Goofs from Murder on the Orient Express
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- The opening scene takes place in 1934 Jerusalem, more exactly next to the Western Wall (also known as the Wailing Wall). There was no yard in front of the Wall until after Israel took over the place in 1967.
- Poirot solves a mystery of a theft in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, announcing his solution in front of the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem. Immediately after this, he appears in a port city to travel by boat to Istanbul. Although Jerusalem is landlocked in the desert, he is not supposed to be in Jerusalem, but his travel to the port city (likely Jaffa) is not explicitly shown.
- Poirot wears an elaborate mustache protector the first night on the train. We know this because we see him wake up with it on. The second night, however, he doesn't, which is out of character, seeing as how he psychologically needs everything to be perfect.
- There are prominent product placements for Godiva Chocolatier in the film, however they are using the modern logo rather than the more ornate one which would be correct for the 1930s. Further, prior to the 1950s Godiva only had one store (in Brussels), making it unlikely that the chocolate would be available on a train journey from Turkey to France.
- Between Vinkovci (last stop before the murder) and Brod (today Slavonski Brod, the final stop in the movie) there is roughly 70km of a totally flat railroad. Nowhere near the alpine/mountain/snowy setting that it is depicted in the movie.
- When Johnny Depp's character is in the small bathroom in his carriage compartment, you can clearly see the holes in his earlobes from his ear rings. It would be unusual for an American man in that era to have pierced ears.
- Poirot writes down the words from the burning paper in his notebook. When he returns to the notebook it is clear that the message has been rewritten as the writing is not exactly the same.
- Hercule Poirot famously looked after his "moustaches" by wearing a cover over them at night. This is shown in the first shot of him tucked up in bed with his book. However, when the train is derailed it would appear that Poirot had decided not to cover his moustache that night.
- The number of passenger cars changes between scenes. It is also mentioned that there is a second-class carriage, but the train consistently has four carriages, and all of them are accounted for (first-class, baggage, two dining cars).
- At the end of the film, Poirot is needed in Egypt to investigate a 'death on the Nile', referring to a possible sequel based on another Christie novel. In the novel, however, the murders take place after Poirot is aboard the Nile steamer.
- Hercule Poirot continuously mispronounces the french word "oeufs" (eggs). The "fs" at the end should be silent.
- In the incredibly tight shots inside the train, there are dozens of hinges that are attached with Phillips head screws. Phillips head screws were not invented until 1930, so it is difficult to imagine they would be installed so prominently on a train in Europe only four years after their invention.
- Poirot is a native French speaker, yet multiple times pronounces the word for "eggs" (les oeufs), as "leyz euhfs". In actual French, both the F and the S are silent; it is pronounced with just a vowel sound for the noun, like "leyz euh".
- At the end of the film, Poirot is told of a "death on the Nile". Poirot was on the boat, on the Nile, when the murder from the novel "Death on the Nile" occurred.
- As the train leaves Istanbul, a panorama of the city shows the Galata Tower, a cylindrical tower with a distinctive high conical roof; however, although built in by the Genoese in 1348, the roof was destroyed in 1875, and was not restored until renovations which took place in 1965-67. For the intervening period, including during the time-frame of the movie, the tower was flat topped.
- Poirot and Arbuthnot fight each other in a boxcar, however, the next shot is of the entire train, which does not include a boxcar.
- Although every cabin is affected by the derailment and the sudden stop of the train -to the point that suitcases are thrown off their storage and people off their beds- Ratchett's cabin stays unaffected. Ratchett himself is nicely tucked in bed and his belongings (pocket watch, ashtray, etc) on the table.
- At the very end of the movie, Poirot is summoned to the next case, Death on the Nile, where a murder took place, while he was working the case on the Orient Express. However, according to the book "Death on the Nile", Poirot was already in Egypt and on the boat there, long before that crime was committed.
- Clearly in one scene an actor is seen lighting his cigarette with a classic 'Zippo' lighter (and casually closing the top). As the story takes place in 1934, it may seem anachronistic for the 'Zippo', however the first Zippos were manufactured in 1932.
- In the final scene at the Wailing Wall, Poirot's white pocket square is on the right side of his jacket...where no pocket exists. In the next scene, it's on the correct, left side. Then again on the ferry, it's back on the right.
- When Poirot is trying to secure a last-minute berth on the train, he is told that it is fully booked. Various berths are discussed by numbers, until he is finally allocated space in number three. In other words - the number of one's berth is decided at the time of booking. However, when Princess Dragomiroff boards the train she rejects two berths before selecting a third. If her berth was pre-booked she should not have been able to do this.
- When Poirot interrogates Ms. Schmidt, she is requested to speak in German. Although the effort is commendable, there is a strong accent and you can tell right away that she is not a native speaker.
- Johnny Depp's handle is broken off by Hercule using his cane, the handle is on the right side of the door. When the flashback scene showing everyone leaving Johnny Depp's room, the handle is on the left side of the door.
- On the train station Brod, Poirot is talking to two policemen of color. During the time this move takes place in Yugoslavia all the policemen were Caucasian.
- Hercule Poirot presents a mystery he had to solve that took place in a church. In his words to the public who came to see him in front of the Western Wall, he mentions that the church is The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, that he claims to be, in his words, "just above them". Well, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is indeed in the Old City of Jerusalem, but in another part of it: In the Christian Quarter. Above the place where he stands there's, in fact, a different holy place: the Dome of the Rock, but that's an Islamic shrine - not a church.
- Even though attractive SNCF 241.P 65 was used, the Class 241 was built from 1948 to 1952, but the movie takes place in 1934. In addition while the train goes through Turkey and Yugoslavia the locomotive never changes. This would be impossible due to regulations at the time. During the trip of the Orient Express the locomotive would have been changed on every border crossing.
- Although most of the movie plays out in winter in the mountains, none of the characters take special precautions with regards to warm clothing, none seem to mind the cold, and none of them have visible breath as they should in such cold environment.
- The "ice" on the outside of the cabin windows is exactly identical on every window of the train.
- On just about every scene Poirot's goatee has either a different shape or different hair patterns. With prominent gray hairs you easily spot the lack of continuity. This is very strange for a character that supposedly has OCD and such a prominent visual characteristic.
- In the Italian version of the movie, when making his offer to hire Poirot, Mr. Ratchett says: "Italians, third world!". The term "Third world" was created during the Cold War by Alfred Sauvy in an article published in the French magazine L'Observateur on 1952 referring to unaligned countries with either Soviet bloc or the NATO bloc.. long time after 1934 when the movie takes place.
- When the derailed train is finally put back on the rails, there is a scene immediately following that shows Poirot standing in front of the locomotive. The train is clearly still derailed in this scene, even though we saw it get put back on the rails just a moment earlier. A few scenes later, the train is back on the rails again.
- When Poirot and Dr. Arbuthnot fight, they are on the floor in an open side door in the baggage wagon, facing a great depth. In the general view of the train that follows, there is no such door, so it is either missing in the shot, or facing the other side of the train, where there is no great depth.