Braveheart: William Wallace And English King Eduard I

1351 words - 5 pages

The film “Braveheart” is a period film which follows courageous William Wallace in his struggle against the oppressive English King, Edward I. However this film is filled with a plethora of inaccuracies, ranging from costumes to relationships. While William Wallace did in fact lead a rebellion against the English in 1296. He was victorious at the battle of Sterling Bridge. And he was indeed executed after his capture. However that’s about the only thing that Mel Gibson got right when producing this film, the other parts of the film were either distorted facts or completely fabricated. In the film Wallace was portrayed as a poor Scottish yeoman, in reality he was a landing owning commoner with a decent education. In defiance of English rule Wallace and many others did refuse to sign the Ragman Roll which pledged allegiance to King Edward I.
Wallace in conjunction with Andrew Moray created an army of these outlawed men. Moray was not really mentioned in the film at all after his death in sterling bridge. Previous to this rebellion Wallace was involved with a woman; however he was unable to settle down because of his constant hiding and fighting. Wallace was involved in a romantic relationship, but he was unable to settle down due to spending his entire adult life at war or in hiding. At one point he was hiding, the English discovered him and this woman saved his life by stalling to allow Wallace time to escape. She and the rest of the men in hiding were murdered.
When watching “Braveheart” it is possible to confuse William Wallace as the person who first used spears in combat. However it was common knowledge that the spear had been used for years before his existence. Gibson also misrepresented their fighting formations which did not include a mob scene but was instead Schiltrons (circular formations). During the battle of Falkirk, Wallace was shown going into battle against the wishes of the other Scottish commanders. Wallace was not knighted until after the battle at Sterling Bridge, this title gave him power which can be compared to a King. After the battle of Falkirk in which Wallace and King Edward I get into a conflict. Another inaccuracy is in the costuming. During Wallace’s time kilts were not worn, in fact in the history of the region in Scotland of his origin Kilts were not worn. So scenes like the one when Wallace is on a horse with a kilt misrepresent the actual clothing of the time.
The director took several liberties with the actual history in order to keep the viewer’s attention. He fabricated an entire romantic subplot between Wallace and Princess Isabella. Princesses were rarely used as envoys, especially on such important missions. The boring truth is that Wallace was married to a woman named Marion. Although it was unlikely that he met her, it was even more unlikely that she was as sympathetic to the Scottish cause as portrayed. However without this beautiful damsel, who tried to assist the poor yeoman Scotsman who she...

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