Questions tagged [historical-accuracy]

Questions about the precise conformity of events or characters portrayed in films or TV shows to real figures/events.

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51
votes
4answers
23k views

Did Neil Armstrong really do this on the Moon?

The film First Man (2018) is about Neil Armstrong and the Apollo 11 mission to the Moon. In the movie, one scene shows Did he actually do this in real life or was this a fictional plot device added ...
39
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2answers
11k views

Is the bird killing in The Prestige based on historical reality?

In The Prestige (2006), there is a magic trick in which a bird is made to disappear and it is revealed that the bird is secretly killed by crushing it flat to make it "disappear". Is this trick from ...
25
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2answers
7k views

Is Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk historically inaccurate in portraying absence of the Indian army?

Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk has been accused of ignoring Indian soldiers' presence in Dunkirk. But is there any proof that there were Indian soldiers stuck there too in the first place? The British ...
23
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1answer
3k views

Why is Havana covered in 5-digit numbers in Our Man in Havana?

In the 1959 film version of Our Man in Havana, the streets of Havana are littered in signs with 4- and 5-digit numbers on them. Here's an example: Notice the "00260", "19072", and "42857" left of ...
23
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2answers
2k views

Is HBO's Chernobyl accurate about the sequence of instructions causing reactor stall?

In the series finale of Chernobyl on HBO, Dyatlov orders Akimov and Toptenov to bring the reactor power down to 700 MW, as per the written test instructions, and then leaves the room without giving a ...
20
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1answer
100k views

Did Churchill really talk to people on the London Underground?

In the pivotal scene of "Darkest Hour" Winston Churchill (Gary Oldman), on his way to Parliament, ditches his car and takes the Tube. On the train he talks with some regular Londoners and this ...
20
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3answers
441k views

What is the connection between Ragnar from Vikings and Ragnar from The Last Kingdom?

The popular History series Vikings is run by Ragnar Lothbrok, the main character who is a Viking that set his eyes on England. Vikings is inspired by historical events. In The Last Kingdom we follow ...
19
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6answers
3k views

What was the significance of the necklace?

At the end of the movie, when Leonidas knows he is going to die, he tells Dilios to go back and tell everybody what happened. He also takes some sort of braid or string out of the back of his hair and ...
19
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1answer
9k views

Did Oskar Schindler really lament not having saved more Jews?

At the end of Schindler's List, there is a scene where Oskar Schindler realises, almost breaking down in tears in front of all of his workers, that each of the extravagances/luxuries he still has ...
19
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1answer
2k views

How historically accurate is the climactic briefing scene in Downfall?

Despite a usual number of goofs and some controversy about its historical accuracy, the 2004 German film Downfall (Der Untergang) is generally acknowledged to contain many authentic parts. Various ...
18
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3answers
5k views

Is the sword fighting historically accurate?

I recently watched Game of Thrones. The show is set in a pseudo-medieval world. I'm wondering whether the sword fights and the swords are authentic representations. Here're an example:
18
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1answer
62k views

Did Queen's performance really cause Live Aid to clear $1,000,000 in donations?

In Bohemian Rhapsody, Bob Geldof is shown pleading with viewers to donate money. The phone bank operators are waiting for their phones to ring. Then, Queen gets on stage, the phone banks are busy, and ...
18
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1answer
32k views

How historically accurate is the TV series Spartacus?

I've recently started watching the Spartacus (just finished Blood and Sand and Gods of the Arena, currently watching Vengeance) and the events described seemed rather exaggerated. While it doesn't ...
17
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5answers
17k views

Were African people common in Rome during gladiator fights?

In the Spartacus series there are some African actors playing gladiators, especially Peter Mensah as Oenomaus (Batiatus' doctore). He has done a great job but my question is, were African people that ...
17
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1answer
3k views

Did John Glenn really ask for that?

In Hidden Figures when John Glenn's rocket was about to be launched into space there was some uncertainty regarding the calculation results provided by IBM 7090. Al Harrison was discussing this with ...
16
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3answers
2k views

Have there been any movies about or with realistic ninjas?

Ninjas in fiction are usually very dramatic, highly visible acrobats, dressed in black pajamas and ski masks, who kill people with weapons like nunchakus, throwing stars, etc. To the best of my ...
15
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2answers
18k views

In 10000 BC, is the Persian-like civilization connected to any real history?

