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Hollywood, guns, and history - common misconceptions

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I'm getting the guns out on this one. Hollywood gets a lot wrong with guns, from physics problems that Mythbusters have shown, to stupid handling. Possibly the worst offense though is the historical problems. Here is a brief diatribe on the problem. ------------------------------------------------------------ more videos: The 2nd Amendment According to the Supreme Court: https://youtu.be/_63QPZ3Rbd8 How gun control works in America - Cynical Cypher: https://youtu.be/N2M0JGoUo8s ------------------------------------------------------------ SUBSCRIBE FOR MORE VIDEOS: http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=CynicalCypher88 LET'S CONNECT: https://www.facebook.com/cynicalcypher88 https://twitter.com/Cynical_History ------------------------------------------------------------ Hashtags: #history #guns #Hollywood #misconceptions #movies
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Text Comments (148)
50Stone (14 days ago)
The one that drives me crazy the most is the common cliche scene with a character pulling the trigger of a semi-automatic handgun that's empty gun at an enemy not knowing it's empty and it going click, come on everyone knows the slide locks back on an empty, everyone in view will know it's empty, and the owner most of all...
Matthew Martin (15 days ago)
I don't really blame them for miss using guns. But I understand where your coming from.
Ethan Rhodes (19 days ago)
Bro you have a really nice gun collection
Fox Mulder (1 month ago)
hollywood gets typing on a keyboard wrong all the time
basically hell (1 month ago)
1:02 but thats a remington new army
basically hell (1 month ago)
To understand wars you must understand the weapons used
walter chiappini (1 month ago)
Its interesting to think that the US was so innovative in guns n the mid 1800's but had to adopt the Krag as a military weapon before the SA war. Then it stole the Mauser design for the Springfield. It also revamped the British design for the 1917 US Enfield. Maxim was American The Mauser bros worked for Remington. The Remington owners invested n the Mause rs factory. None of the US models were up to date by the late 1800's. Browning was a great designer of course. I just find the dropoff in innovation odd.
walter chiappini (1 month ago)
In the cap and ball revolver era you got multiple rapid shots by carrying multiple guns. Jesse James and others of the border guerillas carried 6 guns loaded. Of course with the early Remington pistol u carried multiple cylinders. I note movie guns are kind of altered for easier use. Eastwoods Walker Colts in Josey Wales used cartridges not cap and ball. Most people dont.know onegun from another. The Last Samurai was a complete farce from many aspects.
The Cynical Historian (1 month ago)
+walter chiappini PR was what Brigham Young called his "avenging angel." It wasn't just that PR was a Mormon, he was acting on behalf of Mormonism
walter chiappini (1 month ago)
I never heard of PR. As for being a Mormon, The Sundance Kid was raised Mormon. I dont really acribe anything extra peaceful for being a Mormon. They are prettycommon in the west and I guess they just went bad.
The Cynical Historian (1 month ago)
+walter chiappini Dunno how, but Rockwell was a world famous gunslinger until people realized his Mormon violence didn't fit the mythical archetype
walter chiappini (1 month ago)
100 shots and he carried? He.must have had some heavy duty belts or suspenders!!! I think they had them in saddle holsters. They shot and dropped them. They were tied on with lanyard ds. I would just stick them back in the holster.
The Cynical Historian (1 month ago)
the most famous example of that was Porter Rockwell who supposedly walked around with enough guns to fire 100+ rounds without reloading
Eric Hulett (2 months ago)
Hey man i generally like your stuff but your lack of muzzle discipline in this was killing me. Rewatch this and count the number of times you put body parts in front of the boom hole. You even sweep your arm and hand when there was clearly one in the chamber while demonstrating the gun was not safe.
The Cynical Historian (2 months ago)
notice trigger discipline though. In a video like this, ligaments are bound to get in the way. The only loaded weapon in this was the demonstration, save for the Remington (substituting for a Colt 1860) which had loaded chambers without caps, because I had some malfunctions on the range that day - but no caps=no boom. plus the Ruger P95 was on safe when loaded. I take this stuff seriously (actually trained as a range instruction by the NRA when I was younger, plus Army stuff), but you have to make certain sacrifices for video production
Daniel Watters (2 months ago)
The wild thing in pre-WW2 films was the use of live ammunition for special effects like bullets breaking glass or striking walls. While they moved away from conventional ammunition, some SFX specialists resorted to the use of air rifles firing pellets to depict near misses in the dirt and off rocks. One slightly more safety conscious gun wrangler would fire pill capsules filled with dust.
