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The Patriot (2000)



Average Rating: 6.1/10
Reviews Counted: 133
Fresh: 82 | Rotten: 51

The Patriot can be entertaining to watch, but it relies too much on formula and melodrama.


Average Rating: 5.3/10
Critic Reviews: 31
Fresh: 15 | Rotten: 16

The Patriot can be entertaining to watch, but it relies too much on formula and melodrama.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 421,207

My Rating

Movie Info

Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin, the director/producer team responsible for such sci-fi blockbusters as Independence Day, Stargate, and Godzilla, take a step back in time with this drama set during the American Revolution. Farmer Benjamin Martin (Mel Gibson) was born and raised in South Carolina, and fought bravely during the French-Indian wars. But since the death of his wife, Benjamin has renounced violence and quietly tends his crops, raising his seven children alone. In 1776, over Benjamin's


Drama, Action & Adventure

Robert Rodat

Apr 25, 2006


Columbia Pictures - Official Site External Icon

Watch It Now


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All Critics (153) | Top Critics (34) | Fresh (82) | Rotten (51) | DVD (37)

Emmerich's battle scenes may look authentic to anyone who has ever stared hard at a history book, but in every other way the film is long, empty and bogus.

June 18, 2002 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Comments (6)
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Make no mistake about it: The Patriot is a cartoon, even if it does have real people playing the parts.

March 22, 2002 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A grand yarn with a sense of the weight of history and an awareness that the winners are often those who have lost the most.

August 9, 2001 Full Review Source:
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Deserves a salute as the first Hollywood epic about the American Revolution to successfully blend ferocity and feeling.

May 10, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A movie of cornball sentiment, humorously anachronistic dialogue, and expensive Colonial Williamsburg sets.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
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I enjoyed the strength and conviction of Gibson's performance, the sweep of the battle scenes, and the absurdity of the British caricatures.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

has its moments

January 26, 2013 Full Review Source: Old School Reviews
Old School Reviews

Many graphic battle scenes, not for all teens.

December 28, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media | Comments (2)
Common Sense Media

While his hero is conscience-stricken about killing, Emmerich sure enjoys serving it up in generous helpings.

September 12, 2007 | Comments (2)
Looking Closer

A big-budget epic of the American Revolution, with Mel Gibson, of all people, leading the charge.

August 1, 2007 Full Review Source: Bangor Daily News (Maine)
Bangor Daily News (Maine)

Bloody, overlong and straining for significance ...

January 29, 2005 Full Review Source: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette | Comment (1)
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Often melodramatic and manipulative but it is solid, involving filmmaking so one willingly takes the ride it offers.

July 14, 2004
Jam! Movies

It's the plot that's hackneyed.

July 14, 2004
Jam! Movies

The Patriot is best when it focuses on Gibson. Unfortunately, half the time it focuses on Ledger.

May 30, 2003 Full Review | Comments (4)
Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)

It's the best film ever made about the Revolutionary War.

December 8, 2002 Full Review Source: Film Threat | Comment (1)
Film Threat

The main irony, of course, lies in the film's title, which suggests that the absurdly flag-waving activist should be taken at face value despite the ample evidence that defending his country is the last thing on his mind.

December 2, 2002 Full Review Source: Sight and Sound | Comments (2)
Sight and Sound

It's a spectacular, well-made epic that I just could not enjoy -- at least not after the first hour.

October 15, 2002 Full Review Source: Cincinnati Enquirer
Cincinnati Enquirer

It's near sadistic how the film has him going though so much tragedy and self-questioning, but Gibson delivers emotionally.

September 10, 2002 Full Review Source: Montreal Film Journal
Montreal Film Journal

By the time Martin begins waving around a gigantic American flag to rally his supporters for one last clash, the film has become so mechanical and jingoistic you might just as well be watching "Declaration of Independence Day."

June 10, 2002 Full Review Source: Kalamazoo Gazette
Kalamazoo Gazette

La película está muy bien realizada, pero, por desgracia está realizada al más puro estilo Hollywood.

June 3, 2002

O filme apresenta claros indícios de que Roland Emmerich está amadurecendo.

May 31, 2002 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

Its convictions may be half-baked, but it has the courage of them.

May 8, 2002 Full Review Source: Decent Films Guide
Decent Films Guide

A stunning-looking, undeniably compelling but empty-headed shoot 'em up.

April 3, 2002 Full Review Source: Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Seattle Post-Intelligencer honest depiction of warfare that focuses on characters and symbols.

