is of a generic inline-four cylinder sport bike, which sounds nothing like the Ducati desmo L-twin in the 748.
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Character error 

It's stated by Mashkov that "he will be on Train 59 to New Orleans." Train 59 is called "The City of New Orleans" and leaves directly from Chicago to New Orleans. It doesn't go anywhere near Los Angeles. The only train from LA to New Orleans is Train #2, the Sunset Limited.
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Continuity 

After Stella has successfully opened the safe in the metro, the drill that was stuck in the safe's door after the glass cracked disappears.
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When Steve is driving the Bronco through the train yard, his mustache is missing.
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Positioning of the light rail train changes from when the last Mini passes in front of it, in the tunnel, in comparison to when Lyle stops the train.
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When the three Minis jump in front of the underground train you can see the last Mini hit the front of the train with the rear bumper and the whole lot goes through the tunnel. But in the next shot Napster stops the train and it stops just in front of the tunnel to block it.
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After Stella parallel parks her red vintage Mini Cooper while driving at full speed, we see through her windshield the vehicle in front of her 5 to 10 feet away. After she gets out her car is shown to be parked only 2 or 3 feet away. The space shown when she is driving is clearly much bigger than in the side shot. When driving like that you would not be able to park a car that tightly.
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When the crew meet to get phones and IDs, Lyle rides up shakily on a yellow motorcycle and drops it to the right of the red Mini, with the front wheel pointed roughly at the right side of the Mini. In the shot showing them departing, however, the motorcycle is shown on the foreground to the left of the red Mini, and it is pointing away from the Mini.
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The amount of blood in Steve's mouth after Charlie decks him in the café changes inconsistently between shots.
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When the armoured truck comes crashing into the tunnel, the minis get covered in dust. By the time they drive off they are nice and shiny again.
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When the Minis are about to cut in front of the train, whenever we view the event through Napster's screen there is a railing at the end of the platform (that would make it impossible for them to pull around). Whenever we are shown "live shots", the railing is gone and the position of the train has changed.
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The license plate changes on the blue Mini between scenes. Mostly the plate is 2SAQ321, but when the helicopter is chasing, the plate reads 2SBI658 when they pass in front of the hotel.
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When the mini's are being chased in the pipe, one of the men on motorbikes shoots and the bullet cracks Left-Ear's window, but later on, you see that the glass is intact.
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When the team is in the warehouse and discovers Steve is fleeing with the gold, the basketball that Charlie and Lyle are playing with jumps around improbably between shots.
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When the Cadillac pulls up in the scrap yard to pick up Mashkov, at first it is a black Cadillac Seville. There is a cutaway to some equipment in the yard, and in the next shot of the front of the car pulling up next to Mashkov, it is now a Cadillac CTS.
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After the Minis fly out of the storm drain, Handsome Rob turns around and tells Left Ear to open his door, causing the motorcyclist to flip over the door. When the door is opened, the window is clearly up and in one piece, but is not there when the motorcyclist hits it and it is still intact and rolled up in later shots.
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Towards the end of the movie when Steve is in the helicopter chasing Charlie in a Mini, Charlie makes a left turn at a street corner. The street markings make it clear that all the traffic on the street is going the wrong way down a one way street. (Charlie drives over a right turn arrow in the left-most lane that is facing him.)
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In first few shots of the traffic jam scene there is a shot of the armored truck from across the street and you can see the wheels of a car spinning (center frame), but the car isn't going anywhere.
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Positioning and damage to the Minis changes in the street chase after the tunnel scene
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When Lyle measures the trucks as they pass the first camera, each truck's number is clearly visible on the panel immediately behind its LHR wheel. In all other shots, none of the trucks is numbered there.
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In the beginning when the crew drove into the water, they all would have died, the temperature of the water is so low, your hart and lungs would stop working. And if the dive would not have killed them, they would die outside the water, with wet clothes and a temperature below zero.
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Stella's hair when she and Charlie are up in her bedroom talking about Steve and her father.
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When Charlie is shooting hoops in the garage and is going over the heist on Steve, he is holding the basketball, but in the very next shot Lyle passes him the ball that Charlie should be holding.
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The shots of truck 128 during the traffic jam are not consistent.
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While Stella is parallel parking, as the motorcycle pulls away from the spot, there are several people standing on the sidewalk, right by the street. As Stella parks and exits her car, they are gone.
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When the team is test driving the Minis after the mods, the extra headlights on the red car (Stella's car) switches on and off between shots
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When the Minis are racing through the city together, the blue one clearly has damage to the right hand side rear quarter panel. After they split and and the blue one does a left, it clearly has no damage now, or any time later.
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After damaging Charlie's Mini Cooper with the tail rotor, Steve's helicopter is set down and he commandeers a truck to continue the chase. As he speeds away the top rotor of the helicopter is completely stationary, despite the fact that only a few seconds has elapsed and there was insufficient time for it to have "spun down" to a stop.
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Crew or equipment visible 

