Unusual ammo loading in "Albino Alligator"(a movie)


#1

In a police-chase-turned-hostage-standoff “Albino Alligator” 1996 imdb.com/title/tt0115495/, a SWAT team cycles their weapons before the attack (semi-auto handguns and pump action shotguns) two times consecutively, and no ammo ejects on the second time. That is very strange to me since I have the same guns. May someone explain? A friend of mine answered this way:" The people who made this movie did not know anything about guns". Is there another explanation?
P.S. Small correction, one SWAT guy half opens a pistol slide to see the chambered round and then closes it, 2 SWAT guys rapidly double cycle 2 pump action shotguns.


#2

That is what happens when it is done with an unloaded gun I guess.


#3

Artistic license.


#4

This is common Hollywood stupidity. In one Bruce Willis “Die Hard” movie, he cycles a Beretta pistol about three times without firing it. I guess he had a hidden supply of ammo, to be able to eject live rounds onto the ground three times - no, you don’t seen anything eject - but that’s what would happen in “real life.” Sometimes it takes several days to film just one small sequence in a movie, and those people seem to ignorant to be able to remember what they did the previous day.

In many scenes, from many movies, you will see “shooters” with cocked weapons from one angle, and then uncocked from another, and then cocked again from still another, ad nauseum. The surprise is not that this happens with the Hollywood morons, but that occasionally, they actually get things to do with firearms correct throughout an entire movie.


#5

My favorite is still the cocking of the hammer on a luger pistol. (which it doesn’t have ;)


#6

It was probably a Luger when they were shooting it. Most likely a P-38 when they did want to shoot it. I am told that while not impossible, it is much, much harder to make the action of a Luger cycle with blanks than it is that of say a Browning type, or a Walther P-38. So, Maybe an excuse for it. In another movie, the Japanese officer had a Type 14 8 mm Japanese pistol until it came time to shoot it, when it miraculously became a P-38. Probably they didn’t want to bother to make blanks, or perhaps borrowed the Type 14 and did not have permission to do the alterations required to make any of these pistols work with blanks.


#7

My favorite is when an actor carrying a gun suddenly whips around and points the gun at something and the gun makes a clicking sound similar to it being de-cocked, as if just waving a gun around makes any noise at all. We could go on at long length with regard to hollywood gun & ammo absurdities.


#8

The entertainment industry now has better technical advisers than formerly, as you don’t see nearly as many gun-related mistakes in current TV shows and movies as there used to be. I’ve seen many older movies in which the characters used guns that hadn’t been invented yet for the for the time period of the movie. In some movie from the 50s (I don’t remember the title, but maybe someone will) involving the Royal Navy during WWII in which the lead character, a British Sailor, was firing at the Germans. In some scenes he was using a Mauser rifle, and in the next scene it was switched to a British .303 Enfield, then back again, for several cycles.


#9

But this is not even a gun advisory related issue, this is poor ignorance of the movie makers.

Where are their technical advisors when it comes to ammo, explosive ordnance and in particular to explosions? Most we see today is still at kindergarden level.


#10

One technical problem with movie cameras was/is the fact that the muzzle flash is so short-lived that the camera often don’t see it. Hence the white and sometimes enormous flames spouting from firearms. The movie “Heat” comes to mind.
But as an FX man here in Copenhagen explained to me: In daylight an explosion can be “augmented” by crushed charcoal, loose peat moss and by mixing some smoke making chemical in the blackpowder charges they use, but at night they have to use many gallons of gasoline to make an explosion look powerful. Again at night the flash from say a TNT block would be so fast the camera might not catch it.
How the EOD people make those wonderful detonations when they destroy ammo I don’t know. What is those sparklers the sometimes come out of these? Tracers?


#11

Ammo consists of lots of components, like various chemicals, various explosives, pyrotechnics, liquids, white phosphorpus, packing material and god knows what else. So the effects there may have many reasons.

TV/movies: well, I would understand if they would use some chemicals to extend the “flash time” (like a bit of fuel) but my point is much more basic. What we see on TV is mainly sheer BS which is beyond all reality.


#12

A good example of this is in the 1964 British film “Zulu”. The film is set in 1879, but the British officers are armed with Webley Mk VI Revolvers. Close-ups of the cartridges are also seen and they have drawn brass cases. In 1879 the issued rounds had roled cases.

I was also told by TonyE that the blank rounds used in that film were loaded by Kynoch and used up their very last stocks of .577/450 cases.


#13

I think in some cases like “Zulu” practicality takes a role. I never objected to most cowboy movies years ago using the 92 Winchester and 94 Marlin to portray rifles in films that took place anywhere from the Henry era on, before the 92 came on the market. They were available, and sufficient “shooting stocks” of 73 Winchesters, etc. were not, and there was no ready supply of blanks for the .44 RF Henry round for Henrys and 66 Winchesters. Today, no excuse for old west guns being wrong - they replicate everything today - Spencers, 66s, 73s, Sharps, Trapdoor Springfields, Rolling blocks and even Ballards and Colt .44 LA rifles. Also, made in calibers that afford no problems in getting dummy “live” rounds and blanks. The guns have gotten pretty good in the better modern Westerns, and even the holsters in most, although you still see rigs that simply did not exist, at least in any quantity, in the post-Civil War days, etc.

I think it would have been hard to find even a few earlier Enfield revolvers. Also, if you watch carefully, soldiers in the far backgrounds have long-model Lee Enfields with the magazines taken out, not Martinis like those troops in the front ranks and closer shots.

I doubt anyone was available to make up even the small amount of dummy bulleted 577/450 rounds for the shots of soldiers opening cases, anyway. Added by editing: I mean the ones with the brass-foil cases.

In short, I think they did the best they could on this great movie. In a lot of movies, you can see they don’t even try to create an illusion - they figure all the audience is as ignorant on guns and ammo as they are.


#14

Thanks for that John, I thought I saw a bolt-action rifle being loaded in the background.