Factual error: In circling over Washington Dulles, a plane would fly over several airports that they could land at with perfect communication, including Richmond, Baltimore, Andrews AFB, etc. Also, there is no communication from the airport to the plane but the plane would be in range of no fewer than 15 transmitting stations that could have relayed messages.
Die Hard 2 (1990)
Directed by: Renny Harlin
Starring: Bruce Willis, William Sadler, Bonnie Bedelia, John Amos
Factual error: It is impossible for a stream of burning jet fuel to follow a plane through snow and catch up. Not only is jet fuel extremely hard to ignite, almost as soon as the plane was off the ground the fuel stream would be too dispersed for the flame to climb up into the tank, and even if not it wouldn't burn fast enough to catch the plane.
Plot hole: The only reason the terrorists' plot can work is that the airports around Dulles are all closed to landings because of the violent snowstorm. If there were no storm, the pilots of the airliners in the holding pattern would simply divert to nearby airports when they started running low on fuel. If they were able to do that, the whole plot would simply fall apart. How were the terrorists able to count on the storm happening on the very day General Esperanza's flight was due to land? They didn't have any influence over the date of his flight. How did they know the storm would be so bad that all airports would be closed - except Dulles? I don't think they had any way of predicting the weather quite that accurately, and If the storm hadn't hit or had been even slightly less severe the pilots of the stranded airliners could easily have diverted to any one of half a dozen alternate landing sites, including a nearby Air Force base. They could do this without consulting or even contacting air traffic control. The whole plot falls apart from there - no hostages, no leverage, and who cares what happens to the people on Esperanza's plane? They'd have it shot down as soon as they knew Esperanza had killed the pilot and taken over the flight.
Suggested correction: The terrorists in the film planned extensively for this operation, but the storm occurring may have just been a coincidence for them. They may also have had the plan waiting for a perfect opportunity, like a snowstorm. In the beginning of the movie, there's a news story on while the Colonel is exercising nude. The story says Esperanza's extradition has been long and drawn out, until a phone call from..." and he cuts the TV off. Given his connections, Colonel Stewart may well have been able to arrange a State Department call the week of a predicted snow storm. Esperanza's adherents may also have been able. Another scenario they may have had is to take the Air Traffic Controllers hostage (as they did) and have the other aircraft diverted for a supposed emergency, but the snowstorm worked out. Whatever the case, that element of the plot is an interesting discussion, not a mistake.
If the storm hadn't hit the pilots of the stranded airliners could easily have diverted to any one of half a dozen alternates, including a nearby Air Force base. They could do this without consulting or even contacting air traffic control. The whole plot falls apart from there - no hostages, no leverage, and who cares what happens to the people on the Esperanza's plane? They'd have it shot down.
That bothered me too when I first saw this in theatres. The chances of it snowing in D.C. on any particular day are pretty low, and the plan falls apart without it. The only way to 'fix' this is to assume that when the film was originally written, it was set in New York City. This makes more sense thematically...with the original set in Los Angeles. But at some point, probably late in the production, they changed it to D.C. for some reason, and made it fit as best they could.
The snowstorm was not part of the plan. Early on when the group of terrorists is sitting around the table about to exchange the package, Cochran is listening to a weather report and states that a huge storm is approaching, which makes the other men smile and one of them responds "God loves the infantry." The terrorists could still crash planes without the snow storm because they could impersonate the tower. The planes that are circling overhead are the planes that didn't have enough fuel to be diverted to another airport and that has nothing to do with a snow storm. The blizzard was simply fortuitous for the terrorists.
The airliners we see could easily glide to any one of seven nearby airports from the airspace over Dulles, let alone fly there when fuel began running low.
That is a separate issue (and is indeed a mistake in the film) that doesn't really have anything to do with the blizzard. This film acts as if Baltimore Washington International or Richmond International Airport don't exist.
