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Anachronisms in film.


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I'm sure this topic has been covered before, but I just signed up whilst watching "The Great Garrick" on TCM. Garrick is on his way to Paris in a coach and passes a sign reading: "Paris: 160 kilometers". Problem is, he died in 1779, and kilometers were introduced by the National Convention in 1793. Any other obscure [i.e. not The Godfather, not Star Wars] whoppers out there?

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Welcome Rev.  And yeah, we've covered this ground before, but revisits are also welcome as new members sometimes get here after those previous threads have long faded away, and "fresh eyes" might(as you just did) come up with something the rest of us might have missed.  :)

 

 

Sepiatone

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I'm sure this topic has been covered before, but I just signed up whilst watching "The Great Garrick" on TCM. Garrick is on his way to Paris in a coach and passes a sign reading: "Paris: 160 kilometers". Problem is, he died in 1779, and kilometers were introduced by the National Convention in 1793. Any other obscure [i.e. not The Godfather, not Star Wars] whoppers out there?

Well, easy for you to say, uh Reverend being that you were alive during Barry Lyndon's time.

 

There are phone lines in some British movie I've seen, that could not have been there for the time period but I must assess my memory bank to remember its name. Might have been "The Wrong Box" but I'm not sure.

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Anachronistic use of language is endemic to movies and television these days. "Support" as a verb meaning to give emotional support and the really loathsome (to me) psychobabble term "supportive" were little known before the 1970s and uncommon before the 1980s in general conversation. "Self-esteem" was little used before the 1960s. "Judgmental" was rarely used before the 1970s/1980s. Even a writer like Julian Fellowes of Downtown Abbey uses "support" forty or fifty years too early.

 

 

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I'm sure this topic has been covered before, but I just signed up whilst watching "The Great Garrick" on TCM. Garrick is on his way to Paris in a coach and passes a sign reading: "Paris: 160 kilometers". Problem is, he died in 1779, and kilometers were introduced by the National Convention in 1793. Any other obscure [i.e. not The Godfather, not Star Wars] whoppers out there?

 

Big fan of The Great Garrick,  but I never noticed this.     My favorite part of the film is when Garrick and the Olivia DeHavilland character are outside by a pond.   The reflection of Olivia from the pond is also a reflection of James Whale and his direction.

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One that is sort of an anachronism to me is military uniforms.  Lots of movies and TV shows, especially SciFi and Horror, get them wrong.  Not talking about the medals, ribbons, etc. so much as the style, placement of rank, ranks themselves, etc.

 

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The annual showing of Yankee Doodle Dandy brings up a favorite--

We see one of Cohan's flag waving shows, and the Warner 1942 morale-messaging gets a little too ahead of itself as we see choruses of Army, Navy, police, average citizens, etc, chanting "We'll win the war again! We'll win the war again!"

 

...Rather politically prescient for a scene supposedly taking place in the 1920's.   :unsure:

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