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Scientific mistakes in books and movies

(25 Posts)
TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Wed 06-Feb-13 23:39:24

Have stolen this idea from History Club but currently can't think of anything specific. Am sure there's oodles in any space related blockbuster film, for a start...

Back tomorrow with more inspiration, I hope...

Woolybob Sun 10-Feb-13 20:09:12

The entire plot of 2012 - "the neutrinos have mutated!" wtf?? Although it's almost worth it for Dara O'Briain's stand up routine about it!

Woolybob Sun 10-Feb-13 20:12:09

Also - has anyone seen 'The Core'?

Woolybob Sun 10-Feb-13 20:25:23

And (sorry on a roll now...) 'The whole nine yards' - Matthew Perry plays a dentist who does dental work on a dead guy to the extent that his xray looks identical to another characters.

cumfy Sun 10-Feb-13 22:05:02

Numerous though they must be, the only one that comes to mind at the moment is from Argo:

The Iranians chase a 747 at take-off in a pick-up truck, gaining all the time and performing a handbrake turn screeching stop as they draw level with the 747 (ie faster than the 747) just lifting off.

Take off speed Boeing 747 ..... 180-200 mph.grin

I found it utterly hilarious.
The rest of the audience clearly did not.blush

TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Mon 11-Feb-13 00:04:02

While we're on trucks, "Speed" and the truck jumping the gap...and I'm pretty sure that the speedometer doesn't measure air speed but relies on the wheels going round.

Neutrinos? Mutating? HowWhatHow!? Sheesh.

There was a DLSayers short story about faking dental records - at least that was done before death and it was discovered quite quickly.

GrimmaTheNome Mon 11-Feb-13 00:04:08

Not a book or a movie, but perhaps worse because it wasn't fiction - I've not caught any of Brian Cox's new series but DH reported that he wrote Di oxyribose a couple of weeks ago.

SusieSusieSheep Thu 14-Feb-13 06:56:01

I haven't actually seen it but I've been told there's a good line in a film about the sun being in danger of blowing up/disappearing (I think it may be called 'Sunshine') where halfway through the film the main astronaut turns round to the other astronauts and tells them, "Men, if we can't save the sun............ we're all going to die."

Cue gasps as if the astronauts didn't know that we need the sun to live. If anyone has seen it though and I'm wrong, do feel free to correct.

SusieSusieSheep Thu 14-Feb-13 06:56:48

^ So not an actual mistake, just silly.

TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Thu 14-Feb-13 08:46:54

grin Susie. And Trills has said on the Brian Cox thread that he was the physics adviser on Sunshine!

slug Thu 14-Feb-13 09:39:55

DH is a scientist. He's well known for muttering at the TV screen. He even spotted a mistake in the Sainted Brian Cox's programme last week. though he may have just wanted to interrupt my transfixed stare

TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Thu 14-Feb-13 10:18:19

I'm sure that broke the spell, slug not

GrimmaTheNome Thu 14-Feb-13 18:30:41

The one film I remember seeing on TV which was really very good not only on the science but on details of the real scientists (I was working with crystallographers who knew some of them at the time and they were impressed) was [ Life Story]]

Are there any others you'd commend?

TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Thu 14-Feb-13 19:47:35

Thanks Grimma. I will ponder your question...

MrsCosmopilite Sun 17-Feb-13 22:07:57

Compared to all the above, my comment is trivial and not so relevant, but I have a garden wildlife book, published mid-1970's. The author categorically states that only the male robin has a red breast.

sashh Mon 18-Mar-13 07:20:21

Can't remember the film, some astronaut turns to another and says, "It's Spring on Earth now".

Yes because we don't have a southern hemisphere do we?

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Tue 19-Mar-13 13:34:55

In films made in the US, in general there is The USA and Everywhere Else, which barely registers. No reason why a space movie should be different grin

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Tue 19-Mar-13 13:36:26

Pretty much every Bond movie (or other action movie) - the hero manages to overcome basic anatomy!

MissWooWoo Tue 19-Mar-13 13:58:19

What is History Club?

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Tue 19-Mar-13 14:08:20

Another MN topic!

larlemucker Wed 10-Apr-13 23:12:30

Main one springing to mind, starting a centrifuge without a counter balance. It's the small things!!

DH tells me off now when we watch science stuff!!

PedroYoniLikesCrisps Sun 21-Apr-13 20:00:07

Back to the Future. That is all.

Seabright Mon 22-Apr-13 08:13:31

Last week's Endeavour (not last night's episode). The detectives found Digoxin (heart medication) in the victim's room and her doctor says "ah yes, dangerous if used in the wrong dose; it is made from Deadly Nightshade, you know".

I thought I'd spotted a major clue, since Digoxin is made from Foxgloves, not Deadly Nightshade, but no, just a big mistake in the script.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Wed 24-Apr-13 11:03:11

Wow, have the Endeavour writers read no Golden Age crime fiction?

Seabright Thu 25-Apr-13 19:52:43

I know! Talk about a beginner's mistake!

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