Daniel Watters (2 months ago)
FWIW: Double-action revolvers were available from Colt as early as the late 1870s. The modern revolver with a side-swinging cylinder would follow barely more than a decade later. By the way, you can catch the occasional Colt New Service (or other modern double-action revolvers) modified by prop houses with M1873 SAA barrels and ejector rods. Another common vismod was to remove the forearm from a Winchester Model 1892 to make a faux Henry rifle.
Stefan Sharak (2 months ago)
1:05 that’s a Remington not a colt.
Larry Gruel (2 months ago)
What about setting a cannon off with a torch? No body with black powder experice would have an open flame any where near exposed powder.
Tate Jackson (2 months ago)
Your 1860 Colt is a New Model Army Remington
The Cynical Historian (2 months ago)
already noted in the pinned comment
Judean People's Front (3 months ago)
Jesus effin christ Cypher
CarrowMind (3 months ago)
Just imagine, in 50 years time they'll be making movies about the Middle East wars of the 2000's and depict US soldiers running around using M16 rifles from the 60's.
Der Kaiser (3 months ago)
To be fair, in the last samurai they switched over to using Mauser 1871/84's after modernising.
Robert Power (4 months ago)
anyone else feel giddy just looking at all those guns?
Colonizer-Chan (4 months ago)
Hollywood makes movies, not use weapons. If they actually knew anything about guns, they’d make movies in Texas.
Dubsy 102 (4 months ago)
Sorry to nitpick, but around 3:20 you say they would be using an Arisaka. This simply isn't true, the Arisaka Type 30 was introduced into service around 1899, and the movie is set in roughly 1877. At this point, they weren't even using the Murata, they relied on imports, mostly early breech loaders like the Snider-Enfield. It isn't completely impossible they would be using a muzzleloader either.
Dubsy 102 (4 months ago)
It also kind of sets me off when you talk about magazine repeaters in 1871 like it's so simple and obvious. Only the Swiss were doing it, with the tube magazine Vetterli. Frankly, to talk like that about it makes it sound like you have a mediocre at best understanding of that history, particularly since this considerably predates box magazines like that in the Arisaka, which should be an immediate red flag. Multiple weapons, like the single shot breechloader Mauser 71, the single shot breechloader Martini-Henry were introduced in 1871, but the Arisaka was not one of them.
Schuyler Thackeray (4 months ago)
That ain't no Colt; that sir is a Remington New Model.
azraphon (4 months ago)
Wow that’s... some guns. Dear America: are you okay? Would you like to talk?
azraphon (4 months ago)
The Cynical Historian Fair enough really ;)
The Cynical Historian (4 months ago)
America... Fuck yeah
SaviorAssassin1996 (4 months ago)
I hate Hollywood. They get firearms wrong just for the sake of looking cool and the action. John Woo doesn't know a thing about guns, the guy thinks dual wielding is best. He doesn't get gun safety. -_-
TheTimoprimo (29 days ago)
Isn't John Woo a Hong Kong director?
Dallas DautermanDallas (4 months ago)
Gotta love bullets that cause sparks off cars,wood,windows,buildings,etc like a darn cutting torch or fireworks... Plus the either disposable or "147 round" magazine on Glocks, or whatever near limitless capacity handguns the scene calls for. Oops,almost forgot about the rifle& pistol bullets that can hurl bodies thru the air.
M S (5 months ago)
No AR or AK???
The Cynical Historian (5 months ago)
No ak, but I've got mosin. ARs are boring, but we've got one somewhere
Kevin C Cucumber (5 months ago)
Hollywood also makes it so everyone with a gun has 50-75 round magazines and they all shoot from the hip
Graydon Treude (5 months ago)
12 shots can only hold 7 or so
James Bone (5 months ago)
A bit late to the party, but my problem with movie/TV guns is that they are simply not loud enough. Anyone who has fired centrefire ammo without ear protection will know just how deafeningly loud they are. People shooting in a confined space without ear protection would not be able to hear each other speak for some times afterwards and over time would get progressively severe permanent hearing damage.
