What is wrong with the film, The Patriot?

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What is wrong with the film, The Patriot?

Postby temporary guy » Tue Feb 28, 2006 5:40 pm

saw it for the first time the other night on the box......

<<<<<<I am in it of course <<<<<<but sans blue paint.


caveat <all above comments are opinions - any resemblance to facts alive or dead is entirely coincidental >

caveat inspired by a true caveat by Guthrie. ;-)

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Postby m300572 » Tue Feb 28, 2006 5:54 pm

What's wrong with it - the Mel Gibson school of historical accuracy is what's wrong with it!!



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Postby Guest » Tue Feb 28, 2006 6:02 pm

......taking nazi war crimes and rewriting them into the18thC and attributing them to the British, but hey why let truth interfere with a ropey story.



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Postby WorkMonkey » Tue Feb 28, 2006 6:48 pm

there weren't enough Celts in it, that's what!


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Postby Jim Smith » Tue Feb 28, 2006 7:49 pm

Like Guest says, taking the worst excesses of the Waffen SS and having them enacted out by the Evil British - or to be strictly accurate in the History According to Hollywood Bible - the Evil English. Saw the film when it first came out and regretted it. It did motivate me to do a little checking up on my own account though and as far as I could judge, neither side during the War of Independence ever herded civilians into buildings before locking the doors and applying the torches!

The film is just another example of Hollywood playing fast and loose with a history it obviously considers terminally boring. Mind you, don't we English make a better class of bad guy!

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Postby Medicus Matt » Tue Feb 28, 2006 7:53 pm

Good carnage though. One of the few films to show that cannon fire could do more than just make people fall over.

Other than that, pants. Can't wait for Gibson's take on Boudicca - that'll be even handed eh? :evil:


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Postby Caius » Tue Feb 28, 2006 8:39 pm

Moderator! Can this thread be modified or deleted?

At the moment it gives the impression that there is some historical merit in this `film'. Other than portraying the intense anti-English bias in Hollywood in the last years of the 20th Century.

Surely it would be better to say `What is right about The Patriot'. That way I would say:

1.) The British soldiers sometimes wore red jackets.
2.) It was fought in America.
3.) They used guns.
4.) Erm....


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Postby Alan_F » Tue Feb 28, 2006 9:31 pm

Especially bad is the portrayal of Cornwallis and Howe as butchers - Howe was actually sympathetic to the cause of the Colonials.

There's also the rewriting of Black American History in it. At the time, the British Army allowed black soldiers to serve in its ranks, yet the film not only shows black men in the ranks of the Continental army, they are being treated as equals, something that is extremely far from the truth.

All in all, another reason why I think Mel Gibson is a complete and utter ar5e.


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Postby guthrie » Tue Feb 28, 2006 10:23 pm

I'll tell you whats wrong- the english are portrayed as evil, when we all know that they conquered the world out of the goodness of their own hearts!



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Postby Jim Smith » Tue Feb 28, 2006 10:47 pm

Alan F - good points - especially re: Howe and Cornwallis.

Guthrie: Of course - good to see someone from north of the wall finally admitting to it. :wink:
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Postby Alan_F » Tue Feb 28, 2006 10:58 pm

Jim, what I find truly galling is that Hollywood shies away from showing slavery in American history, unless it's in a film like Glory which was made to make the Americans feel good about themselves. Why can't Hollywood have the guts like French cinema has to show the good and the bad?


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Postby steve stanley » Tue Feb 28, 2006 11:24 pm

Interesting it only shows a token Loyalist in Tavington/Tarleton's unit....which was recruited in the Colonies..The Partisan war in the South was mainly fought between Americans..but that would mean showing Americans committing atrocities..on both sides..Oh well,the battle scenes are passable..Anyone remember "Sweet Liberty"...The Producer insists on putting Tarleton's men in red"So the audience will know they're British"...Art imitating Art?
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Postby MedicKitten » Tue Feb 28, 2006 11:50 pm

What's the "partisan war"? i'm a Yankee myself, so i really dont have the slightest idea what you mean...