November 3, 2001 Full Review Source: Trades

Audience Reviews for The Patriot

I'm ashamed to admit that I really, really like this film considering who the director is. So let me say that the film drags in lots of places. And the acting, while good, is not excellent. I encourage rental as opposed to purchase.
October 27, 2012

Super Reviewer

03/09/2012 (Blu-Ray)
September 3, 2012

Super Reviewer

Colonel William Tavington: Let it be known if you harbor the enemy you will lose your home. 

"Some things are worth fighting for."

I have seen The Patriot countless times by now, and yet I still love it. While a lot of epics seem distant and cold, this one has an amazing amount of heart involved. That isn't to say that it isn't the violent war film it is notable for. There's an extreme amount of blood, but in between the battles, there's also an extreme amount of feeling. The film is long, but not a second is wasted. There's always something going on. If there isn't a battle going on, there's character development or plot development. This film is as much about family as it is about the Revolutionary War. There's a humungous cast of good actors, some big names(Mel Gibson, Heath Ledger, Tom Wilkinson) and a variety of other character actors(Joely Richardson, Donald Logue). Besides being just another war movie, this has a lot more going on. It's at times beautiful, at times brutal, at times sad, at times humorous, and at times exciting. 

The Patriot centers the Revolutionary War around a man named Benjamin Martin and his involvement in the war. At first he doesn't want South Carolina to go to war along with some of the other colonies because he knows innocent people will die. When the war happens in his front yard and one of his sons is murdered by Tavington(a truly good villain), he joins up. The Continental Army is vastly undermanned, which brings up the usage of guerilla warfare, which Martin and his militia use to great effectiveness. His men aren't real soldiers, but "farmers." They are just ordinary men who join up to fight off the Redcoats.

The most notable thing about the film is obviously the battle scenes. They are violent and pretty realistic. The battle scenes are filmed beautifully, for lack of a better word. This is easily Ronald Emmerich's best film. He's done some other stuff that is fun, but not what you'd call great filmmaking(Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow, 2012), but this is grand, epic filmmaking. I know there's a lot of people out there that don't believe this film to be great, but I certainly don't agree with them. As far as war epics go, this is about as big and good as they can come. I'm not saying it is the best war movie ever, but it deserves more respect then it has gotten.

It's an emotionally powerful movie in my opinion. Sure it shows a fictionalized story on how America came to be through the Revolutionary War, but the family themes of the movie is what shine through more then anything else. There's a lot of big themes going on here too: freedom, love, honor, respect, revenge, and perseverance; but in the end, family is the biggest theme. The Patriot just misses being a complete masterpiece, but as it is, it's still an amazing achievement and a great film.
July 28, 2012
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

Appallingly bloody but nevertheless greatly poignant epic stars Mel Gibson as Benjamin Martin, a hero in the French and Indian War, but preferring to just be a farmer. He is shocked to find that his son Gabriel (Heath Ledger) will soon enlist to fight in what we now know as the American Revolution, and in protection of his son, Benjamin diffidently returns to fight for freedom from the brutal British.

If you're looking for a war film that is beyond simply decent, I would highly recommend THE PATRIOT. At the Oscars, it was nominated three times (Best Cinematography, Best Original Score, Best Sound), and the only thing that truly cuts it down from absolute supremacy is its running time--165 minutes in length, as well as an extended edition released with an extra ten minutes.

Full Review:
November 26, 2011

Super Reviewer

    1. Colonel William Tavington: It appears that you are not the better man.
    2. Gabriel Martin: You're right. My sons were better men [stabs him in the neck]
    – Submitted by Jayakrishnan R (20 months ago)
    1. Colonel William Tavington: You are not a good man.
    2. Gabriel Martin: But, my sons were good men. [stabs him in the neck]
    – Submitted by Jayakrishnan R (20 months ago)
    1. Colonel William Tavington: You know it's an ugly business doing one's duty, but just occasionally. It's a real pleasure.
    – Submitted by Alex K (21 months ago)
    1. Colonel William Tavington: Let it be known if you harbor the enemy you will lose your home.
    – Submitted by Alex K (21 months ago)
    1. Gabriel Martin: [shouting] I'm not a child.
    2. Benjamin Martin: [shouting] You're my child.
    – Submitted by Alex K (23 months ago)
    1. Colonel William Tavington: Would you like a lesson, sir, in the rules of war? Or perhaps your children would?
    – Submitted by Alex K (23 months ago)
View all quotes (26)

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