Excalibur01 (5 months ago)
In The Last Samurai, it was pretty inaccurate for the Japanese military to still be untrained conscripts. According to the time the movie placed us, this should be after the Bosin war which had already battle tested the Imperial army. At the end of the movie, using mauser bolt action rifles were pretty accurate since in history, the Prussians did sell arms to the Japanese and they were being accurate in regards to that particular bolt action mauser being a single shot since Mauser would not invent a magazine fed rifle until over a decade later.
Excalibur01 (5 months ago)
Go to the INTERNET MOVIE FIREARMS DATABASE ( IMFDB.org ). We do our best to be as accurate as possible and to point out the things movies get wrong or right about guns
soso the Russian bear (6 months ago)
So.... How did you get that musket? Was it a musket? I'm not good when it comes to my guns
The Cynical Historian (6 months ago)
I bought it from a friend for $30. It's a cheap .50 cal short-barrel musket that you can by new at Cabellas or something for about $100. Nothing more than a short-range target shooter for out in the desert
mollkatless (6 months ago)
cynical historian - isn't the real motivation behind this video to suggest to viewers that if they have any gripes with your views on history, or history and Hollywood, to keep those gripes strictly online?   ;)
The Cynical Historian (6 months ago)
maybe [taps fingers together]😅
CHRIS DETERMAN (7 months ago)
Many S&W double action autos are safe if you eject the mag. Its one of their built in safety features. I had one then sold it for a 1911.
Excalibur01 (5 months ago)
Not all have magazine safeties. The recent M&P series are not like that and even Ruger had changed their recent guns to not have that option.
Hi bro vallepu veeranji (7 months ago)
Spider Seven (7 months ago)
Never count on Hollywood to give you accuracy when it comes to history or science. They'll opt for drama every time!
Der_Mantie (8 months ago)
What a beautiful collection of historical weapons.
BountyFlamor (8 months ago)
Do you have to put a cap on that revolver after every single shot?
Excalibur01 (5 months ago)
Yes. If there are 6 chambers for 6 balls, you need 6 caps and once you've fired all shots, you need to actually pull out the cap from the "nipple" and replace it with a new one. An old technique for that era is for every shot, you hold the revolver with the barrel pointed up and let gravity pull the expended cap down before cocking and rotating to the next chamber
JaredMithrandir (8 months ago)
I've seen plenty of fiction referencing the one left in the chamber. I'd kinda like to see more acknowledgment of how early Guns were invented. They were used already in England during the War of the Roses. They are actually mentioned in Shakespeare's Plays.
schizoidboy (9 months ago)
I love the Indiana Jones movies but even I know some of the guns depicted were not available at the time shown. The MP-40 was not available until 1940 and neither was the P-38 also shown in the movie. The guns the Germans would have used at that point in time were the MP-28 (which was seen in the Last Crusade movie) and the Luger and the Walther PP series, which would have been common with plainclothes officers in the German police. The thing is the MP-40 is a sexy cinematic gun which is why a lot of movies use it.
anticarrrot (10 months ago)
I'm guessing at least some of the time, period accurate firearms are either hugely more expensive than more modern fire arms, or a lot less safe, or both. And paying a gunsmith to safely mod the guns to at least look more accurate is more money that its worth for a few half second shots.
Stephen Bond (1 year ago)
The rest of the world is not as gun obsessed as americans , we wouldn't notice such details
Dee Jolly (1 year ago)
Stephen Bond They miss out on a lot of nuanced history and good deer meat.
ANsOn II (1 year ago)
Did you do "The assa of J james by coward Ford"? I will look if not DO IT!
wejder12345 (1 year ago)
Nice with that bullet. In "Das Boot" (Book), one of the sailors fooling around with his gun shot himself becaous he forget anout this bullet.
theecapitan (1 year ago)
I'm a new subscriber and have watched quite a few of your videos but this one.... I love it. The inaccuracy of Hollywoods use of guns does bug me so very much. I've bored my wife and friends while watching movies saying exactly what you have said here. You're channel is brilliant. Coming from Scotland I really..... Deeply enjoyed the braveheart video. Thank you for the work you do fellow history bloke.
