Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
- Mel Gibson - William Wallace
- Sophie Marceau - Princess Isabelle
- Patrick McGoohan - King Edward I
- Catherine McCormack - Murron
- Brendan Gleeson - Hamish
- Ian Bannen - Robert the Bruce's leprous father
- Alun Armstrong - Mornay
- Michael Byrne - Smythe
- Liam Carney - Sean
- Bernard Horsfall - Balliol
- Phil Kelly - Farmer
- Sean McGinley - MacClannough
- Tam White - MacGregor
- Joe Savino - Chief Assassin
- Ralph Riach - Priest No 1
- David O'Hara - Stephen
- Niall O'Brien - English General No 2
- Alex Norton - Bride's Father
- Martin Murphy - Lord Talmadge
- Peter Mullan - Veteran
- Barry McGovern - King's Advisor No 2
- Tommy Flanagan - Morrison
- Julie Austin - Mrs Morrison
- James Robinson - Young William
- Donal Gibson - Stewart
- Rupert Vansittart - Lord Bottoms
- Alan Tall - Elder Stewart
- Robert Paterson - Priest No 2
- John Murtagh - Lochlan
- Gerard McSorley - Cheltham
- Jeanne Marine - Nicolette
- Sean Lawlor - Malcolm Wallace
- Sandy Nelson - John Wallace
- Malcolm Tierney - Magistrate
- James Cosmo - Campbell
- David McKay - Young Soldier
- Brian Cox - Argyle Wallace
- Mal Whyte - Jailor
- Angus MacFadyen - Robert the Bruce
- Jimmy Keogh - Drinker No 2
- John Kavanagh - Craig
- Peter Hanly - Prince Edward
- Martin Dempsey - Drinker No 1
- Martin Dunne - Lord Dolecroft
- David Gant - Chief Justice/Executioner
Braveheart is historically inaccurate, even by Hollywood standards; it would take a good deal of space to note all the differences. Some of them are nitpicking (e.g. describing Robert the Bruce as "Earl of Bruce", when in fact his title before he became king was Earl of Carrick) although cumulatively they could annoy some people.
Some of the inaccuracies can be justified for artistic reasons. The anachronistic kilts and blue makeup worn by the Scots make the rebels more visually distinctive, the incomplete armor and missing helmets allow viewers to recognize the actors, and changes to characters and names make the story easier to follow. However, not all the changes improve the story. For example, Wallace's show trial in Westminster Hall, which some filmmakers could have made into quite a dramatic scene, is reduced to a brief affair in a side-room.
Here are some of the more significant errors:
- The film's most exorbitant distortion is that Wallace had an affair with Isabella of France, and that she was pregnant with his child (possibly the future Edward III of England) at the time of his execution. As the real Isabella was only a child and still in France at this time, this would have been impossible. (Randall Wallace may not have completely invented this idea, he may have been inspired by a play The Wallace by Sydney Goodsir Smith which unhistorically has Isabella with the English army longing for a "real man".)
- Isabella was never a Princess of Wales as Edward II was already King at the time of their marriage in 1308.
- Gibson was also slammed for his portrayal of Isabella's future husband, Edward II of England (in the film, they are married). Although historians agree that Edward was a homosexual, many took Gibson to task for the demeaning stereotypes he saddles Edward with.
- The Battle of Stirling Bridge, the first battle in the film, was filmed without a bridge. This battle in the film was more like the Battle of Bannockburn 17 years later, with English cavalry charging Scottish schiltrons and being repulsed. The actual battle was more of an ambush of the English as they attempted to cross a bridge. It also makes no mention of Andrew de Moray, Wallace's companion-in-arms at this battle.
- The film shows Irish conscripts switching sides and joining Wallace's forces at the battle of Falkirk. The Irish forces were hired mercenaries who, from all accounts, fought well for Edward I.
- The film implies at the end that Bannockburn was a spontaneous battle. In fact, Bruce had already been fighting the English for 8 years.
- Edward I's second wife, Margaret, whom he married in 1299 (in the middle to the time of the film) is absent from the film, apparently giving the impression his first wife Eleanor of Castile was his only wife.
- Wallace's long-standing hatred for the English may not have been because of his wife's death, according to one legend it was because two English soldiers challenged Wallace over some fish he had caught. The argument escalated into a fight, resulting in Wallace killing the soldiers.
For a historical treatment of events see the William Wallace entry.
In 1997 a statue of Gibson as "William Wallace" was placed in the car-park of the Wallace Monument near Stirling, Scotland. The statue, which includes the word "Braveheart" on Wallace's shield, was the cause of much controversy and one local resident stated that it was wrong to "desecrate the main memorial to Wallace with a lump of crap". In 1998 the statue was vandalised by someone who smashed the face in with a hammer. After repairs were made, the statue was encased in a cage at night to prevent further vandalism. This has only incited more calls for the statue to be removed as it now appears that the Gibson/Wallace figure is imprisoned. The irony is compounded by the fact that the statue bears the word "Freedom" on the plinth.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details