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Postby steve stanley » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:03 am

OK.....After Cornwallis beat the Rebel Regular units,he recruited large numbers of local Loyalists to act as "internal security" as his field army advanced. These were mainly opposed by Rebel militia....On both sides,pre-war grudges did a lot to determine which side you chose..for a parallel, think of the Jayhawker/Border Ruffian struggle in Kansas/Missouri before & during the ACW...."The Patriot" could just as well have showed a Loyalist family's tribulations at Rebel hands.....
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Postby MedicKitten » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:22 am

OH! gotcha. on THIS side of the pond the whole thing is still "the American Revolution"...we just assume that it was all "loyal patriots" versus "pansy loyalists"
yeah...i know...its pathetic...but some people still think that the south WON the ACW!


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Postby steve stanley » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:25 am

Going to Virginia on holiday this year...Do they know they lost??
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Postby MedicKitten » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:47 am

North or South in Virginia? :D
it could very well be that they dont quite know yet...i'm pretty certain that Williamsburg figured it out a while ago, but they seem much better informed than some of their countrymen. I'm from so far north that it doesnt even matter...we're due to be annexed by Canada any day now...


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Postby steve stanley » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:52 am

Must admit Williamsburg is going to be my personal highspot..that's where we finish after Washington,Baltimore,Roanoke & Richmond....looks like US history 101..Jamestown to Appomattox....why bother with Canada..you've behaved for 200 years..ask nicely & we'll take you back......
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Postby El gone to Cid » Wed Mar 01, 2006 1:40 am

"..ask nicely & we'll take you back......"

Who's this 'we'll', Steve? :D

OH yeah - bouncing cannonballs and a wonderful 'ping' as his head came off. Loved that bit :twisted:
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Postby David F » Wed Mar 01, 2006 1:40 am

What's wrong with "The Patriot?" I resent any film that has me rooting for the Red Coats!!!

Actually the Brittish baddie, is loosly based on Banastre Tarlton (I think that how you spell it), Who was, it has to be said a bit of a ruffian, then again the people who he was fighting were no better, and as someone has pointed out most of his crew were colonials.
It seems that the first draft of the Yorktown surrender document contained a clause demanding Tarlton's head, the French slapped the yanks about and told them to get civilised. Still working on it...

Another thing wrong with the b****y film, the French presence is reduced to one character who is there for comic relief. It was the French what won the war for the Yanks. of course that won't go down well in the US these days.


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Postby Gyrthofhwicce » Wed Mar 01, 2006 10:31 am

I thought it was just Braveheart without the Kilts.

I think Mr Gibson has a chip on his shoulder about the British, maybe his family was shipped to Australia for stealing bread or somesuch, and it has deeply affected his psyche.

Whatever, the mans a damn fool. Can you imagine what would have happened if he had made the King Arthur film, and we thought it couldnt have been any worse. :wink: :D


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Postby Medicus Matt » Wed Mar 01, 2006 11:42 am

Gyrthofhwicce wrote:Can you imagine what would have happened if he had made the King Arthur film, and we thought it couldnt have been any worse. :wink: :D


Oooh, he'd have gotten horribly confused...who would have had the British accents...Germanus and his roman troops, the fat fool in his Scottish villa north of the Wall, the Germanic invaders.... ohhhh the confusion.

And presumably Arthur and his knights would all be 'Merkins and the Woads would all have First Nation accents.

Still, bet the combat scenes would have been better. Mel as leader of the Picts, axe in each hand, running under the Romans horses without having to duck...."I remember the Woad Warrior, the one they called Maximus".


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Postby Alan_F » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:16 pm

Medicus Matt wrote:
Gyrthofhwicce wrote:Can you imagine what would have happened if he had made the King Arthur film, and we thought it couldnt have been any worse. :wink: :D


Oooh, he'd have gotten horribly confused...who would have had the British accents...Germanus and his roman troops, the fat fool in his Scottish villa north of the Wall, the Germanic invaders.... ohhhh the confusion.