Mr9Guns (1 year ago)
Haha this shit bothers me too.
Lee H. (1 year ago)
Excellent review of Hollywood and many of the things I've noticed too. I enjoyed watching "The Last Samurai" for many reasons...especially the rise of an alcoholic from the depths of their addiction. But I too was wondering why they didn't at least have some Sharps or Henry repeating rifles in the movie. Keep up the good work! More historians with guns!
Benjamin Garringer (1 year ago)
Hey... The Henry Rifle was a repeating carbine with literally the same action as the WInchester that was indeed used in the Civil War... So historical inaccuracy ball back to you...
Benjamin Garringer (1 year ago)
I watched a series on Forgotten Weapons on here about the history of the Winchester... It wasn't in wide usage, but it was there, and if absolute historical accuracy is the ideal than I thought it should be mentioned... Fiction is pretty rife with characters using rare weapons, but they did exist.
The Cynical Historian (1 year ago)
The Henry Rifle didn't see much usage, and it was severely underpowered in comparison to the Spencer. It was a fragile mechanism, and the .41 rimfire had a very limited range. There were an estimated 5k Henrys that saw unofficial service (through private purchases) in the CW and less than 2k official, whereas there were over 100k Spencers officially adopted. Showing Henrys during 1861-65 is akin to showing all these sub-machineguns in Battlefield 1 - it just doesn't fit the timeframe. (I happen to have just been reading an article on early repeating arms when you commented, LOL)
OrlopRat42 (1 year ago)
The Arisaka rifle entered Japanese service in 1897, not 1871. In the film, the Japanese army in the climactic battle is shown using Mauser M.1871 bolt action rifles, which is accurate for the period. The earlier scenes, where they're using imported American muzzle loaders is also accurate, since they take place shortly before Japan adopted the Mauser
nerdnow (1 year ago)
Like how some World War one flics have Bren Guns.
Jack Clock (1 year ago)
Or Lawrence of Arabia having a Browning 1919 being used by the Ottomans.
Arené Lomax (1 year ago)
Damn, I take it you collect guns?
The Cynical Historian (23 days ago)
+Sawyer Northrop for the most part, yes they are fully functional. The Spencer Carbine in this video needs its hammer reworked, and some are just too fragile to fire. But everything on screen here fires (though the Spencer takes a lot of work to get the hammer to strike properly, plust the ammo is nigh impossible to get ahold of)
Sawyer Northrop (23 days ago)
+The Cynical Historian How many of these are functional and how many are denix/ etc?
The Cynical Historian (1 year ago)
not for a long time, but the family collection of historical pieces is quite substantial
videogamebomer (1 year ago)
Not going to lie I am extremely jelly of your collection
Mailbox_Bomber (1 year ago)
Gotta love the uncocked 1911's
Kozmik Cat (1 year ago)
The worst offenders in my opinion is movies where they put laser sights on sniper rifles...
Nathan Sherwood (1 year ago)
I personally never had a problem with the timeframe the guns in Hollywood are used. it's not always possible to get the right gun especially in the numbers needed for a Hollywood production. as long as they look the part It doesn't bother me.
Mike Gardner (1 year ago)
It's not about Hollywood getting it wrong because there are professionals who deal in these things, it's about making a movie that people will watch. I am an airline mechanic and pilot and many airplane scenes are messed up in regards to real life. Again, it's to make a movie. In space, noise is not possible, but most space movies have spacecraft sounds to make it interesting to watch. A movie may be set in one place but the real location is somewhere else. Who cares.
Ryan Cole (1 year ago)
That wasn't a Colt, it was a Remington.
Josh Cowart (1 year ago)
I've seen some movies lately where they'll pull the slide back when emptying the chamber. Also many movies even older ones show the slide staying open when a pistol is empty because they make the reload dramatic.
Bill Sanderson Jr (1 year ago)
the jackie chan film is operation condor is more accurate than alot of movies lol.
Bill Sanderson Jr (1 year ago)
in terms of the round still in the gun
That's What Xi Said (1 year ago)
It's not just guns, but cars and all products really. Even if the film makers know, there's only some much you can do with a limited time and budget. Would you risk a multi-million dollar production just to get a few product details totally correct, ones that most movie goers wouldn't know anyway? Car people say this about cars. Foodies about food. And gun people about guns in movies.