While Stella is driving to the train, you can briefly see the reflection on the driver side window of a cameraman sitting in the passenger seat.
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When the van carrying the gold falls down in the underground a chain "helping" it to fall is visible next the front wheels.
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In the beginning of the movie, when they navigate the boat backwards into the dock, immediately after Charlie says "we're in", the full camera crew can be seen in the reflection of the boats window.
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When Charlie's blue Mini jumps from the train platform onto the train lines, a pile of boxes designed to cushion the vehicle's impact can be clearly seen.
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When Charlie is being chased by Steve in the helicopter, he pulls a 180 when he sees the truck blocking his way. When he starts up again, and the shot shifts to ground level, you can see the reflection of the right front wheel in the safety shield that's in front of the door camera.
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Errors in geography 

When John Bridger calls his daughter Stella at the beginning of the film, she is still in bed and the light outside the window indicates early morning. She confirms this by saying, "Daddy, it's early". However, John calls her from Venice, Italy, at about 8:30 am local time. Assuming a 6 hour time difference to Philadelphia (where Stella is) this would make it 2:30 am her time. It is unlikely that any light would be visible at that time of the morning.
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The train that Lyle remotely stops in the station is a Blue Line train. The Blue Line is a light rail line that runs from Downtown Los Angeles all the way to Long Beach. It doesn't go anywhere near Hollywood.
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When the Minis are going down the metro, in the Hollywood and Highland station, it's not really the Hollywood and Highland station, but in fact the 7th and Metro station, stationed in Downtown Los Angeles, based on the fact that the three cars jump into the tunnel in front of a Blue Line train.
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Factual errors 

Bullets do not travel at full speed through water. In reality, all bullets slow rapidly as soon as they hit the water, contrary to what is seen when Steve shoots into the lake. Not only do bullets slow down quickly when fired into water, high powered bullets from weapons like the assault rife Steve is using actually shred within inches of the surface of the water and then simply settle to the bottom of (in this case) the lake. Oddly enough, high-powered bullets have less penetration through water than lower-powered ones (a bullet's power is determined by the cartridge charge).
It was stated earlier that brass would not be used in explosive applications and that gold is the best conductor. Actually gold is only the third best conductor. Copper is 33% more conductive than gold and Silver is 50% more conductive. Gold is used for critical contacts, not because it is a better conductor, but because it does not corrode. While brass is not an excellent conductor, it is 28% as conductive as copper and 40% as conductive as gold.
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At the beginning of the movie when they are in Italy stealing the safe, Lyle tells Steve that the wall is 14 feet 8 inches away. On the device, it reads 14.8, assuming 14.8 feet or 14 feet 9.6 inches. 14 feet 8 inches would be 14.667 on the device.
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In the alps, the border-sign says 'AUSTRIA'. In Europe, the country's border-sign is always spelled in the language of that specific country at that location. At the Italian-Austrian border that would be German, not English. So the sign would say: 'Republik Österreich'
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When Steve's cable is disconnected static shows on his HDTVs. He would have had a black screen. Static would appear only on analog sets.
When Charlie is confronted by Steve in the helicopter under the freeway, the buses in the background are MUNI buses. The movie takes place in Los Angeles; MUNI is the public transportation in San Francisco.
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When Charlie tells Lyle how many bricks there are, Lyle tells Charlie 208. He asks Lyle how much that's worth, and Lyle (after making a mistake) says $27 million. However, at that time, regular (non-decorated with the dancers) bricks were worth about $168,000 each, which would make 208 bricks worth at least about $35 million.
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When Charlie is asking Napster about the monetary value of the gold in the safe, he tells him, "Thirteen wide, four high, four deep," and Napster works out the value. However, this is the value for only one shelf of the safe. So while the team celebrates $27 million, they've actually got four or five times that amount.
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When we first see Stella breaking into the safe for the police, afterwards a crime scene tech comes in and begins taking pictures of a tape outline of a body on the floor. Police and crime scene techs never use tape, as it could compromise evidence.
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When the helicopter pilot says they're moving out he gives the flight identifier code as "three kilo fox" (3KF). This code is normally the last three characters of the aircraft registration but their helicopter has the registration N723KP.
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The dam the boys are standing on after stealing the gold (for the first time) is called the fedaia-dam and is located in the middle of a great ski area also known as 'the sella ronda'. You can see the lake and the dam when you are standing on the ski slopes. Considering there is a lot of snow on the mountains it's probably ski-ing season. So they couldn't have had a big gun shot fight and just take their time with getting out of there, a lot of people would have been witnesses!
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Before the first heist (in Venice), John Bridger calls his daughter Stella. The plans for the heist show that the crew will rob the house in the early morning (after the owner of the house leaves for work). When Stella answers the phone, she says "it's early" and asks her father to meet her for breakfast. If it is 8:30 or 9:00 in Venice, it would be more than "early" in Philadelphia (there is a six hour time difference) - it would be 2:30 or 3:00 a.m. A little too early for breakfast!.
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Miscellaneous 