I have watched 10,000BC and have understood the story. But I am curious as to whether the Persian-like Pyramid-building civilization has any link to a real civilization that have existed during those ...
15
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1answer
2k views

Straight Outta Compton - claims of police abuse

I recently saw the film Straight Outta Compton (2015) and found the scenes of police encounters disturbing. Conflict between NWA, the Compton community and the police was a constant undercurrent in ...
14
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2answers
2k views

What is the historic origin of these Indian burial grounds?

I've recently watched two movies that feature the Indian burial ground as a plot point, however in these two films they both actually show a physical burial ground, which appears to be made up of ...
13
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2answers
1k views

How historically accurate is the film “Office Space”?

The film "Office Space" is a comedy about several men in their early 20s who work as software developers for a company called "IniTech". As the film progresses, they endure an unempathetic boss, they ...
12
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1answer
515 views

District 9 - References to Apartheid

How far can the character Wikus be related to that of Biko, and his role to abolish apartheid? I've recently realized the similar phonetics of the name, so it rang a bell and the question immediately ...
12
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3answers
193k views

Is it historically true that Ip Man beat a Japanese General in a martial-art match?

In the film Ip Man (2008), Ip Man fights Japanese Army general Miura in a martial arts match and beats him. Is that incident historically true? If not, what was the real incident?
11
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3answers
1k views

Were gladiators forced to fight in historical reenactments, as they did in “Gladiator”?

In the 2000 movie Gladiator, Maximus is forced to fight in a gladiator coliseum in a reenactment of the Battle of Zama. He is on the team of the Carthaginians, who are expected to lose as they did ...
11
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2answers
3k views

How did the machine work before this realisation?

Perhaps this would fit the History SE or another, but I'm asking here because I don't know how historically accurate the film is. In the film The Imitation Game, Alan Turing's team has created a ...
11
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1answer
9k views

How accurate is Sully?

Beware of minor spoilers if you know nothing about the Hudson Miracle story. How accurate is the movie Sully? The hearing was (according to the movie) public, and I'm guessing most of the facts are ...
11
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1answer
3k views

How accurate is the portrayal of vikings in the TV series Vikings

I'm not too worried about the historical accuracy of the events in the tv series, but my question is specific to the portrayal of the viking's way of life, their appearance etc. I know that we don't ...
10
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1answer
6k views

Have they really escaped from Alcatraz?

In Escape from Alcatraz, nobody had ever escaped from Alcatraz prison, and Frank with two friends tried to escape. However, at the end of the film, we never know if they survived or if they drowned in ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

How true-to-life was 'Joyeux Noel'?

So, some years back, I remember watching an absolutely wonderful film called Joyeux Noel, which is apparently based on actual events during World War I (Namely, the Christmas Truce of 1914). I know ...
10
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2answers
4k views

Is the scene from Rush where Niki Lauda meets his future wife really the way it happened?

A cursory search on the internet points to a few truth vs fact points about the movie "Rush", but none of them addresses the popular scene where Niki Lauda meets and wins over his future wife when he ...
10
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1answer
989 views

Where do the historical accuracies end and fiction begin in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter?

There are innumerable fictions in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (based on Seth Graeme Smith's 2010 novel). From the existence of vampires, to the mass collection of silver to combat the Confederacy'...
10
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1answer
2k views

Does the village of Motunui as depicted in “Moana” accurately depict a Polynesian village?

Moana lives in a village called Motunui (which appears to be an actual place?). We get a fairly in-depth view of how the village works during the song "Where you Are" - there's a chief, he answers ...
10
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1answer
1k views

Which King Henry were Bill and Ted referring to?

In Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, Bill and Ted land in what we are told is "Medieval England." Bill mentions that they are at the castle of King Henry and that they are in 15th century England: ...
9
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3answers
9k views

Any basis for indiscriminate shelling of Five Points in Gangs of New York?

The New York Draft riots of 1863 close The Gangs of New York both in terms of time and content. The most extraordinary element of this sequence is the (apparently) indiscriminate shelling of the Five ...
9
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1answer
3k views

Did Hugo Cabret and other characters really exist?