Nick Rynearson (1 year ago)
Like in Dazed and Confused there's a 1977 Chevy El Camino but the movie take's place in 1976 yeah it's a blink and you would missed it kind of car but it's still there.
Nick Rynearson (1 year ago)
Like in Dazed and Confused there's a 1977 Chevy El Camino but the movie take's place in 1976 yeah it's a blink and you would missed it kind of car but it's still there.
Richard Miller (1 year ago)
I've been saying this for years!
jlastre (1 year ago)
Hate to correct you, but some semi autos are "safe" with a mag ejected and a round in the chamber. The S&W M39 series in particular. Obviously it is not good practice to consider it safe.
Powder Monkey (1 year ago)
The idea of magazine disconnects comes from soldiers inadvertently firing their gun and potentially killing themselves or others. It happened and militaries wanted to decrease those chances, especially since a sidearm is mostly to be carried not to be used unless you're in a dire situation.
jlastre (1 year ago)
Powder Monkey Not surprised that a magazine disconnect is on a Hi-Power because of a French Military request. The M39was also targeted for military use at first. As I said the disconnect was a selling point to LE. I recall the sales rep telling me why it would be useful and Massad Ayood had articles claiming such disconnects had saved lives. I am not sure myself but the 669 was only my backup. I think it depends. If you try to seat a magazine incorrectly the gun will not fire. Of course if you try to seat a mag incorrectly on a pistol without a mag disconnect the mag will drop to the floor. Problematic either way. I imagine because America is a very litigious society Beretta has a warning on the Px4 storm letting operators of the pistol know that the firearm will still fire with the magazine out of the well. There is an other YouTuber who talks about disconnects and mentions a local story where a grandfather handed a pistol over to his granddaughter without the magazine she pointed it at him, discharging the weapon, and killing him. So it is always wise to consider all semi-autos capable of firing without a magazine in the well.
Powder Monkey (1 year ago)
The Hi-Power's magazine safety was added to to design off of a French military request as the Hi-Power was in the French military pistol trials. Some people hate magazine safeties, but they make sense from a military standpoint. Less likely bad things will happen.
jlastre (1 year ago)
The Cynical Historian Did a little more research. Apparently to be on the Cali approved list for sale of semi autos it has to be available with a mag disconnect. You can also request a mag disconnect from the manufacturer. I think this is mostly for LE. Sort of funny in a way. When I was a LEO I carried a revolver as my primary. No mag disconnect on that.
The Cynical Historian (1 year ago)
+jlastre ah. I tried to find them by looking up "magazine safety." The Hi Power is surprising. I've shoot a few, but never decocked with an ejected mag
Matthew Marden (1 year ago)
Hm, could you easily replace the cylinder on a cap-and-ball revolver (never seen a revolver in the flesh, so I've no idea)?
Garret LeBuis (1 year ago)
Matthew Marden Clint Eastwood did that in the climax of Pale Rider, and the pistol he uses is a Remington (similar to what Cypher showed) that seemed to be optimized for doing that. I haven't seen it done with a Civil War era Colt pistol. If I had to guess, I'd say that it's a bit more cumbersome, since the Colt would have to be partially dismantled to extract the cylinder. It comes down to what the person wielding the weapon intended to do while in action. Quantrill's raiders would carry multiple pistols so they could either holster or drop them after expending their load (another Clint portrayal in The Outlaw Josey Wales does this). However, if carrying multiple pistols would be too much of a strain, then carrying multiple pre-loaded cylinders would be a reasonable alternative. The problem would be the possibility of caps coming loose from their nipples. Anyway, good question.
Evan Friend (1 year ago)
Hammers and safeties on Glocks.
Brendon Mustaciola (1 year ago)
Laziness and insufficient budget.
Username 1 (1 year ago)
They don't know how to use guns since Hollywood is run by a bunch of hippy liberals, I think its pretty obvious
aylmer666 (1 year ago)
Yeah you could easily expand this to tanks - the most common issue I see is the use of T34/85s in movies set before 1943. Even the poster for Hemingway & Gelhorn proudly shows one... used in the SPANISH CIVIL WAR!