And since they do, it is both a plot hole and a factual error. If they had called their fictional airport Springfield International, fine, but they didn't. They identified it as Dulles International which is within easy flying - or gliding - time to half a dozen other airports.
This is possible that other airports were closed due to bad weather.
Which necessitates the terrorists knowing that! They had to know the storm was coming for their plan to work. The stranded airlines could easily have diverted to an alternative even if that meant gliding, and they could do so without consulting air traffic control.
The terrorist obviously knew that. They are very arrogant and planned everything very accurately. They knew that other airports are closed because of the bad weather.
The airports were closed AFTER Esperanza's flight took off. The storm is an essential part of the terrorist's plans. Storms like the one we see can can diminish very rapidly or veer away from their original course (I have seen both happen) and cannot, ever, be counted on to the meticulous extent the terrorists do.
Trivia: When being played on basic cable or regular TV, John McClane's catchphrase "Yippee ki yay, mother fucker!" is sometimes oddly redubbed as "Yippee ki yay, Mr. Falcon!" Falcon is the call sign for General Esperanza's original flight, which half explains the odd wording.
Trivia: Producers of the movie were concerned that actual terrorists could use the information in the film to disrupt airport/airplane communications in real life. Most of the "sensitive" information in the film is not only wrong, it is purposely misleading to prevent terrorists from attempting what we see in the movie.
Trivia: The film is based on a book called "58 Minutes" by Walter Wager. In the book, it is the hero's young daughter, not his wife, that is on one of the planes.
McClane: Hey, don't I know you?
Col. Stuart: No, I get that a lot. I've been on TV.
McClane: Yeah, me too.
Gen. Esperanza: Freedom.
[John McClane appears and punches him in the face.]
John McClane: Not yet.
John McClane: Hey Carmine, let me ask you a question. When you go through the airport metal detector, what sets it off first? The lead in your ass or the shit in your brains?
Question: Why was McClane introduced in the first Die Hard movie as a New York badge, and in the second Die Hard movie as a L.A. badge? Then in the third Die Hard movie, he's again a New York cop.
Answer: In the first movie he's a New York cop visiting his wife. In the second Die Hard, he tells the airport officer that he's LAPD and moved there because of his wife's job. In the third Die Hard film, he most likely went back to New York because of marital problems and became a New York cop again.
Question: When McClane ejected from the cockpit of the military plane, why didn't Colonel Stewart and his men shoot him while he was in the air? These men deliberately crashed a commercial plane killing innocent civilians and by doing this, it's obvious that they are ruthless, so why wouldn't they try to kill their main enemy when he is at his most vulnerable? (With the weapons the soldiers had, McClane was still in range to be hit.) Can someone explain this for me?
Answer: Because the police were moments away from arriving at the scene. They needed as much time to get away without being tracked. Every moment counts. And a target rocking about a few hundred feet in the air doesn't seem to be such an "easy target".
Question: How could McClane tell that the ammo in the blue labeled magazine were blanks?
Answer: If you listen, he says something to the effect of "I know I had that guy in my sights", meaning he is amazed he missed. So he checks the bullets in the magazine to see if that's the problems. Blanks are simply shells with no bullet that are crimped shut to hold the powder in. The difference between blanks and live rounds is very obvious even at a glance.
Answer: Just before the attack on the church, Grant and his team switch the red taped clips from their weapons with blue taped clips. The blue clips carried blanks and the red clips carried real ammo. After firing on a guy but not hitting him, McClane checked the clip and realised that the gun he used had blanks and that Grant and his team were involved with freeing Esperanza.
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Suggested correction: If jet fuel was hard to ignite then it would be a poor choice of agent to power an engine.
You show very little understanding of how fuels work and you're confusing flammability with combustibility. Jet fuel has to be heated to over 100°F before it can combust. A trail of jet fuel on the snow would be too cold to ignite (which was the main point of the mistake).
Bishop73 is right: kerosene is a lot like diesel. Try setting light to diesel.