In Hugo, forgotten Georges Méliès's life, success and master piece films are revealed to us, but the movie was not just about him. It was about the boy Hugo and all his courageous deeds. My question ...
9
votes
1answer
33k views

Did Julius Caesar really get raped by the son of Crassus?

In Spartacus: War of the Damned Episode 8, Tiberius Licinius Crassus raped Julius Caesar to show him his place. Is this event really based on history or was it only done to achieve dramatical effect?
9
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1answer
6k views

Are the events in Black Gold based on fact?

The history of which country is depicted in the movie Black Gold? Is it Qatar? It seems to be, considering the movie is made by France | Italy | Qatar | Tunisia :D And Qatar Being the richest country ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Did the Battle of Iwo Jima really happen on black soil?

In Flags of Our Fathers, there are whole war scenes shot on black soil near some sea. Did the Battle of Iwo Jima really happen on black soil or was this added by the movie production crew?
8
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2answers
6k views

Brad Pitt's weapon in Fury

In Fury, we see Brad Pitt wielding a German manufactured Stg-44 assault rifle-the first ever. My understanding was that they were only issued to some Waffen SS and mostly to fighters on the Eastern ...
8
votes
1answer
11k views

How real is the ending of the movie Ford v Ferrari?

The movie Ford v Ferrari (2019) starring Matt Damon and Christian Bale shows how Ford Motors built a car that beat Ferrari in Le Mans 24 hour race. In the end of the movie, the three Ford cars cross ...
8
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2answers
9k views

Is Billy Breckenridge gay?

In Tombstone, there are certain implications that Billy Breckenridge (portrayed by Jason Priestley) is gay. This is especially noticeable in a particular scene at the theater when a cowboy is ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Could Crocodile Dundee have a Bowie knife in NY

When Mick Dundee first arrived in NY, he went for a walk carrying a Bowie knife on his belt. After a mounted policeman brought him back to his hotel, he gave Mick his knife back. After that scene, ...
8
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1answer
1k views

How accurate was the use of the slogan “Wer hat uns verraten? Sozialdemokraten!”?

In Babylon Berlin S01E07 Gereon Rath attends a party at Bruno's appartment which includes many veterans from the Great War, including Major General Seegers. It seems to be a commemoration of the war ...
8
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1answer
1k views

Is the misquotation “politics is war by other means” by Lyndon B. Johnson authentic?

In the 2016 TV movie All the Way, the character President Lyndon B. Johnson prominently explains (in a voice-over to the audience): Clausewitz said “Politics is war by other means.” … Bullshit. ...
8
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0answers
296 views

In A Man For All Seasons, which lines are historical?

In the film version of A Man For All Seasons, Thomas More (the character) gives several magnificent speeches. The real More was in fact a prolific writer, so I wonder whether the character’s lines are ...
7
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2answers
6k views

How accurate is American Crime Story: OJ Simpson?

Beware of minor spoilers if you know nothing about the OJ Simpson story. How accurate is the series American Crime Story: People V OJ Simpson? All the trials/hearings were televised (according to the ...
7
votes
1answer
528 views

Why do the Vikings warriors train with real weapons?

In the Vikings TV show we often see warriors training with each others using real weapons. This can be seen both for vikings' and other kingdoms' warriors. As far I know warriors used to train with ...
7
votes
0answers
4k views

Why did Spielberg use fictional characters (informants Louis and Papa) in Munich

Background to the Movie Steven Spielberg has said, that the Munich is about vengeance, regret and dilemmas one faces when making hard personal decisions, while visualising empathy and human ...
7
votes
0answers
244 views

Openess about the Pope's children in the Borgias

In the series The Borgias there is a large degree of transparency about the fact that Pope Alexander VI has four children. This is taken to the point where he can marry off said children to political ...
6
votes
1answer
395 views

Why do cars in movies set in earlier eras always look brand new?

Whenever I watch a movie or TV show set in an earlier era, all the cars look brand new. In fact, better than brand new; the paint is rich and deep, highly polished. They all look as though they ...
6
votes
2answers
28k views

What kind of glasses is Ronnie Kray wearing?

In the trailer [Youtube.com] for the upcoming ganster movie Legend, we see Ronnie Kray (cast by Tom Hardy) wearing the following glasses: Are these glasses accurate for the timespan (1950 - 1960)? ...