After emptying the armored car and during the chase, the three Mini Coopers leap out of the drainage pipe and land front first despite being rear-loaded with over 1,500 pounds of gold each.
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After Wrench modifies the Minis, he and Charlie are walking past a shelf filled with what Wrench describes as "unnecessary engine parts". On that shelf are three exhaust headers and three crankshafts (along with many other parts) which are absolutely necessary for an engine to run.
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Incorrectly regarded as goofs 

Because the letters of the "Hollywood" sign are on a hill with an uneven, undulating surface, they're not all in the same plane. This means that from some angles it really does look as though the sign says "OHLLYWODO".
The weight of the gold recovered from the armored truck, valued at $27 million, would weigh around 4,500 pounds at the period price of gold. It is entirely possible to divide that among three (~1,500 lbs per car) highly modified mini coopers and move it around quickly. While it would make the cars quite tail heavy (they would land rear first, at quite an angle when jumped), it is not implausible to modify the suspension to handle the additional weight and increase power to achieve a reasonably quick degree of performance. In fact, we can hear that the mini Stella drives features the distinctive whine of an Eaton M62 supercharger. The minis have a 63/27 F/R weight distribution out of the box. With 1,500 lbs of gold in the rear, the distribution would change to roughly 41/59 and the car would weigh just over two tons.
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The wide shot of the driving range facing the "golfers" is not reversed; the numbers and letters are backwards because the signs are facing the street on the other side of the fence, and the camera is showing the back of those signs.
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Plot holes 

They should have stolen the key to the cable truck. Then when "becky" was inside with the man who murdered her father, she could kill him. Even how it happened, she should have knocked him out. Then they could steal the gold no problem. Everyone hiding in the van sneak in.
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Revealing mistakes 

It is said in the movie that the safe carried by the truck near the end of the film has a lock with a glass plate, and if it's not drilled right the glass could break. The glass didn't break when the car with safe inside hit the ground after traveling about eight meters down.
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When the Mini's exit the pipe during the escape from the underground at least one of the cars lands with it's nose hitting the ground first while it's tail is high in the air. Due to the weight of the gold in the back of the car this would be physically impossible.
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At the end of the movie, when Charlie Croker hands off the case of gold, he easily spins it around with one hand and lifts it off the ground very easily. Even if it's only half full of gold, the case would not be that easy to lift.
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There is no visible breath seen from the cold weather during any scenes in the Alps.
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The diver propulsion vehicles need a more or less neutral buoyancy to travel. To counteract the gold's weight, air-filled bladders of around 18 times the volume of gold would have been needed (gold has a density of 19.3) but none are showing.
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When they are in Italy at the beginning and trying to determine where to blow the safe out, Napster says 10 feet 8 inches and the laser machine says 10.8 which would actually be 10 feet 9.6 inches.
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During many of the Mini interior shots the big speedometer in the center of the dashboard shows two red lights on. One of these shows the handbrake is on whilst they are driving.
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When the Minis jump out of the tunnel, they all land on the front bumper, but in the next shot in the park, all the cars are undamaged.
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During the chase scenes with the Minis the camera often shoots from inside the car through the front windshield. When it does the speedometer (the big dial in the middle of the dash) is always at 0.
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When Stella's Mini is first loaded with weights, you see that some of them are strapped down and some are not. The ones that aren't strapped down would've been shifting around the inside of the car during the test run, and probably causing some decent damage. Yet we never see any of them shift their positions.
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When Donald Sutherland is talking to Charlize Theron on the phone at the start of the movie, just before they end the conversation, a guy can be seen in the background in Venice with a camcorder clearly recording Donald and the film crew.
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Obvious stunt double when Charlie hits Steve.
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During the scene where Steve steals the gold, first, as "Handsome" Rob is accelerating the van, one of the gunmen fires two shots directly at the windshield, but with no effect (no bullets seen impacting the windshield). Then, as the van is crashing through the guardrail, you see Steve fire three shots, then you see an unidentified man, possibly the passenger of the Land Rover, fires two shots at the van. Then, for two or three frames, the gun of the unidentified man is seen with the slide locked open, as the shooter has apparently run out of bullets but is still pointing the now-empty gun at the van.
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Spoilers

The goof item below may give away important plot points.

Factual errors 

2003 gold prices were about $372 per troy ounce, making the thirty million Charlie and his crew planned to steal back from Steve weight about 5,040 pounds, not 2,700. The curb weight of the 2003 Mini-Cooper is 2,524 lbs. The gross weight (weight of all cargo, passengers, the driver and a full tank of gas) is 3,236 lbs. To add another 5,040 pounds for a GVWR of 8,276 absolutely impossible for a Mini-cooper, even with beefed up suspension and engine, the axle could not sustain the weight nor could the tires, the best 175/65R15 tires for the mini cooper having a maximum load of 1,102 lbs. per tire. Thus, the Mini-Cooper, while fascinating to see and obvious marketing product placement, was exactly the wrong car to do the job, even if the 5,040 pounds of gold was split between all three mini's.
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See also

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

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