The original version of Gone In 60 Seconds was independent filmmaking at its finest and featured an iconic car chase scene against which all others are measured today. Best of all, despite its tiny budget and absence of any digital effects, it was thoroughly entertaining. Then Hollywood got involved.
The problem when Hollywood remakes any movie is they can’t seem to stop changing things. The remake of Gone in 60 Seconds gave us a more in-depth script, we learned more about the characters, and almost all of the cars had been updated—but it also introduced some plot holes so large you can drive a car through them.
When you center a movie around any particular niche interest, you have to have your facts 100% correct, because your audience will immediately take the opportunity to tell you that you’re wrong. Gone in 60 Seconds is no different as it gets numerous vehicle facts incorrect. In one scene when a Shelby Cobra is started, we hear the noise of a Chrysler. In another, the button to activate the NOS system is glued onto the gear selector.
Then there are the plot holes. These are problems with the script or story that are completely senseless. Some are related to the main characters and their story, whereas others are vehicle specific and factually incorrect.
Being car enthusiasts ourselves, we thought we’d grab some popcorn and rewatch Nicolas Cage and his cronies accomplish the impossible, so here are 15 glaring plot holes in Gone in 60 Seconds that make no sense.
15 Why Is A Certified Ferrari Mechanic Having Cash Flow Problems?
Sara ‘Sway’ Wayland, played by Angelina Jolie, is trying to live the honest life and has two jobs to make ends meet, and this is where things start getting tricky. She’s not only working as a bartender but her primary job is a certified Ferrari mechanic. The average salary for a Ferrari mechanic is around $51,000 in the USA. That's far higher than the average salary for US workers, which is $44,000. There is also the opportunity to upskill and travel to work in more lucrative markets with the right training. It makes no sense why she would be forced to work as a bartender to earn extra cash, unless she is spending a small fortune to maintain her faux dreadlocks.
14 Why Does Calitri Demand 50 Cars In Exchange For Kip?
The inciting incident the story is when the brother of the protagonist (Memphis) fails on a job he promised to do for a local mob boss (Calitri). Knowing about the talents that Memphis has for acquiring cars that aren’t his, he offers him a deal: get 50 cars of his choosing and he will release his brother unharmed. What doesn’t make sense is why Calitri doesn’t demand a hefty cash payment instead. Once he has the cars, he then has to hide them, find a seller on the black market, and then arrange delivery, all while dodging any suspicion from the police. A one-time cash payment would be much easier to handle but Calitra is determined to take the difficult route.
13 The Car That Doesn’t Exist
To keep things organized, Memphis and his crew list all the cars they need to get on a blackboard. Eagle-eyed car enthusiasts will notice that one of the cars listed is a 1969 Dodge Superbird, which doesn’t exist. Potentially, the producers may have gotten their wires crossed; in 1969, Dodge made a tribute to the NASCAR racers that Bobby Allison and their fellow Dodge drivers were using, called the Charger Daytona. Styling wise, it looked like a combination between a car and an airplane. The car had a 426 ci V8 and a top speed of 200 mph. The following year, Plymouth made a nearly identical car called the Superbird and this is probably the origin of the mistake.
12 The Odds Of Finding An Aston DB1
The second car on the list that the crew must obtain is also an impossible find: a 1962 Aston Martin DB1. The DB1 wasn’t made in 1962 but way back in 1948 and it wasn’t named the DB1 until Aston Martin built the DB2 as a tribute to the company’s new owner, David Brown, in 1950. The DB1 was entered in a 24-hour race at Spa in Belgium as a way to test its durability. It ended up winning the race but sales were slow and only 15 DB1s were sold. In 1962, the DB4 was manufactured, so not only did the film producers get it wrong, but the odds of finding a DB1 are absolutely astronomical.
11 Why Does The List Of Cars Keep Changing?
As well as the crew having to chase down impossible and rare cars, the list of cars the crew must obtain keeps changing through the film, as well, and there is never any explanation given as to why. Originally, a 1999 Q45 Infiniti is seen but later in the film, it has been replaced with a Jaguar XJ220. Later on, the XJ220 disappears and a Jaguar XK8 takes its place. But that’s not the final change because later on it is erased and a Lamborghini Diablo is written there instead. A Hummer also makes a brief appearance before it, too, is removed. Eventually, the list is restored back to its original form but we are never given any explanation as to why.
10 The Car Expert Who Isn’t An Expert
Memphis isn’t going to be allowed to enact his plan unhindered; Detective Castlebeck has been keeping tabs on him and has a special interest in Memphis, being somewhat of an automotive expert himself. In one scene, Castlebeck is talking about the 1983 Cadillac Eldorado, explaining that that was the year they introduced automatic ride control. In actual fact, Cadillac first used self-leveling suspension in 1967 on their Eldorado. In the case of the special edition Brougham, Cadillac used an advanced air suspension system in 1957. It’s not clear why Detective Castlebeck is portrayed as some kind of car expert when he clearly has no idea what he is talking about with facts that are easily rebutted by a Google search.
