"Braveheart": Historically Inaccurate
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The author argues that the popular Mel Gibson film, "Braveheart," is historically inaccurate. Through reference to specific scenes and incidents, the author discusses the extent to which the film confuses the history of William Wallace and his myth, obscures facts, and misrepresents traditional symbols.
From the Paper:"Hollywood has offered the world many great historical epics that have survived over the years and are watched by generation after generation. These films include the "Ten Commanders," "Cleopatra," and more recently, "Troy," "Alexander," and "Braveheart." These films are magnificent epics that, from the audience's view point, bring the past alive. As Bruce Wallace observes about Mel Gibson's " Braveheart," the film "is on people's lips so much that it has become contemporary." It has brought the life of a man who has been dead for 800 years alive. However, from the viewpoint of historians, these films are not good because they distort history and invent facts just to attract audiences and profits. As Robert Brent Toplin writes in an article on the way that Hollywood films treat history, the films do not accurately present the past but are "innovative approaches to looking at the past" (1216). Historians argue that historical films are distorting the past and complain that Hollywood has "compromised, stretched, abused and fabricated" history(1210). This criticism, even though it sounds very hard, is correct. There is little respect for the facts in Hollywood's historical films and this claim is completely supportable through an analysis of Mel Gibson's historical epic " Braveheart." Now audiences are misled into assuming that this film is the life of Willliam Wallace, one of Scotland's most famous and important thirteenth century patriots. In no place, throughout the film there is not any hint at all that shows the events presented are not factual or that there may be any historical inaccuracies. The audience, instead,sits throughout the film believing that this is history. However, it is not. As emphasized by Graeme Morton, the life of willliam Wallace is based more on myths than on history and there are only a few known and supported facts about the life of this Scottish hero. "Braveheart" does not clarify the difference between myth and history, bases the film on a source which historians object to, disregards important symbols and in the final analysis, misleads audiences into believing that this is a historically factual film while it is not."
Cite this Film Review:
"Braveheart": Historically Inaccurate (2005, June 19) Retrieved May 08, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/film-review/braveheart-historically-inaccurate-59454/
""Braveheart": Historically Inaccurate" 19 June 2005. Web. 08 May. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/film-review/braveheart-historically-inaccurate-59454/>