E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial Movie Poster

Goofs from E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial

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  • Elliott crashes his bike during the chase through the new housing development, but is back in the pack an impossibly short time later.
  • In the 20th Aniversary Edition, when Elliott is showing E.T. the bathroom and is then on the phone with his mother, the Coke can changes designs. At first, it is the older version from 1982, then it changes to the updated 2002 can design. It switches back and forth for the entire length of the scene.
  • When the boys are playing around the kitchen table, the cigarette and ashtray disappear.
  • When E.T. gets on his ship, Elliott's mother gets up twice, and Elliott is (not) holding his dog by the collar.
  • When E.T. is alone in the house and misspells "nuisance" on the toy, we see that the back panel has been removed, but in the next shot the panel is back on. Later, when E.T. drags the blanket with the "phone" ingredients on it, the panel is back off.
  • [20th Anniversary Edition] The government agents and police have had their hand guns replaced with walkie-talkies, but they are still extending their trigger fingers for no apparent reason.
  • When E.T. takes a can of beer from the fridge, we see Harvey the dog bark twice - but we don't hear the first bark.
  • Gertie's hamburger changes size and eventually disappears (inconsistent with her eating it).
  • After one of the kids whips off his balaclava and says, "We made it!" during the bike chase, a hoard of government agents rush into the street behind him. In the next shot of Michael reacting, his friend takes off the balaclava again and the agents run into the street again.
  • When Elliott goes to sleep outside to look for E.T., the moon is directly behind him. When he is awakened several hours later, the moon is in the same position.
  • The first time E.T. makes Elliott's bike fly, E.T.'s sheet goes from opened to wrapped tightly in alternating views - wrapped in far shots, opened in close-ups.
  • When Gertie is waiting with the bike at the rendezvous, the sun is just about to set behind the mountains. Yet there is still plenty of daylight for the Halloween street scenes. The sun is then shown much higher above a smaller foothill. Finally, when the kids and E.T. meet up at the bicycle, the sun has just dropped below the mountain peak.
  • Elliott is given money and told to wait for the pizza guy outside, indicating the pizza has been ordered and on its way. But a line or two later, the boys ask him to make sure he orders lots of pepperoni and sausage. He is then seen outside meeting the driver at the foot of the driveway.
  • At the beginning when the men are searching for E.T., the keys on the "Key Man" keep changing sides between shots.
  • When "Keys" goes inside the Clean room created for E.T. and Elliott, he and others wear a "Clean Suit", but the tubes coming out of the helmet go nowhere, not even a filter, meaning they are breathing contaminated air and that the suit is useless.
  • When Mary reads "Peter Pan" to Gertie, there's a view of her silhouette on the closet door slats. Her lips don't match the narration.
  • When the boys are racing away on their bicycles from the Feds, the stunt doubles for Elliott and his friends are obviously way too tall to be children.
  • When Elliott thinks E.T. is dying, and is talking to him through the window of the box, the towel that is wrapped around Elliott keeps changing position - sometimes it is wrapped tightly around his neck, and other times it reveals a bit of his left side.
  • One of the boys moves his lips in sync with Elliott's line, "Nobody go out there."
  • The size of the eye holes on E.T's ghost outfit change shape and size several times (most noticeable when Michael finds the abandoned outfit when he is looking for E.T.)
  • When the plastic hallway with the scientists in it detaches from the speeding van, the ramp that was seen in the shots before is gone.
  • In addition to the other lunar errors, at first we see a crescent moon then the famous full moon being crossed by the bicycles (later to become Amblin Entertainment's signature logo). From thin crescent to full moon takes about half a lunar cycle, 14 days, but the time frame of the movie suggested only a few days at most.
  • When Elliott, Michael, and E.T. arrive at the park after escaping the scientists, a ramp can be seen where they drive over the curb.
  • Some are confused when E.T. magically heals Elliott's cut finger that the blood disappears. E.T.'s true powers are not fully known so it is possible E.T. made the blood go back into his body along with healing the wound.
  • Near the beginning of the film, when the trucks race through the woods approaching the expected location of the spaceship landing, one of the trucks "screeches" when it stops. A vehicle's tires would not screech on wet, muddy ground.
  • As Michael leads Mary into the bathroom where Elliott and E.T. lay sick, the camera dollies backwards, brushing past and visibly disturbing an indoor bamboo tree.
