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What’s Wrong with Private Jackson’s Sniper Rifle? (Saving Private Ryan)

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Today we are going to take a look at how Private Jackson’s sniper rifle is portrayed in Saving Private Ryan. It’s a great movie, and I enjoyed it a lot – but this sniper rifle is incorrect in every scene…

At the beginning of the film, the rifle is shown as an M1903A4 (which is appropriate) but with a Lyman Alaskan scope (which is wrong). Next, it is shown with interchangeable scopes, the seconds one being an 8x Unertl. While the Unertl was used by Marine Corps snipers, it is not interchangeable with the M1903A4’s Weaver M73B1 scope. Just to make it fit on the prop gun, the mounts have to be changed. finally, when it’s actually used with the Unertl, the scope does not move like it should, and Jackson tries to change his windage by adjusting the scope’s parallax (whoops).

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