Factual error: Karen points out to Thelma that she should have given a nasal swab (to detect internal contamination) after being 'cooked', yet on both occasions when Karen is being scrubbed after being contaminated she has blisters all over her face - something which should be avoided when performing decontamination as this can allow contamination to enter the body.
Factual error: Before 1949, when the part of the film set in Hollywood takes place, the famous sign on the mountain read "Hollywoodland", not "Hollywood". The sign had been allowed to deteriorate and during that year, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce offered to remove the last four letters and repair the rest.
Factual error: When both Erica and Courtney are racing, you can see mountains in the background, although there are no mountains in Houston, their hometown.
Factual error: A woman is shown receiving electroshock treatment ("ECT") in a hospital scene which took place in 1928. Although chemicals were used to induce seizures in psychiatric treatments at the time, the use of electricity for the purpose was not discovered until 1937 and not used in the United States until 1940.
Factual error: In the scene where Chaplin and his wife are traveling to Europe by ship (when they find out Hoover has expelled him from the U.S.), the film shows the French Liner "Normandie" as it is leaving New York. The date shown on the film says September 1952. The "Normandie" however, was destroyed by fire in New York Harbor on February 9, 1942 as it was being converted into a U.S. troop ship for World War II. Incidentally, they filmed the scene on the R.M.S. Queen Mary in Long Beach, California, which in reality is probably the ship that the Chaplins actually took to Europe.
Factual error: Marie Antoinette has moved into her new vacation home following the birth of her daughter. Her friends are visiting, she is walking through the field of wildflowers, and she blows a ladybug off her finger. The camera pans upward to show her gazing at the sky. There is a very obvious vapor-trail from a large airliner cutting through the center of the camera shot, from one side of the screen to the opposite, predating jet-liners by over 150 years. (01:25:25)
Factual error: One of the operetta excerpts shown in the movie is the humorous song "This Helmet I Suppose," during which Princess Ida's three brothers are supposed to remove their armor piece by piece, finding it heavy, hot and awkward. Partly as a result of this, the three are soon afterwards quickly and easily defeated in combat. In the film, however, only Arac, the brother singing the verses (played by Richard Temple (played by Timothy Spall)), removes his armor. The others simply stand still. (This might have made the battle scene end differently if it was shown on screen!)
Factual error: The middle third of the film recounts Dr. Thompson meeting Laszlo at the 1972 Superbowl (VI) in Los Angeles, however, in 1972 the game was played in New Orleans.
Factual error: The movie takes place in Connecticut from 1961-1986. All the cars in the movie have license plates on their front bumpers, but Connecticut didn't require front plates until just a few years ago (late 90s-early 00s).
Factual error: When the convictions are overturned, the defendants' solicitor, Gareth Pearce (played by Emma Thompson) is shown arguing their case in court. In England solicitors cannot appear in the higher courts, and in fact a barrister presented the case. However, the film is 'dramatically correct' because it was Gareth Pearce who got them freed, and the barrister in question is far too full of herself without having the honour of being portrayed by Emma T.
Factual error: When Malcolm is talking on the telephone in an extreme close up, you can see the connector on the phone is one of the modern snap-in modular jacks. Telephones in the 1960's did not have those.
Factual error: "Can't take my eyes off you" was released in May 1967. The recording scene of this song shows an Ampeg SVT amplifier in the background. Ampeg SVT was not available before 1969 and the specific model shown on the scene (with white rocker toggle) is a later 1976-1979 model. (01:54:10)
Factual error: At Liberace's funeral, when the priest concludes his prayer, the congregation responds, "And with your Spirit." This response has only been part of the English-language Catholic Mass since 2011. In 1987, the response would have been "And also with you."