Factual error: After showing a picture from 1955 when he was eight, the narrator (Shayne) states that he was fifteen by 1962. The story begins with his mother getting fired from her job at a potato chip factory and making the decision that night to move the next morning. The family moves from L.A. to Kingston, Idaho. Shayne's mother Fran tells Mr. Moon that they (she and whatever work her kids do for him around the house) want paid "minimum wage plus 10%" to pay for the land and when she gets hired at the bowling alley she is told the job pays "minimum wage" (plus any tips, which "ain't much"). Idaho did not establish a minimum wage until 1963, a year (or some months) later. The narrator even asserted at the beginning "This is a true story. It really happened to me." (00:20:03 - 00:23:47)
Factual error: In the final scene where Solomon was reunited with his family, the doors he entered the room through had Edwardian style leadlight glass. The movie was set about 50 years before this style.
Visible crew/equipment: While young Joan is lying in the field next to the sword, in the far right corner you can see a pair of legs and a camera lens pointed at the actress. (00:06:35)
Factual error: When the camera took a shot on a train coming to a station in Czechoslovakia, you can see electric cables above the train tracks. There was no such thing in Czechoslovakia as electrified trains in the 1940's. The electrification started in the 1950's. (00:01:05)
Factual error: In the scene where the young Helen Goff is traveling by train with her family, it's obvious that an American engine and coaches have been used, instead of a Queensland Rail locomotive of the era. None of the QR locomotives had flared smokestacks like on the one seen in the movie. The coaches are also incorrect - as far as I know, none of the Queensland Rail wood coaches had clerestory roofs with a set of windows in them like seen in the movie. When Helen looks out the back of the train, it's also obvious that the tracks are spaced at 'standard gauge' (4' 8.5"). They should be closer together, as railways in Queensland are built to 3'6" gauge instead. There is also no such company as the 'Queensland Victoria Railway Co', as marked on the coaches, as all railways in Australia are state owned.
Factual error: In the early part of the movie, there is a shot of the outside of Triple O's bar. The scene takes place in 1975 and "Coors" is advertised on the outside of the bar. Coors beer was not available in Boston/East Coast in 1975. It was only available from the 1980's.
Other mistake: The Sydney harbor scenes have the backdrop of the opera house. The buildings (aka "The Toaster") beside the opera house were not completed until 1998. The film was set in 1976-77.
Other mistake: When Reinaldo first meets Lezaro Lima after winning "First Honorable Mention" for the National Book contest, Lezaro tells Reinaldo he can read any five books he wants. Lezaro names titles of books he'd like Reinaldo to read. The subtitle in English on the U.S. region DVD misspells Robert Louis Stevenson, spelling his middle name "Lewis". (00:32:05)
Factual error: An old man appears with children following him. This is supposed to be pedagogue Janusz Korczak. It appeared as if he was just wearing a suit and a Jewish arm band. In the Warsaw Ghetto, Mr. Korczak never wore an arm band and wore his WWI Polish Army Uniform, both as acts of defiance. He was beaten and almost put to death (he had connections) for not wearing an arm band so having one on in the movie is inaccurate.
Revealing mistake: When the farmer is going to shoot the sign the bank put up, you can very well see the mark where the hole is going to appear.
Factual error: Joan's brother Pierre did not die at the fight at Paris. He actually outlived her and testified at her Trial of Rehabilitation.
Factual error: Near the end of the movie, a DJ announces over the air that the crash had occurred that killed Buddy Holly, J.P. Richardson (commonly known as "The Big Bopper"), and Ritchie Valens. The DJ then plays the Santo & Johnny tune "Sleep Walk" as a tribute to the lost musicians. The crash occurred on Feb 3, 1959 (and one would assume the radio news announcement was within 24 hours of the crash). The song "Sleep Walk" was not released until July 1959.
Factual error: Halfway into the film, a scene shows Capote talking on a beige telephone. The receiver is a modular (plug in) type. Modular phones were not introduced until after 1966. The time frame for this movie is 1959 through 1963. All other scenes in this movie show the correct type of receiver (wired, not plug-in).