  • [20th Anniversary edition] When E.T. is eating potato salad and drinking beer in front of the refrigerator during the scene when he is alone at home, the shadow of his head cast on the fridge door is that of the original puppet, not the CGI head.
  • The street the boys turn onto during the chase when the boy says "we made it" isn't the same street as they had turned into. There should have been houses, but instead, there were just trees and cars.
  • When Elliott returns with a snack for a frightened E.T. hiding among stuffed animals in his toy closet and asks "want a Coke?", the stuffed animals around E.T. fall down, knocking off some chips from Elliott's plate on to the animals. There are already chips on one of the animals as it falls, before it has a chance to actually touch the plate (possibly left behind from earlier takes).
  • Almost everything about the phases and appearance of the moon is wrong for the northern hemisphere.
  • The silhouette of the mime wearing the E.T. gloves can be seen through the railing when Elliott is luring E.T. with the Reese's Pieces.
  • When E.T. is walking outside during Halloween, the eye holes on his sheet are far apart and only one is matched up to his eyes. However, the shots of what E.T. is seeing through his sheet show the two eye holes lined up close together.
  • When E.T. runs through the swing set he sets everything moving. The far shot of Elliott shows the two-man swing is stationary. In the next close shot it is moving again.
  • When Elliott and his four companions "land" their bikes in the forest on their way to the spaceship, there are clearly six sets of bike wheels landing, not just five.
  • When Elliott disconnects the tunnel and two men from the back of the van, the men's air hoses remain attached to the van as it speeds away, however the air hoses are gone a second later when the van is shown from a different camera angle.
  • When E.T. spies on Gertie and her mom reading the bedtime story, the set of blinds open in the closet door changes between shots. When we see E.T. from behind looking into the bedroom, the blinds in the middle of the door, just above his head are open. When we see E.T.'s face from the front, the blinds in the bottom third of the closet are open, at and below his eye level, and the middle blinds are closed. The set of open blinds changes back and forth between shots.
  • When Elliott and his brother first try to drive away in the government van and are caught, the agents crowd around and in front of the truck. But moments later the van drives off easily with no one in front of it.
  • In the shot of the spaceship taking off at the end, all of the people surrounding it on the ground have disappeared.
  • When Elliott burps in the classroom, his pencil disappears during several shots. The papers on his desk change position several times.
  • When Elliott and E. T. have finished saying goodbye, Dee Wallace can be seen in the background rising to her feet (next to "keys"). The next shot is from a medium distance, and Wallace is once again shown rising to her feet.
  • After E.T. has apparently died, one of the medical staff is dictating a report and says; "Cardiac arrest was terminated at 1500 hours and 36 minutes". "Cardiac arrest" is a way of saying that the heart has stopped, so it makes no sense to stay that cardiac arrest had been terminated. The line should have been either; "Cardiac arrest occurred at 1500 hours and 36 minutes" or "Cardiac activity terminated at 1500 hours and 36 minutes".
  • Towards the end when the kids are riding bikes down the hill, after they ride past a cop car they round the corner behind a housing development and you can see Elliott or the rider in the red hoodie wipe out. In the next scene they are riding as if uninterrupted.
  • When the boys are being chased by the government agents, you see the same houses and intersections multiple times from different angles.
  • When E.T. is typing on the toy, he presses the "E" button when we hear the toy say "F" in the spelling "S-W-V-U-A-F-P".
  • Right before E.T. reads the Buck Rogers comic he yawns and rubs his head. While he is doing this, you can just barely see the crew moving in the corner of the oven reflection.
  • The movie is set in California and there are several police cars when the government comes to the house and pursues the kids to catch E.T. The front of the police cars are missing a steady red light. Even during the time the movie was made, in California, all police and emergency vehicles in California require at least one steady red light facing forward.
  • The kids on the school bus would not be allowed out of their seats throwing paper wads at each other.


  • E.T.'s potted plant is suddenly much larger when Gertie and Mary are in the car right before the bicycle chase gets underway. The plant returns to its original, smaller size when Gertie gives it back to E.T. before he leaves.
  • At the end, when E.T. and Elliott are hugging, when the camera is behind E.T., Elliott's arms are all the way around him, but when the camera is behind Elliott, his hands are on E.T.'s shoulders.
  • When E.T.'s being chased by the government workers and running back to the spaceship, you see a pole behind E.T. pushing him. This is right before you see the alien in the spaceship as it's leaving.
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