Olympus Has Fallen (2013) Poster


Jump to: Character error (2) | Continuity (8) | Errors in geography (1) | Factual errors (11) | Plot holes (1) | Revealing mistakes (5) | Spoilers (3)

Character error 

There are several shots in the movie where news TV channels display "Whitehouse" instead of "White House".
Secret Service Director Jacobs states that the activation of the ICBM self-destruction program--which does not exist--would make the U.S. vulnerable to nuclear missile attack. Reality is that the ICBM, SLBM, and bomber force only deters such an attack...the nation has always been vulnerable to nuclear missile attack, as it does not have a deployed, large-scale missile defense system (and did not pursue one under the ABM Treaty with the USSR/Russia).


'Morgan Freeman' is introduced as Speaker Alex Trumbull when he appears in the news. Then, he is called Speaker Allan Trumbull throughout the rest of the movie.
Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) looks shaved while having coffee with Secret Service Director Lynn Jacobs and trying (and failing) to call his wife. He then leaves a message and is obviously not shaved.
In "The Beast", near the beginning of the movie, the First Lady is wearing/not wearing her seatbelt between shots.
After the AC-130 is shot down, in the interior shots of the cockpit, a Boeing 727 cockpit is used.
(at around 1h 30 mins) Leah's watch shows 11:30 PM. However, the SEALs attack occurs after midnight and before her phone talk with Mike.
(at around 44 mins) There is a wounded soldier in the hospital ER, yet no military personnel was involved in the defense of the White House. They show up after it has been taken.
After Banning and Connor emerge from between the walls, Banning shoots his pistol to slide lock. He immediately drops the pistol and draws another. But the next shot shows him still holding the empty pistol.
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During the SEALs' insertion, Banning manages to shoot a terrorist with an empty pistol (that is, the slide is either locked back or jammed open).
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Errors in geography 

When Banning's wife is watching the news with other medical staff on the TV, the white coat of one of the staff members carries the logo for North Louisiana Hospital, even though they are supposed to be in Washington. (Many scenes were filmed in Louisiana).

Factual errors 

Both planes sent to intercept the intruding Gunship are shot down by Gatling guns mounted on each side of the enemy aircraft. To avoid incidents like this all interceptor fighters use special intercept-formations where one plane establishes visual contact with the intruder, thus flies beside him and the other one flies behind the intruder to shoot him down, should the other interceptor experience hostile action.
There is no Cerberus code or other self-destruct capability on U.S. nuclear missiles. Also, the possession of one of the codes by the Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff would make no sense. The Chairman is not the chain of command for the employment of nuclear forces. The President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Commander, U.S. Strategic Command (who is stationed at Offutt AFB, Nebraska) are the "top three" in this chain.
When the AC130 gunship is downed it is referred to as a "bogey" which is an unidentified contact, but should have been referred to as a "Bandit" as it is now identified as a foe.
When the South Korean premier arrives at the White House he is greeted by a Secret Service agent. Protocol dictates that he should be met by a member of the president's cabinet.
The C-130 evades the SAMs launched from the White House by emitting flares. In reality, this tactic would be useless. The SAM batteries installed on the rooftops surrounding the White House (not on it) are the Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System missiles, which use both a monopulse Doppler tracking radar and a laser beam to guide the missile to its target. Flares would have had absolutely no effect on the missiles.
The non-existent self-destruction program which exists on the ICBM force is shown all over the U.S. map. In fact, the 450 U.S. ICBMs are based out of Montana, Wyoming, and North Dakota, with missiles in each of these states plus Colorado only.
General Clegg is shown wearing Marksmanship badges on his uniform. US Army Officers as a matter of tradition do not wear these awards.
All references to NORAD are incorrect. NORAD (the North American Aerospace Defense Command) is a combined command with the mission of detecting and reporting attack on North America. It possesses no nuclear weapons. The combatant command responsible for strategic attack is Strategic Command, and the ICBMs would be operated by the Air Force Global Strike Command, not NORAD.
The Presidential limousine has standard thickness doors and windows, revealing it has not been reinforced with armor plating and ballistic glass. The actual Presidential limousine is so heavily armored, the Secret Service refers to it as "The Beast."
(at around 81 mins) The drone that spots incoming helicopters is the small, electrically powered drone that was launched at dusk (around 7pm). It does not have the power to remain in flight for 4+ hours.
When the AC-130 is intercepted by two USAF aircraft right before the attack, they are both shot down after the AC-130 deploys cannon on both flanks. In reality, all AC-130 variants have cannon only on the port (left) side of the aircraft. The aircraft attacks by performing a left-hand pylon turn centered on its target. It is intended as an air-to-ground weapon system, not air-to-air.

Plot holes 

Even after 18 months of Mike not being in the White House all the lock codes are the same as he remembers them.

Revealing mistakes 

The White House is not nearly as bright white colored as depicted in the movie. The front lawn of the White House is much deeper between the house and the street than depicted.
When the two Korean terrorists use RPGs to destroy the security checkpoint buildings, they stand directly behind each other. This is extremely dangerous due to the back blast of the rockets.
When we see one of the news channels broadcasting the event, the news title reads "Terrorist Attack The White House" (instead of "Terrorists Attack The White House" or "Terrorist Attack on The White House").
During the hospital triage scene, a bloodied man is put in a wheelchair to be helped. His amputated left arm is obviously an old, well-healed amputation.
During the fly-by attack of the C-130, one of the 'snipers' is firing a bolt action rifle. He never cycles the action, but he still manages to continue firing his weapon.


The goof items below may give away important plot points.


After the Hydra weapon had been destroyed, the news feed shows no smoke. In a later scene there's a great deal of smoke billowing from the building.

Factual errors 

During the attack, the Speaker of the House is "officially" placed under Secret Service protection because the President and Vice President are incapacitated. However The Speaker of the House is a role that already qualifies for such protection.

Plot holes 

At about 1 hour in, when Banning discovers the President's son in the walls, the kid is hiding as he knows people are after him - yet when the glare of a flashlight attached to a gun blinds him in the face such that he has no idea who is behind it, he jumps into the arms of person with the gun. At that time he had no idea whether this was Banning or a terrorist.

See also

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

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