The Scarlet EmpressGoofs
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After Catherine stamps with her foot on the gold locket containing the portrait of Count Alexei, smashing it, she then flings it out of the window. The camera follows it as it falls slowly, glistening in the moonlight, through the branches of the tree outside her window, but it is completely undamaged.
Most of the action takes place at The Kremlin in Moscow. The historical Empress Elizabeth, Grand Duke Peter and later Catherine spent most of their reigns in St. Petersburg, which during the 18th Century was a modern, Europeanized city.
Peter's Holstein guard is falsely referred to as Hessian. This may have been deliberate to make use of the bad reputation of Hessian mercenaries in the American Revolutionary War.
When the flag is being lowered for the dead empress, we see the flag flapping in the wind but the fake backdrop is flapping also.
During the wedding feast, a skeleton can be seen bent over a cauldron. However, bolts in the joints of the skeleton and a precision cut across the skull indicate that it is an anatomical- or medical-skeleton model, an object that would not have been readily available in 18th-century Russia.
Catherine II is a woman of the 18th century, yet Dietrich depicts her with the depilated eyebrows and cupid-bow lips that were fashionable in 1934.