9 Some Of The Vehicle Acquisition Sequences Are Impossible
The way that Memphis and his crew get the cars is almost comical. A short bit of trickery with the door lock, some magic fingerwork on the ignition wiring, and the cars roar into life. This may be accurate for some of the older cars that the crew acquires, such as the 1950 Mercury Custom or the 1965 Pontiac GTO, but supercars like the Lamborghini Diablo have electronic fuel pumps. These will not get power unless the car receives a signal from its own unique electronic key, meaning the car will simply not receive fuel and therefore, will not start.
8 How Did Calitri Get Into The USA?
Calitri, who is ultimately responsible for Memphis getting his crew back together, had a checkered past himself. After spending five years locked up in South London, he immigrated to the US in 1998 upon release. In reality, though, this would have been impossible and it’s never explained how he entered the USA without being turned away based on his past. Throughout the film, he also discloses other dubious behavior that he’s been involved in, making his appearance in the USA even more implausible. This opens up a whole series of questions such as did he lie on his arrival form? How did he get around the background checks? Does he have somebody else's fingerprint grafted on?
7 Why Didn’t The LAPD Warn Anybody?
Memphis is ordered to leave town because his mother is rightly worried that little brother Kip will follow in his footsteps. From then on, he seems to have led a relatively straight life, leaving the city and keeping his nose clean. However, after moving to a new location and leaving his old life behind him, the Los Angeles Police Department has dropped any interest they had in any acts he may have previously committed. They also do not warn the local police about his talents and his past, leaving him free to lead a fairly peaceful life. Of course, this would never be the case in real life, but even in movieworld, it doesn’t make any sense.
6 How Did They Get 50 Cars In One Night?
When a car goes missing, particularly a modified or unusual car, there are two possible scenarios. Either the owner notices his car is gone and starts notifying everyone they know or the car is spotted by someone who recognizes that the owner is not behind the wheel and informs everybody they know. The news is quick to travel to local car enthusiasts and car clubs. Soon, there are hundreds of people keeping watch for the car and when it’s spotted, the location is shared just as quickly as the original news. Often, the car is recovered in less than 30 minutes of going missing. To be able to get away with 50 very unique cars is nothing short of miraculous.
5 Why Do They Drive So Recklessly?
Gone In 60 Seconds begins with a Porsche being driven through a plate glass window and ends with a Ford Mustang being jumped off a bridge. Considering how valuable these cars are and how expensive they would be to repair, we would assume the people driving them would do so with an ounce of care. There is also the issue that the person they are delivering the car to will expect it to be in near perfect condition and otherwise, they may just refuse to accept it. We can appreciate that they want to get the car off the streets as soon as possible but, surely, they would attract less attention if they didn’t squeal the tires at every opportunity.
4 Why Is Memphis Reluctant To Work With Sway And Sphinx?
One of the first challenges standing between Memphis and his brother's safety is getting all his old crew back together. Out of all of his original team, the only ones that aren’t locked up or out of commission are Sway (Angelina Jolie) and Sphinx (Vinnie Jones). Memphis is reluctant to get in contact with them at first, although it’s shown that these worries were completely unfounded because it turns out that Sway and Sphinx are pretty knowledgeable, hardworking, and dependable. This makes us wonder why Memphis was so unhappy and hesitant about working with them again in the first place.
3 Why Don’t The Police Work Together?
Curiously, in the movie, we are to believe that the LAPD has their own division to investigate car-related issues. Another dubious factor is that they seem to working in competition with other police departments. In one scene, there is an argument between two police departments over who is going to get to catch the main villain, Raymond Calitri. At the climax of the movie, the vehicle division decide to go after him even after being warned that another police division is chasing him for more serious transgressions. They shrug this off, not considering that it’s possible for the two divisions to pool forces considering their common goal of bringing the crook in.
2 Why Is Eleanor So Easy To Take?
The final car, the Shelby Mustang GT500 that Memphis has named Eleanor, is a rare and seriously expensive classic car. Only 2,048 were made in 1967 and car dealers value them around the $140,000 mark, with the car used in the film selling for over $1,000,000. With that in mind, it’s inconceivable that the owner of this beautiful car made no attempt to secure it against miscreants who thought they could take it. Memphis unlocks the door in one second flat and starts the car in under five seconds. There is no hidden fuel cutoff and no key transponder—it’s almost as if the owner wanted Memphis to have it.
1 In Fact, Why Don't Any Of The Cars Have Security Devices?
There’s no doubting that some phenomenal cars make their appearance in the movie. The complete list is a mishmash of tough muscle cars, vintage classics, supercars, track monsters, and JDM imports. However, one thing they all have in common is that none of their owners fitted any kind of security devices to them, besides one that has a malfunctioning car alarm. Granted, this film was made back in in the year 2000 and security has improved a lot, but even around that time frame, people were wising up and started to use hidden GPS trackers and vehicle immobilizers—besides everyone in this film, it seems.
Sources: Best Movie Cars, IMDB, Hypebeast, and Bloomberg.