The Cynical Historian (1 year ago)
I can be a bit more forgiving of tanks, since their differences often don't matter to narrative. For instance in Patton, the tanks are m46 Patton tanks, even on the German side. Production constraints sometimes force that. Look at Red Dawn (the original, obviously), where they used nothing but American tanks, but disguised them as Soviet ones. As a former tanker myself, I have a lot of fun trying to ID everything when they are hiding the like that. When they are CG though or using reel footage, that is rather sad when they get it wrong.
Fuzzy Dunlop (1 year ago)
Is that a Mosin I spy next to your left shoulder? My first rifle was a Mosin. 15 years old, walked into a gun show in Florida and left with a 91/30 and three boxes of corrosive-ass ammo. Kicks like a mule and ugly as a sow but there's something charming about the Russian crutch. Also, talking about the last samurai, in a fictional world in which Tom Cruise (so, Americans) are arming and training the Army of Japan, do you really think they're giving them the newest tech? Look at the ARVN forces in the Second Indochina conflict, they were sporting WW2-era weaponry like the m1/2 carbines and Thompson SMGs.
Jack Clock (1 year ago)
The Special edition of Last Samurai gave the Japanese Empire the Gewher 71 rifle.
Evan Friend (1 year ago)
That's a Mosin. I don't own one, though I almost bought one about 10 years ago until my wife asked if I actually wanted it or if I just wanted a $78 gun. I'm not a fan of Mosins, I much prefer a Mauser Kar98K or a Lee-Enfield.
Madjid Mouas (1 year ago)
Do you really expect accuracy and truth from Hollywood? Quite naive for a cynical one :)
arthur131313 (1 year ago)
The Rifleman TV show also used a 1892 rifle but took place in the 70s and 80s
FD Mackey (1 year ago)
I love Westerns and have since I was but sprig. But even as a preteen I noticed a few "problems" with firearms used in some of my favorite TV series not to mention movies. Such a 1892 Winchesters used by both the good and bad guys when the time period was supposed to be in the 1860 or 1870s (ever notice how few Westerns seem to take place in the 1880s or even the not as tamed as some people like to think 1890s?). 1866 and 1873 Winchesters would have been more along the lines of correct in many of those series and/or movies. John Wayne was notorious for using guns of the wrong era in his movies....But then he was John Wayne so I can forgive him. Two of my favorite Westerns, both featured the Spencer carbine. In the remake of "3:10 to Yuma" a Spencer makes a very limited appearance and in "The Unforgiven" a Spencer is used for both long and short range work by Clint Eastwood....Who can also be forgiven for any firearms errors in his movies.....Because he's Clint Eastwood. In the Eastwood movie the Spencer is even seen being reloaded via it's butt stock tube. All that and I'm still trying to figure out how the phaser pistols used in the J.J. Abrams "Star Trek" reboot movies could generate recoil.....I mean, we are talking beams of concentrated light here, not ammo that goes boom and launches a solid projectile down range.....Excellent video! Keep 'em coming.
urbanmyths95 (1 year ago)
i get your point i'm still waiting for them to get arms and armour right like a longsword in the 11th century just no
igelkott255 (1 year ago)
Anachronisms don't bother me too much... I just assume they're par for the course and not just for guns but for any props in a movie. What gets me though is when there's a standoff and the good guys are aiming their guns at the bad guys and the bad guys are aiming their guns at the good guys and they're staring at each other or talking or whatever. And then things get really tense for whatever reason and they all work the actions on their guns... lever action to load a round, pull the hammer back on a pistol, load a round with a pump shotgun, etc..... So wait.... you mean all this time you were aiming your guns at each other you weren't really serious since there was no round in the chamber????? But now you're serious because NOW your gun is ready to shoot? ... I just shake my head... And this happens ALL THE TIME....
Joe Dufresne (1 year ago)
one of my pet peeves is using firearms period accurate, but not historically accurate. for instance using a single action where the real character used a double action. Or a certain movie replacing the superior enfield 1917 with the m1903.
obiwanfx (1 year ago)
small point about the last samurai: The movie is as far of from history as star wars is from real life space travelling but I understood that in their story the Americans are the first to traind and equip their levy army. It's safe to say that in the initial training and dealing proces (before algrens capture) they just sold them their outdated and obsolete muskets from which they had millions still lying around after the civil war. About a year later at the final battle the Japanese army actually does have the more appropriate rifles you are discribing in this video. It doesn't make it historicaly correct but it does explain the muskets in their version
Brian Mead (3 months ago)
One of the first priorities of Japan's government was getting modern firearms. They went right from matchlocks to cartridge breechloaders, actually, but didn't have domestic military modern gunmaking until roughly the 1880's.