And presumably Arthur and his knights would all be 'Merkins and the Woads would all have First Nation accents.

Still, bet the combat scenes would have been better. Mel as leader of the Picts, axe in each hand, running under the Romans horses without having to duck...."I remember the Woad Warrior, the one they called Maximus".


I can just see it now - the scene where Arthur pulls the sword out of the constitution..... :twisted:


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Postby steve stanley » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:16 pm

If you fancy a alternative version of the film....go to Http://BanastreTarleton.org/ click on dragoontoons & look at chickflick of the summer........
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Postby Nigel » Wed Mar 01, 2006 12:52 pm

Bored and found this

As I understand it a certain cinema was refused ppermission in Liverpool to show the patriot

Banastre Tarleton was born to upper middle-class parents in Liverpool, England, on August 21, 1754. At the University College, Oxford, he studied toward a law degree but was better known for his athletic abilities, participating in cricket, boxing, riding, and tennis. He was small physically, yet strong and active.
He was soon to use these athletic skills in the military, when on April 20, 1775, after exhausting his finances through gambling and other "fashionable amusements," he purchased a rank in the First Regiment of Dragoon Guards. His military career offered him adventure and opportunities for advancement, and, more importantly, led him to America and shaped his destiny in history.
At twenty-three, he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel of the British Legion.
His abilities led to initial success in the Revolutionary War, in both the Northern and Southern Campaigns.2 His use of light infantry3 in combination with his cavalry4 made a powerful combat team. He set a strong pace for his men to follow, and, in effect, led by example. Militia were said to panic at the sight of his green-jacketed dragoons5 He was so effective that Cornwallis wrote: "I wish you would get three legions, and divide yourself into three parts: We can do no good without you."
Tarleton's early success included raids on upstate New York, and action in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. In the Carolinas he took an active part in the battles of Monck's Corner,6 Charleston,7 the Waxhaws,8 Camden,9 Fishing Creek,10 Blackstocks,11 and Cowpens12.
It was in the Waxhaws that Tarleton came to symbolize British cruelty in the Revolutionary War. There were numerous versions, however, of what actually happened in the Waxhaws. Traditionally, Tarleton was seen as a "butcher" when , it was said, America forces under Buford laid down their arms in an attempt to surrender yet the British continued their assault. From then on, his reputation grew and "Tarleton's quarter"13, in effect, came to mean "no quarter."
"Tarleton's quarter" was to become a rallying cry at the Battle of Cowpens. Tarleton, then only twenty-six, had been charged with covering the Carolina upcountry against Patriot guerillas. Specifically, he was to seek out and destroy a threat to his rear, a wing of the American Southern Army, commanded by General Daniel Morgan. By January 12, 1781, he was closing in on Morgan, pushing his men on, fording the rain-swollen Enoree, Tyger, and Pacolet Rivers. Morgan, on the other hand, suddenly halted a desperate retreat, was joined by more militia, and parlayed the fear and hatred of Tarleton into victory at Cowpens in the South Carolina Upcountry.
At Cowpens, January 17, 1781, Morgan appeared to take into account Tarleton's tendency to rush the attack. His collapsing lines (skirmishers, militia, and Continentals14) brought the tired (having marched since two in the morning) but confident British in prematurely, in effect, exposing them to heavy fire. As the Continentals pinned the British down, militia cavalry would crush them in a flank attack. A mistaken command to retreat drew the British in even more, and, when the retreat was stopped, the Continental line turned and fired with devastating results. In the ensuing panic, the American cavalry, already engaged in battle, flanked the British left, leading to double envelopment and victory and a turning point in the war in the South.
At battle's end, American cavalry leader William Washington, in mad pursuit of the defiant Tarleton along the Green River Road, engaged the British commander in a dramatic hand-to-hand encounter, in which Washington barely escaped with his life. With the approach of American riflemen, Tarleton, with fifty-four of his supporters, abandoned the battle and fled east toward the British camp, never to be caught up with.
Tarleton would draw criticism from older officers who believed he lacked "military maturity." Held by some to be personally responsible for the death of some fine officers and veteran troops, Tarleton subsequently submitted his resignation but it was not accepted. He continued to fight on in later battles even with some amount of success, but the relationship with Cornwallis was strained after the British defeat at Cowpens. Posted across the river from Yorktown,15 he surrendered his forces about the same time as Cornwallis.
In the tradition of the day, American officers hosted the defeated Cornwallis and other British officers at their respective tables. But no American invited Tarleton nor would any eat with him. Tarleton asked if the omission was accidental, and he was told that, indeed it was not, because of his past atrocities.
Tarleton returned to England a hero and was eventually promoted to the rank of General. Back in Liverpool, he was elected to Parliament, knighted, and published his History. His pursuit of pleasure and his fifteen-year liaison with the author-actress, Mary Robinson, found him little favor with his constituents, leading to an off and on political career. Estranged from Mary Robinson and graying at age forty-three he met and married Susan Priscilla Bertie on December 17, 1798. He lived a long life, but would never admit to any fault at Cowpens, saying he was outnumbered and received inadequate assistance from Cornwallis. He wondered. "how some unforeseen event" could "throw terror into the most disciplined soldiers".
Banastre Tarleton's place in history goes beyond this defeat and his image as a "butcher". He is often not given credit for his genius in strategy. It is true he practiced total war -- burning houses, destroying crops, the end justifying the means -- when the European ideal was limited war confined to a field of battle. In effect, he was probably no more brutal then some other British officers and even some American officers. But, at the Waxhaws, his reputation for brutality stuck, as Patriot officers encouraged fear and anxiety of "butcher" Tarleton for propaganda purposes.
Banastre Tarleton, who died childless on January 16, 1833, at the age of seventy-eight, was buried in Leintwardine Churchyard. He was one of the most controversial figures in the American Revolution, possibly remembered in America more than in his native country.


