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Sleepers (1996) Poster

(1996)

Goofs

Jump to: Anachronisms (8)  | Boom mic visible (1)  | Character error (1)  | Continuity (10)  | Crew or equipment visible (1)  | Errors in geography (2)  | Factual errors (3)  | Miscellaneous (1)  | Incorrectly regarded as goofs (2)  | Plot holes (2)  | Spoilers (2)

Anachronisms 

When the boys try to steal the hot dog cart, its flying a Greek flag adopted in 1978. In the late 1960s, the Greek flag was a single white cross on blue background.
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When the adult Shakes and Mike meet in Queens, a train of "Redbird" subway pass above them on the "7" line. In 1981, the cars were either all white or turquoise and white.
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In the mid 1960s, New York streetlight bulbs would have been mercury, not yellow sodium. Many streets would still have original cast iron lamps.
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After the trial, Mike enters the subway at the BMT Chambers Street station (under the Municipal Building). The station signs are of 1990s type, not from the early 1980s.
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A theater marquee for "Dreamgirls" is visible in a scene set in fall 1981. That show opened on December 20, 1981.
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A train of R40M/R42 subway cars travels on the Williamsburg Bridge, in their post-1988 rebuild configuration. In 1981, the exteriors blue and silver exteriors.
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When the boys are lying on the roof right before they steal the hot dog cart, the One Penn Plaza skyscraper in Midtown Manhattan is visible behind Michael. That was built in 1972, five years after the scene takes place.
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The R33/R36 cars on the IRT #7 line that approach 45 Road station in Long Island City, Queens were not painted red until 1985 or 1988. Most turquoise colors in 1981. The MTA "M" logos at the end of each car were added in 1986.
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Boom mic visible 

When Father Bobby visits young Shakes at Wilkinson.
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Character error 

The priest says that it took Michelangelo 9 years to paint the Sistine Chapel ceiling. It took 4 years to paint the ceiling, and 4 more to paint 'The Last Judgement' on the wall behind the altar. The recent restoration and cleaning of the Michelangelo frescoes in the chapel took 9 years.
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Continuity 

When Michael talks to Carol on the subway, Michael strokes Carol's hair in some shots, but not in others.
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John offers Tommy a cigarette from a Marlboro pack in the bar. Tommy clearly puts a Camel cigarette in his mouth.
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Michael's cigarette swaps sides when hugging at the end.
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Near the end of the film, when Robert De Niro's character hands the basketball tickets to Brad Pitt's character in court, Pitt reaches for the ticket twice.
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When the hot dog wagon starts to fall down the subway, the umbrella stays on the stairs. In the next shot, it is crushed by the wagon. In the next shot, it's back on the stairs.
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Shakes' eye color changes from brown in the late 1960s to blue in 1981.
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During the lunchroom scene at the Home for Boys, Nokes breaks up the fight, and the boys stand in front of him waiting for orders. During this scene, Michael's hand repeatedly jumps from his nose to his hip.
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The amount of blood on Michael's face during the scene in the Wilkinson lunchroom.
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Pen disappears from someone's pocket during the courtroom scene.
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When the young boys are looking into the Ice Capades' dressing room, the windows are covered by a wire mesh. Looking back at the peeping eye from the inside, there is no mesh.
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Crew or equipment visible 

When the boys sit around a table and decide to keep quiet after Wilkinson, the camera's shadow is visible on Tommy's face and John's back. It moves as the shot tracks around the table.
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Errors in geography 

During the trial, the outside scenes are shot at the Manhattan Municipal Building, which house city offices, not the courts. The courthouses (federal and state) and the district attorneys office are located at Foley Square, a few block north of the municipal building.
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Shakes says he will meet Mike at 45th Street in Queens. He gets off the IRT subway at 45th Road in Long Island City. The real 45th Street is several miles further east, in the Astoria/Sunnyside section of Queens.
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Factual errors 

Defense Attorney Danny Snyder should have moved for a "motion for judgment of acquittal" after the state/prosecution rested their case. No lawyer would fail to make that motion because if granted, the defense does not have to put on a case because the State failed to meet its burden of proof during their case in chief. Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure Rule 29 (a) states "after the government closes its evidence or after the close of all the evidence, the court on the defendant's motion must enter a judgment of acquittal of any offense for which the evidence is insufficient to sustain a conviction." New York follows this Federal Rule as discussed in U.S. v. Irving, 682 F.Supp.2d 243 E.D.N.Y.(2010).
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At the end of the movie, the outside of the courthouse says "United States Courthouse," making it a Federal Court. The trial took place in a State court.
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The narrator reports the summer of 1968 as "the Summer of Love." This was actually a hippie-reference nickname given to the summer of 1967.
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Miscellaneous 

When King Benny is speaking with Little Caesar, he incorrectly says "My clear is debt" instead of "My debt is clear".
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Incorrectly regarded as goofs 

When the boys are being driven to the detention center, the road has double yellow road stripes and yellow 'dashed' center stripes. Dashed center markings were still white until the early 1970s. While many roads still used white solid center markings, double yellow lines had been introduced in the 1950s, so they may have been on that road in the mid 1960s.
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When John Riley tells the bar tender to give the two men drinks at the end of the bar, the camera angle is from about halfway down the bar. A radiator is visible in the dining area in the back, but no tables or people are visible. When John comes back from the men's room and tells Tommy to look in the back room, Sean Nokes is visible from where they sit. He was not visible earlier because he was not in view from the bar until John walked into the room and saw him sitting there at a table by the window. The table was out of sight until Tommy looked in that direction.
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Plot holes 

For the alibi to be believable, the priest would've had to say that the murderers were at the game with him before the trial.
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At the end of the movie during the reunion, the men reflect back on their boyhood singing group before they entered the youth facility. They mention that one of the members wanted to name the group "The Count and his Cristo's" after the book that he read while in the juvenile facility. The time line doesn't make sense. He wouldn't have proposed the name before they entered the facility because the story didn't mean anything to them then. It wouldn't have made sense for them to talk about naming the group after they were imprisoned.
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Spoilers

The goof items below may give away important plot points.

Continuity 

When John and Tommy enter McHale's as adults, an elderly couple are entering the dining room portion along with a waitress. The man removes his hat and heads for a table with his wife. Neither the couple nor the waitress are in the room while John walks in and later when he and Tommy shoot Sean Nokes.
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Revealing mistakes 

When John and Tommy kill Sean Nokes in the dining room of McHale's, they use semi-automatic hand guns. However, neither gun ejects shell casings, and they did not stop to pick up the brass that would've been ejected.
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See also

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

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