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Mogambo (1953) Poster

(1953)

Goofs

Jump to: Character error (2)  | Continuity (4)  | Errors in geography (3)  | Factual errors (5)  | Miscellaneous (5)  | Revealing mistakes (3)

Character error 

A cheetah walks through Honey Bear's tent late one night. Cheetahs are diurnal, hunting only during the day and sleeping at night.
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As Linda is a rank novice, rather than simply handing the binoculars to her, Victor should have used them first and adjusted the focus.
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Continuity 

When Honey Bear is awaiting the boat to take away (first time round) she is seen sitting on her suitcases and trunks. Then she walks down the slope with just her umbrella in her hand, bids Marswell good bye and hops in the boat. The captain lifts the gangway and off they sail away, forgetting her bags on the shore.
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When the trio are singing around the piano, Brownie can be seen standing close to Nordley on Nordley's right-hand side. However in the shot of Marswell in the doorway, only Nordley can be seen at the piano in the background - Brownie has disappeared.
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When searching for gorillas there is a cut from the row of beaters, who are entering the brush in what is clearly a dry season, to a studio set of intensely green jungle.
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The group flees the Samburu area by canoe but by the time they are heading for the gorilla country they have a wagon drawn by oxen. When Eloise departs, it is near gorilla country, with Victor saying that he was going back to capture some gorillas. Eloise leaves with the canoes. The purpose of the wagon footage is a mystery, presumably thrown in because Ford liked the footage.
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Errors in geography 

During the gorilla footage - shot separately from the rest of the film - the gorillas are shown eating pineapples, which, while being grown in ZImbabwe and Cote d'Ivoire, are not native to the region of Africa in this movie.
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The geography in the film is a mish-mash of locations. The location of the compound could be in Kenya or Tanzania, but gorillas in eastern Africa are only found in Rwanda and Uganda. In addition, there is also a statement that the camp could only be reached by boat, but that doesn't square with the location.
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When Marswell shows Linda "gorilla country" he points to a large almost treeless valley, which is nothing like the densely forested mountains where gorillas live. There is also mention of being light-headed from the altitude, which is a bit off as well. Nairobi is a mile high and where they are headed is perhaps a thousand feet higher. Considering the distance covered and the time it would take to get there, the gradual change in altitude would be unnoticeable.
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Factual errors 

In the gorilla sequence in the latter part of the movie, Vic is with Nordly when he "cocks" his rifle. He opens/unlocks the bolt a quarter-turn and draw it fully back but when he advances it forward to re-lock there is no bullet in the breech.
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The Samburu (an itinerant tribe related to the Masaai) live in north central Kenya, which is approximately 500 miles from the Ugandan gorilla country. This would have the travelers headed around 130º in the wrong direction. Assuming the camp being located somewhere in a 200 mile north-south range, they would have to head west, not northeast. There would be no such river, plus it would mean crossing between 130 to 160 miles of the expanse of Lake Victoria,
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Quinine pills would not have any positive effect on Donald. It is used to prevent malaria, and not very effective at that.
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In this film gorillas are depicted as being highly aggressive. In fact, they are gentle-natured and do not show aggression unless threatened. Even then, their approach is that of intimidation rather than sudden violence. With the modern-day agricultural encroachments into traditional gorilla lands, gorillas are often seen passing through the farm fields and completely ignoring the workers.
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When they first arrive at the edge of the gorilla area, a large group of beaters are arrayed at the edge of the jungle. This would not be done when searching for gorilla. The beaters would not be necessary until the next day, when they trap the gorillas.
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Miscellaneous 

Victor's house doesn't have screens, despite the fact that it is on a river. By twilight, the place would be absolutely swarming with mosquitoes and the lights would attract all sorts of insects.
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When driving across through the bush, interior shots show virtually no jostling at all. As they are in a Land Rover with its typically firm seats and no seat belts, they should have been bouncing around quite a lot.
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A great deal of the dialogue was looped in and not in the best of settings. A common issue with this film is that louder bits of dialogue generate a noticeable amount of natural reverb, which would not be present in settings like tents.
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When Eloise jumps off the canoe, all three canoes are heading directly for the bank at the left, rather than to the course of the river.
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At the beginning they've caught a young black leopard in a net and are trying to extract it from the pit and get it in a cage. The top of the net is dark (olive drab) and clearly old while the bottom, where the leopard is, is quite light in color (blond) and clearly new. All in one net.
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Revealing mistakes 

When Honeybear is having dinner with Marswell, Brown-Pryce and Koltchak on her first night, it is visibly dark outside as Marswell had earlier told her dinner would be at 9:00. But when the servant comes running in calling for the men, it is clearly broad daylight as seen through the doorway.
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After Victor rescues Mrs Nordley when she wanders off, a sudden storm blows in. But only the trees and bushes near the actors are blown about by the 'storm', the trees visible a short distance behind them are completely calm.
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As Victor and Eloise argue on the deck, she is holding a cigarette between the index and middle fingers of her left hand. At one point, she folds her arms. She should have reacted to the cigarette now burning her, but doesn't. When she unfolds her arms, the cigarette remains between her fingers, and intact.
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