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Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace - Fire in Space?
When the laser blast hits Queen Amidala's ship soon after it takes off from Naboo, the area it hits catches on fire. Fire won't burn without air, and there isn't much of that in space.
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Contributed By:
mgka on 04-26-2000
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Comments:
Brad writes:
It's true that fire can't exist without air (oxygen specifically) but there's something you're forgetting-- there's air on the ship, when the shot penetrates the ship, the oxygen from the ship allows the fire to burn. It can and has happend even in real life events such as the Apollo 13 mission. So, that was not a slip-up.
33 of 34 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Klorr writes:
First of all... it's not that there is no atmosphere in space... it's that space is a vacuum. Sound needs a medium to travel through, and while space is not a PERFECT vacuum, it's the closest thing that is found naturally. Secondly... rocket fuel is LIQUID OXYGEN. That is why it can burn in space. As for the sounds... it's a damned movie... how boring would it be if there was no sound during the fight sequences?
17 of 18 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Soukey writes:
A brief physics lesson: There are four classes of fires: A, B, C, and D. Look at a fire extinguisher sometime. It will be rated for one or more of these types. Common extinguishers are rated for A, B, and C. Class D fires are a special class; they release their own oxygen as a product of combustion. In the US Navy, we were taught that the only response to a Class D fire was to throw it overboard. This would not extinguish it, just prevent it from igniting something else on the ship. A common example: Firecracker fuses. That is why they can be flushed and still explode in a pipe full of water.
14 of 14 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
John writes:
If there was a hull breach, the fire could be feeding off of the oxygen inside the ship as it escapes ...
8 of 10 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Anna writes:
If everything was EXACTLY correct to physics, it would be a darned boring movie.
10 of 14 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Particlehead writes:
If we're going down this road, we should perhaps also include the basic impossibility of laser "bolts" that travel slow enough to follow, or that are even visible at all without atmospheric interference!
7 of 8 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Observationer writes:
It's true that there should be no sound in space - but there should also be no music anywhere! I always say that the sound in space is added for effect, and isn't supposed to be "real". Although I believe George Lucas has said that in the SW galaxy/universe, sound can exist in space.
5 of 8 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
mgka writes:
If there was a hull breach, all the air would leak out of the ship. Both of the rooms near where the blast hit had people in them, and nobody had trouble breathing. Therefore, it couldn,t be a hull breach.
2 of 4 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Hack Ace writes:
First--Its a sci-fi movie. Second, lightsabers are a plasma energy contained within a force field, not a laser beam. As stated by others, a hull breach will provide oxygen for a fire. And YES there can be fire in space (rocket engines are a prime example).
4 of 8 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Aquilo writes:
The sun is a huge fusion reactor that is constantly changing its molecular structure in its core making its own fuel; it is not burning in the way we think. If you ever watch a shuttle launch after MECO the shields at the end have fire around it, the old Apollo rockets had fire around the rings between the rocket stages. Fire can burn in space if you have the right fuel or like hot metal/rock if its hot enough it will catch on fire. When the droid control ship blow up the piece appears to fall that could be caused by an explosion on the top decks of that section of the ship pushing the top part of that piece faster then the bottom + the planets gravity could be pulling it again making it appear to move in our perception of down.
2 of 4 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Pyro writes:
If you people are going to post science lessons, you should put them on the Discussion Board, unless they pertain to a specific slip-up.
6 of 12 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
lefti writes:
Okay, let me see if I can clear this up. A fire requires two things. Fuel and oxygen. The sun is NOT a ball of fire, it is a ball of plasma(the fourth state of matter). As for the Apollo rockets in the MECO stage, the interstage rings had flames around them because they came in contact with the earth's atmosphere and there was friction. Since they came in contact with the earth's atmosphere, there was oxygen for the fire.
3 of 7 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Souul writes:
Ok, a few things, first off, THERE CAN BE FIRE IN SPACE JUST NOT FOR VERY LONG. The ships, hopefully, have their own supply..... a huge supply of oxygen so the fire would be there. The sound...... effects, it would be pretty boring without them. The biggest problem I have is when planets and crap blow up... there is only one huge ring and not a sphere of a blast wave.... so if there is just one big ring why don't ships just go "down" or "up"? Its kinda like heros in old west movies and stuff that run away from the train on the tracks instead of just jumping off the tracks.
2 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
naganootch writes:
Well then, let's get more into it, you cant hear laser blasts in space nor explosions, because there is no atmosphere in space, lightsabres are impossible, you couldn't control the laser to make one, so it would be a handle that shoots lasers out all over the place, let's not even get into what's possible for a jedi to do or not do, or all this jump to light speed stuff!
2 of 6 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Mars Guo writes:
Lightsabers are totally unrelated from the force, they're simply the weapon of choice for Jedi. The force has nothing to do with it, as proved when Han Solo used Luke's Saber to slice open that Tauntaun...
3 of 8 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
shawn writes:
All this is true about sound in space, fire in space etc. but this is a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. Who's to say that in this far away galaxy, physics aren't different than they are here?
1 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
@ssKicker writes:
Maybe the thing that the ship was hit with had its own oxygen supply. It could have had that so that the ship WOULD catch on fire, doing more damage than just the weapon. A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away they might just have done that.
0 of 3 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Bonzo writes:
(Responce to mgka's comment) It is correct that a hull breach would cause the air to leak out, but this ship could very well have a way of controlling this... Just look how advanced they are... Don't you think they would have figured out a way to survive a minor hullbreach?
0 of 4 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Wonderman writes:
Also, when the droid control thing blows up, part of it "falls". There is no gravity in space, so it couldn't have "fallen"
0 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Wonderman writes:
The sun burns because there are certain chemicals in it that make it burn. Wait, is that true? I don't know. Maybe I should just shut up now.
0 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Gungan Din writes:
That droid control ship rotated, creating its own gravity. When it exploded, it could no longer create gravity and "drifted" in space.
0 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
@ssKicker writes:
I know you didn't get your handle like this, Gungan Din, but in the Phantom Menace slip-ups, your name fits right in!
0 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
PLAYSTNLVR writes:
John> That's actually a really good point.
0 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
wesley58 writes:
well its only a sci-fi movie dude oh yeah at the end where anakin go in the trade federaition ship the droid would float there is no shield at the main hold
0 of 5 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
princessleia writes:
Well, first of all, this is not a slip up because if it was how come there is fire in all the movies while ships are blown up and stuff in space battles? Also, the whole sound thing, I agree that there has to be sound to make the movie exciting. I mean, the music isn't just in space, so therefore the other sounds could've been there too. Now for the whole fire thing in space, it is a movie, it does not have to be completely accurate! If it didn't have explosions then what would be the point?? There are certain explosions in space and fire can be possible. It all depends. Not to mention that most movies that are in space have fire! It's not a slip-up!!!
1 of 8 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Flambore writes:
Light sabers are not lasers. They are supposedly pure energy from the force.
1 of 9 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes
Cygnus20 writes:
What galaxy far, far away do you guys live in who don't believe that fire can burn in space???? Maybe you have heard of a little something called 'The Sun'? It's that huge ball of fire than hangs in the sky during the daylight hours. Fire can burn in space, it just depends on certain conditions.
1 of 9 people found this comment helpful. Did you? Yes


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