Grip Side (1 year ago)
Many issues you mention are for drama. Especially the hammer cock noise on the striker fire handguns and the click, click, click stuff. Watched a movie once with a single pump shotgun that is only fired once i think... every character has it at one time or another and everyone pumps the action once.... it's all about the drama.
saigokun (1 year ago)
Nice video. One of my favorite anachronisms is the use of an MG42 in one scene during the Mexican Revolution of 1910 in Sergio Leone's Duck You Sucker (1971). It is a great movie and a great scene but a heck of an anachronism.
Neth Smiley (1 year ago)
This is a rather silly question, but I know absolutely nothing about guns, although I would like to learn. Is it bad to "dry-fire" a gun, so to speak--pull the trigger with no powder or bullets in the gun? If so, does it degrade the firing mechanism over time, or are there other effects?
The Cynical Historian (1 year ago)
dry firing is a tricky subject, because it vastly depends on the gun itself. If it's something with a self contained bolt (Glock, Ar-16, AK...) you don't really have a choice in terms of decocking. When you can manipulate the firing mechanism (basically anything with an exposed hammer) it is good practice to decock by easing the mechanism forward, rather than just pulling the trigger. Basically - just learn how it functions and try not to let things slam into each other unnecessarily.
connor (1 year ago)
A gunfight in a Western with that type of gun would be much cooler. Some wounded bandit panicking as he loads it, and another is loading his, and there's just the sound of mad scratching as they try to load as quick as possible
The Cynical Historian (1 year ago)
I've seen it done in a couple of films, though I can't name any off the top of my head - but it is great every time it happens
Rodney Sandt (2 years ago)
I was watching " The Good, the Bad and the Ugly " (again, one of my favorites) a few months ago and noticed in the hotel room scene Clint's loading metallic shells into the cylinder and earlier Eli was putting metallic shells into a revolver he put together from 2 or 3 hand guns. I don't even know if that's possible. Recently I found out that the metallic shells (like you said - didn't get used in Colt hand guns until 1873. I was certain that I wasn't the only one to recognize that anachronism. Thanks for the video.
cantseematoesimblind (1 year ago)
Colt itself didn't create the iconic Peacemaker until 1873. Cartridges, however, predate the American Civil War in development and the use of cartridge guns made leaps and bounds in the war, even if most of the arms used were still black powder (the original U.S. Chief of Ordnance, James W. Ripley felt soldiers with breech load or lever action guns (cartridge fed) would waste ammunition. There was also the fact that few companies could manufacture cartridges at this point to suggest that keeping the armies supplied would be impossible) the use of several black cartridge guns showed their superiority to muzzleloaders. For this reason individuals and small scale gunsmiths began converting old Colt's to take cartridges. A bounty hunter (like Blondie and Tuco in The Good, The Bad and The Ugly) would almost certainly have used a cartridge conversion by war's end. Tuco's use of parts from three different guns is a little weird. It's likely that if they were all chambered the same (.44 most likely) then he could have done it. Why that would somehow improve the gun is beyond me. The movie is a Spaghetti Western, so they tend to be a little more accurate to the time period. You can see that in the fact that all the guns would have existed at that point in the very least, even if there are some possible technicalities that are questionable.
And then you've got westerns where the ammunition on their bandoliers doesn't correspond to the guns they're using.
Daniel Watters (2 months ago)
"Wanted: Dead or Alive" was a classic example. Josh Randall (Steve McQueen) carries .45-70 rounds on his belt that are far too large to fit his cut-down Winchester 1892 "Mare's Leg."
packr72 (2 years ago)
In last battle of The Last Samurai the Imperial Army uses 1871 Mausers, not muzzle loading muskets.
Storm (2 years ago)
Civil war, what about a Winchester 1866? They should have those in all westerns but don't. And no reason for it, same mechanism as the later model pretty much, cock the lever and fire.
