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Minions: The Rise of Gru has received mostly positive reviews from critics and audiences, but a common geographic error is hard to ignore.

Minions: The Rise of Gru takes place primarily in San Francisco, and the animated sequel continues a common movie blunder regarding the city’s geography. Based on the hugely popular 2015 film minionswhich itself is a prequel to Despicable Me Animated Film Franchises, Minions: The Rise of Gru follows the titular yellow minions in their early years with the supervillain Gru. After young Gru is kidnapped, some of his minions travel to San Francisco to rescue their mini-boss.

One of these Minions, Otto, embarks on a solo road trip towards the Northern California city. But first he meets up with a biker in Death Valley, hundreds of miles southeast of San Francisco. Halfway through the massively successful Minions: The Rise of GruOtto is invited to ride this man’s motorcycle to his destination and they are eventually seen entering the city via the Golden Gate Bridge.

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Also see: Why Minions: The Rise Of Gru’s Box Office Completely Destroyed Lightyear

The problem with Otto and the motorcyclist who goes to San Francisco over the Golden Gate Bridge Minions: The Rise of Gru is that the duo is arriving from the south, but the Golden Gate Bridge is entering San Francisco from the north. This isn’t just an unfortunate mistake by filmmakers, however, as countless movies and TV shows are shot in the city, and most of them make the same common mistake of characters entering San Francisco across the Golden Gate Bridge despite arriving from the south or east .


Why the Golden Gate Bridge movie glitch is so common


A still from Minions: The Rise of Gru, mostly set in San Francisco.

The reason for the direction error in Minions: The Rise of Gru and so many other movies and TV shows set in San Francisco is easy. Landmarks are important in establishing locations in visual storytelling, and the Golden Gate Bridge is undoubtedly the most famous landmark in San Francisco. The most likely way to reach San Francisco from the south is along the coast and along the San Francisco Peninsula, which connects directly to the city without a bridge. This is also how visitors get to San Francisco from the city’s main airport. Another route is via the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, which enters the city from the east side of San Francisco Bay. Neither the streets of the peninsula nor the Bay Bridge are as cinematic or iconic as the Golden Gate Bridge.


Why the Golden Gate Bridge movie bug is a problem


Showing audiences the wrong way to travel from the South to San Francisco could get them lost if they ever decide to make the trip themselves. All these cult fans of Minions: The Rise of Gru can now be confused and wondering why they are not driving over the Golden Gate Bridge and deviating from their route. Or they leave San Francisco and head to the North Bay, thinking they need to cross the Golden Gate Bridge even though they’re already in the city. Another reason this common film and TV show blunder is a problem is that viewers-turned-tourists are left disappointed when they realize they don’t have the city on their travels from the south or east can enter the Golden Gate Bridge.


How Minions 2 could have fixed the Golden Gate Bridge movie glitch


Otto and Biker in Minions 2 Rise of Gru

There’s actually a chance that’s oddly popular Minions: The Rise of Gru makes no mistake with the depiction of Otto and the biker entering San Francisco over the Golden Gate Bridge. The duo could actually have gone from Death Valley to north San Francisco and then down the coast. This would explain another apparent error where they are navigating along the California coast with the water on their right. If they ride north along the coast, the sea would be on their left. So maybe they were actually riding south along the coast. Of course, that would mean that Otto and the biker would unnecessarily make the long journey from Death Valley to San Francisco Minions: The Rise of Gru and would have taken the Golden Gate Bridge to enter the city. That’s a possible explanation for the error, but it’s very unlikely.


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