Miracle on 34th Street (1947) Movie Poster

Goofs from Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

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  • When Kringle is in Sawyer's office, Sawyer is alternately drumming his fingers on desk and twiddling his eyebrow between shots.
  • Outside the courtroom, the shadow of a camera can be seen on the pillar as Kris walks down the hall.
  • After Kris is accused of being mentally ill but before his hearing occurs, newspaper articles are shown on the screen. The headlines say that Kris will have a hearing, which is correct. But the articles say that the hearing has already occurred, and describe what happened in the courtroom. Yet that has not happened yet.
  • The judge looks to the audience's right when looking at his advisor, but the advisor is sitting on the audience's left
  • When Kris is finishing up his examination, Dr. Sawyer is portrayed in a combination of three camera angles. As the angles change his hands go from raised above the desk to palms down on the desk to folded on the desk. The hands change positions continually throughout the scene.
  • Several shots of the judge show a lamp on his desk. When the mail is dumped in front of him, the lamp has disappeared.
  • When Kris is standing on top of the awning at Macy's after the parade, his voice says "You'll find toys of all kinds at Macy's", but his mouth is moving to totally different words.
  • Alfred's hands on the broom change positions between shots.
  • While prosecutor Mara is making his final arguments to the Judge, defense attorney Gailey is out in the hall presumably talking to the postmen. Gailey returns to the courtroom just as Mara finishes his statement. No judge would allow final arguments to proceed in the absence of the attorney for the opposing party.
  • Kris claims that John Quincy Adams' Vice President was Daniel D. Tompkins. In fact, it was John C. Calhoun, while Daniel D. Tompkins had been Vice President under Adams' predecessor, James Monroe. The confusion arose because Adams was the 6th President whereas Tompkins was the 6th Vice President, some Presidents having had a different Vice President in each term, and one of the latter having served under 2 of the former.
  • Kris' license lists one of his reindeer as Donder (Dutch for thunder), yet whenever this name is spoken, the DVD captions (made 50 years after the film) show it as Donner (German translation). Both names are commonly used in popular culture.
  • During the trial Gailey says that the US Post Office was founded on July 26, 1776. It actually was created July 26, 1775, by decree of the Second Continental Congress.
  • One of the letters to Santa Claus delivered by the New York Post Office is postmarked Indianapolis, Ind.
  • At the end of the film, Susan refers to Fred Gailey as her Uncle, this is not mentioned at any other point during the film. During this time period, male adult family friends were often referred to as 'Uncle'. Adult females were ' Aunt'. Addressing an adult by their first name would have been disrespectful. Using Mr. or Miss would have been too formal for the closeness felt for a family friend or in this case, a mother's potential husband.
  • During the examination, Sawyer is tugging on his eyebrow, but a quick cut, and then both his hands are on his desk.
  • Kris claims he can say Merry Christmas in every language. He then goes on to mispronounce the phrase in Russian. It should be pronounced as Srazh-DYEST-vohm.
  • The woman tells Santa that all the department stores are out of the toy fire truck her son wants. Kris directs her to a store that has them. A few scenes later Mr. Shellhammer's secretary goes in to his office to talk to him. Behind her is a toy fire truck, perhaps the one they are supposedly out of.
  • The Macy's Parade is still very much in progress, and a marching band can be heard loudly playing in the background, as Doris enters her high-rise apartment building. Doris' apartment is many levels up, as Susan and Fred can be clearly seen looking downward to watch the parade below from his apartment which is located directly across from Doris', and therefore several minutes must pass between the time Doris enters the apartment building and when she arrives (presumably by elevator), at the entrance to her apartment. After we see Doris enter the apartment building, the very next shot we see of her is at the doorway of her apartment. As she enters her apartment, the parade band outside is still playing the same march, just as loudly as it had been when she had entered the apartment building, and it has not even skipped a beat.
  • When the state rested its case, Gailey could have asked for an immediate dismissal since the state did not meet its burden of proof. 1) The state did not produce expert witnesses to testify on Kris's mental state & 2) Kris was not proven to be a danger to himself or others.
  • When Kris leaves Alfred in the cafeteria and storms into Sawyer's office he has nothing in his hand. During his entire conversation with Sawyer his right hand is always free to gesture. The umbrella he uses to bop Sawyer on the head was sitting on the desk and he can be seen picking it up just before hitting Sawyer.
  • Kris enters the curbside back door of the cab taking him to Bellevue before another gentleman enters, but once inside the cab Kris is seated on the curbside.
  • After Tommy Mara leaves the witness stand, he goes over to Kris Kringle to remind him not to forget to bring him a football helmet. Kris Kringle tells him not to worry, he'll get the helmet, indicating that he (Santa) will be bringing him one. But after the case is over, the D.A. (Tommy's father) comments that he has to go buy a football helmet, indicating that he will be the one giving it to his son. This is completely in character with Kris Kringle in this movie as he often is seen directing/guiding parents to finding the right presents for their children rather than giving these presents himself. Ultimately, the outcome is that Tommy gets the football helmet, so Kris has honoured his promise.
  • RH Macy passed away in 1877. No way he could have been affiliated with the store in the 1940's.
  • Shellhammer says he made his wife's martinis triple strength. A typical martini is already pure alcohol. A "triple strength" version could only be one that is triple in size.
  • In the opening scene, none of the model reindeer have any identifying marks. Kris is nitpicking generic looking figurines that the shop owner could never have intended to be any specific reindeer.
  • Kris says that Daniel D. Tompkins was the Vice President under John Quincy Adams. Daniel D. Tompkins was not VP under Adams. That position went to John C. Calhoun for all four years of JQA's presidency (1825-1829). Tompkins was James Monroe's VP from 1817-1825 (both of Monroe's terms). Tompkins was the last VP to serve two terms until Wilson's VP. The confusion probably stems from the fact that John Quincy Adams was the 6th President, and Daniel D. Tompkins was the 6th Vice President. But Tompkins served under the 5th President (James Monroe) and Calhoun (the 7th Vice President) served under the 6th President (John Quincy Adams).
  • After Tommy Mara Jr gives his testimony, Fred Gailey lifts him out of the witness stand without an opportunity for cross examination. Neither the judge nor the prosecutor seems to notice this procedural oversight. (Even if offered the opportunity for cross examination, the prosecutor would most certainly decline, so this goof helps keep the story moving.)
  • When Gailey is explaining to the judge that people who are who they believe themselves to be are not unbalanced, he states that Kris is Santa Claus, to which the judge quickly responds "But he isn't." Gailey should have immediately asked for a new hearing, because the judge has obviously made a decision and revealed it in open court before the hearing has concluded.
  • When Kris and Alfred talk during lunch, the level of milk in Alfred's bottle changes slightly between shots.
  • When Kris talks to Susan while she is in bed, the covers are pushed back on top of her. In the next shot, they lie flat.
  • When Tommy Jr. testifies at the trial, his hands are clasped in his lap in longer shots, but behind his back in close-ups.
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