Doctor Zhivago (1965) Movie Poster

Goofs from Doctor Zhivago (1965)

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  • The book on the table in front of Tonya changes position and its cover rises a bit when Yevgraf sits down.
  • When Yuri runs to a window in the Varykino estate to watch Lara leave with Komarovsky, he brushes against a banister covered in icicles. The icicles swing, revealing that they are fake.
  • When Yuri gets off a trolley and enters a house, David Lean is reflected in the glass door.
  • When Komarovsky meets Lara and she is wearing a red dress, he forces her to drink, holding her fist. In the following shot he pushes her drinking cup with his fingers.
  • The Urals are gradually rising mountains, not snow-capped peaks visible from perfectly flat steppes.
  • When Yevgraf gives Tonya the book of poems, the authors are listed only by their initials. He says that he's not the author, and that Y. A. Zhivago stands for Yuri Andreevich Zhivago. The book is written in Cyrillic, so Yevgraf and Yuri's names would start with different letters.
  • The protest parade is supposed to take place on a bitterly cold night. Nobody's breath is visible, and observers on the balcony put their hands in "snow" on the railing.
  • In a close-up of the crowd during the peaceful protest, their mouth movements don't match the soundtrack.
  • When Yuri, Lara, and her daughter are in the sleigh on the way to the ice palace, close-up shots show the three of them in the sleigh. When the sleigh goes over a bump in the wide shot, only the driver is in the sleigh.
  • While Katya plays with a toy horse, Yuri is sitting behind her with his head turned to his right. In the subsequent shot, his head is turned to the left.
  • In an early pre-Revolution scene, Komarovsky says to Lara, "I want to avoid Kropotkin Street." Before the Revolution, the street was called Prechistenka. Kropotkin was an anarchist, and a street would never have been named for him in Tsarist Russia.
  • When Dr. Zhivago first arrives in Moscow, he boards a tram on Tverskaya street. A statue of Yuri Dolgoruky, founder of Moscow, is in the background. The statue was placed there in 1947, for the 800th anniversary of Moscow's founding in 1147.
  • The city railroad scenes were filmed in Spain, and many of the forest railroad scenes were filmed in Finland, countries with broad gauge railways (rails more than 5 feet apart). The plains and mountain railroad scenes were largely shot in Canada, where the rails are standard gauge (4 feet 8.5 inches apart). The distance between rails changes throughout the movie.
  • When Zhivago gets back to civilization after deserting the Red Partisans, he is almost run over by a train. After jumping out of the way, he asks a man in front of the train station where he is. The sign on the station is supposed to say "Yuriyatin", but two letters are transposed, making it "Yuryaitin."
  • In the desertion scene, after the speaking officer is shot and falls in the water barrel, several extras are clearly speaking Spanish.
  • During protest parade, the text on the banner reads "Svoboda i bratsvo" (Freedom and Fraternity), instead of "Svoboda i bratstvo".
  • Much of the Cyrillic in the film is post-Soviet Cyrillic, not the version used in Tsarist Russia.
  • The little girl who plays Tonya at Yuri's mothers funeral starts to cross herself in the Roman Catholic manner, but quickly corrects herself and finishes in the Russian Orthodox style.
  • Throughout the movie, church bells ring randomly or even "change ring", as in western Europe, the UK, and the Americas. Russian churches have always used "zvon" ringing, in which the high bells playing exactly 2 or 3 times faster than the bass bell.
  • The deacons at Yuri's mother's funeral and the parade where Yevgraf joins the army wear their stole on the wrong side. It should be buttoned to the top of the robe on the left side, not right.
  • Before Yuri Zhivago runs to catch the tram, Yuri Dolgoruky's statue is behind him. In the next scene, when Zhivago starts running toward the tram, the same statue is far ahead.
  • (at around 1h 40 mins) The balalaika player's finger movements don't correspond to the music, rhythmically or melodically.
  • When Komarovkski and Lara leave the ice palace, a set of tracks is in the snow in front of the sleigh.
  • In the teaching lab, Yuri's view through the microscope is time-lapse footage of what appear to be live cancer cells from culture. In real time, the cells move so slowly that it's barely noticeable, even through a microscope.
  • When Yuri is bored on a snowy winter day, his wife and father-in-law encourage him to go to the library in Uriati, not far from his home. When he arrives in Uriati and meets Lara again, he finds blowing leaves and green grass.
  • Many female extras have 1960s hair and makeup.
  • The Yuriatin Estate is 231 kilometers (143 miles) from Moscow, yet Doctor Zhivago and his family were on the train for at least 36 hours.
  • In the movie, Varykino is in Siberia, east of Moscow. In real life, the city is west of Moscow.

Spoilers

  • The frame story (in which Zhivago's half-brother finds his and Lara's daughter) is set in the 1960s, but the daughter, who was born around 1920, is in her early 20s. In the novel, the frame story is set in World War II.
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