Otherwise, this film hooked me well into its story, and it has a very strong spiritual aspect. The love that was consummated (twice) struck me as more of the spirit than of the flesh. 3 Stars 9-14-1997 (Updated)
Excellent Film! 1995 Best Picture! The acting is amazing, and the ending was brilliant. For me, all my guesses were incorrect. Everything that happens in this movie in unpredicted. The last half hour itself was highly unpredictable, and it had a powerful message. When a scene was meant to be dramatic, they did a great job at it. The message the movie sent kept me thinking for a while. The amount of courage and bravery was inconceivable, there was barely any faults or anything wrong with the movie. For a movie of 1995, they did a great job. Everything in this film was done tastefully. I love Robert's last line "You have bled with Wallace! Now bleed with me!" and the army stands and continues their struggling battles for freedom! This is such an inspirational movie with a powerful message "Every man dies, but not every man really lives" to a tearful ending that will make anyone shed a tear to a terrific heartfelt sound track, it's no wonder this won best picture with other Oscars. This is a movie, a terrific one that everyone should enjoy and watch. Well recommended! Go see this if you haven't!
William Wallace is a Scottish rebel who leads an uprising against the cruel English ruler Edward the Longshanks, who wishes to inherit the crown of Scotland for himself. When he was a young boy, William Wallace's father and brother, along with many others, lost their lives trying to free Scotland. Once he loses another of his loved ones, William Wallace begins his long quest to make Scotland free once and for all, along with the assistance of Robert the Bruce.
Gibson does feel kinda miscast to be honest, he's too much of a 80's action man, too Hollywood, they needed someone alittle less well known and a bit more gruff, but the rest are near perfect especially McGoohan as the English king. The film really hits the spot with the battles, the rest is alittle dull but needed for the emotionally packed story and ending but the battles are some of the most fierce and brutal battles I've seen on film. I think this film started off the tidal wave of historical epics with extremely realistic brutal clashes as it was a real shock when first viewing at the cinema. Truly monumental pitched battles in this film, no mercy haha.
Warning, it is very tearful near the finale, very well done, but the adrenaline sure does kick in ;)
Even though the more pedantic of people would correct me, telling me that it's a drama, there's no denying the action tones; not just the blood and guts but the whole idea of a guy who's pushed to the edge and then shows the audience that he has mad fighting skills. However, this is not truly what the film is about, though this will be the only part that Jason Statham fans will be able to stay awake for because, oh no! here comes intellectual stuff! Braveheart is an in-depth look at William Wallace and the events surrounding him. It is political, moving and powerful as well as all the action bits. Mel Gibson's acting and direction are spot on in every case, giving a wonderfully restrained performance and showing the viewer the toll that the hardships have taken upon him. Even though he goes crazy and kills every one in the beginning of the film, at that time there is no cheering from the audience no awe-inspiring spectacle for the viewer to feast upon. Instead, it is a moving and almost heart-breaking scene for the viewer, as they experience the anguish that Wallace must be going through. In this way Braveheart differs from it's action film cousins, giving its characters actual character, and it is all the better because of it.
The film is a very difficult nigh three hours long, but watching it is a gift, as each scene is filled with emotion and sincerity in performance. This film fully deserves the slew of Oscars which it recieved and to this day is regarded as one of the all time great pieces of cinema, and rightly so.
The final cry of "FREEEEEEEEDOOOOOOM!!!!!!!" which will make your hair stand on end, I don't care who you are.
Set in Britain in the 13th Century the plot, based largely on myth about the Scottish renegade, sees a young William Wallace (James Robinson) witness the brutal murder of his father (Sean Lawlor) at the hands of English occupiers. He is taken under the wing of his wise Uncle Argyle (Brian Cox) and grows up under his guardianship. Wallace (now played by Mel Gibson) returns home an educated man, falls in love with a beautiful local girl Murron (Catherine MacCormack) and marries her. However, when English soldiers rape and murder his wife, Wallace mounts a rebellion, bringing him into conflict with both the English King Edward Longshanks (Patrick MacGoohan) and duplicitious Scottish nobles, led by Robert the Bruce (Angus MacFayden)...
The film makes no effort whatsoever in regards to historical accuracy, and the the characters come off (with variable success) as simplistic stereotypes. There is nothing wrong with most of this, but some stereotypes could have been avoided, in particular the portrayal of King Edward's son as a snivelling homosexual fop. By necessity the English are the villains, with the Scots either passionate warriors or double-dealing nobles. Whilst the anti-English sentiment is a touch overdone (a character exclaims "Excellent!" when he's told he'll get to kill the English), it doesn't seriously harm the film.
Gibson has thankfully not Americanised his tale by asking American actors to assume fake Scottish brogues. With the exception of Gibson himself, almost everyone's accent here is natural and the film is better for it. Gibson delivers his all as Wallace, managing a passable Scottish accent. His Wallace is a Scottish Mad Max, only savvier, more sentimental and with a powerful patriotic streak. The character, though, lacks the ambiguity to make him a realistic personality. The film sees nothing questionable in Wallace invading England, effectively lowering himself to the level of his former oppressors.
As for the supporting players, Patrick MacGoohan quietly evinces menace as the ruthless King, and Sophie Marceau makes the most of her limited role as the Princess of Wales. Angus McFayden gives a sympathetic portrayal of a torn Robert the Bruce, and Brendan Gleeson and David O'Hara provide solid backup as Wallace's trustiest allies.
The battle scenes in the film are frenetically staged, with lots of quick editing plus copious amounts of blood and gore. They are well put together, but the endless slicing, dicing and skewering becomes repetitive after a while. Woven into the tale is a gentle Celtic score by James Horner.
Whilst it has stirred interest in Scottish interest and heritage (including the life of the real William Wallace), taken on its own terms, "Braveheart" is an enjoyable action film and should not be taken any more seriously than that.