Jack Clock (1 year ago)
Another lever-action rifle would be the Volcanic rifle. Also, revolving rifles were good weapons too, alongside the very rare bolt-action rifles and much more common Breech-loaders.
The Cynical Historian (2 years ago)
If you're implying that Civil War movies should have that weapon, I would remind you that the war ended in 1865. Aside from that, many movies use the "yellow boy," but never show that it was a severely under-powered rifle given that it used the .44 Henry rimfire. There was a whole evolution in Winchesters from 1866-1895, but movies fail to capture that in the slightest.
Eric Jesperson (2 years ago)
I don't think that dollar bill in the empty cylinder chamber thing is true. Cuz I tried firing a black powder cartridge revolver with a dollar in it and it burnt up. I think that myth either comes from Hollywood or cowboy novels.
Flintlock Homestead (1 year ago)
Just for the record boys; I own a 2nd model smith&wesson American, a Colt 1860 Richards conversion, Colt Frontier Six Shooter made in 1894, and a Colt Bisley made in 1900, a smith&wesson 1881 double action frontier, and a smith&wesson new model 3 frontier. Every none of them I load all six cylinders, lower the hammer slowly onto the cartridge, pull the hammer back slightly with the trigger still pulled until the cylinder unlocks, rotate the cylinder slightly, lower the hammer, the rotate the cylinder until the firing pin falls into the space between two cartridges, release the trigger and carry with all six cylinders loaded. It's a lot quicker to do than it is to describe.
Eric Jesperson (2 years ago)
+Cynical Historian Oh, good point!
The Cynical Historian (2 years ago)
+Eric Jesperson that was for the cartridge Colt, not a cap and ball. I've accidentally shot mine with the $1 bill in it just fine
The Cynical Historian (2 years ago)
+Eric Jesperson that was for the cartridge Colt, not a cap and ball. I've accidentally shot mine with the $1 bill in it just fine
Bilge Pump (2 years ago)
Hey Cynical Historian, if your not already a subscriber u probably would enjoy Hickok45.
Bilge Pump (2 years ago)
Couldn't u just eat him up w/a spoon?
Tevo77777 (2 years ago)
Last samurai has many historical problems but it's a good film. Too bad it's so far off?
Gustavo Almanza (2 years ago)
I take it he browses IMFDB.
Blaze Boyd (6 months ago)
as a avid imcdb i now have a new obsession
brad duffy (2 years ago)
when i look it up the first version of the arisaka rifle dident come out until the late 1890s about 20 odd years after the films time just thought i should bring this point up
The Cynical Historian (2 years ago)
+brad duffy They had been buying weapons from the french before that, from which the earliest Arisakas were based. A good example of this is the Fusil Gras, which was very popular during the Satsuma rebellion.
WollongongWacko (2 years ago)
great video
Nicholas P Bachinski (2 years ago)
The cap and ball revolver you pick up is not a colt. i found that quite funny. but you are making a goodpoint
The Cynical Historian (2 years ago)
+Nicholas P Bachinski I realized it after filming, but that is a modified Remington - you can tell by the top strap. Oops.
artmanxp (2 years ago)
do no one want to see a westurn with peopple reloading half the time
Good gosh, are those all your guns?  Are any of them replicas?  It can make for a fairly expensive hobby.  The liquor sort of surprised me, but this one really surprised me.  I would have never guessed you had an arsenal like that.  It makes me wonder just how many things you are an "amateur" expert/collector of.
The Cynical Historian (3 years ago)
The CSA didn't really have a standard issue pistol or gun of any sort. They had all kinds of different makes and models, which became a real logistical problem. Most common for pistols was probably the Remington model 1858. You can buy cap and ball revolvers for fairly cheap even with all this recent stupidity surrounding idiots hoarding supplies.
I have a replica Confederate cavalry pistol... that I CANNOT FIND!
The Cynical Historian (3 years ago)
+Reading Through History That isn't even a quarter of the collection! I will say that many are not owned by me, though a good chunk depicted are, but just a huge amount nonetheless. That other owner, though I will not say his name here, is what we often call a "collector of collections." BTW, in the gun world, if you call it a replica, that normally means it is non-functioning models (as in just for show). Everything is real, though the colts are recreations.

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