There’s a country in Europe where they treat their ex soldiers with pride no waits for medical treatment after injuries received during service, no amensia from the government. Cant for the life of me recall where it is but I know exactly where it is not.

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Postby Alan_F » Wed Mar 01, 2006 3:05 pm

Gyrthofhwicce wrote:I thought it was just Braveheart without the Kilts.

I think Mr Gibson has a chip on his shoulder about the British, maybe his family was shipped to Australia for stealing bread or somesuch, and it has deeply affected his psyche.

Whatever, the mans a damn fool. Can you imagine what would have happened if he had made the King Arthur film, and we thought it couldnt have been any worse. :wink: :D


Gibson isn't even an Australian: His family is from the US, his father took the family to live there when he saw that the US Government had introduced conscription for the Vietnam War as he didn't want Mel to fight in it. Something that Mel fails to mention when playing Vietnam war vets....

I think the anti-English (or British) thing comes from whom his target audience is: He isn't aiming for an international audience per se, it's more those in the US who think they have some sort of historic argument with the English notably the Irish-Americans (as seen with Irishmen fighting on the Scottish side in Braveheart) or those who can't think beyond the idea that anyone outside of the US is so envious of the country as to hate it.

What will be interesting to see is what is the long-term backlash against this: With British troops serving alongside American troops in Iraw and elsewhere, how long will it be before his anti-English crusade falls out of favour?


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Postby Everild Sweordbora » Wed Mar 01, 2006 3:43 pm

"What will be interesting to see is what is the long-term backlash against this: With British troops serving alongside American troops in Iraw and elsewhere, how long will it be before his anti-English crusade falls out of favour?"

Interesting question there, Alan.

Woah, Nigel - long post, but very, very interesting. Thanks! I have to admit, I didn't really know a lot about the actual history that um....'inspired' the Patriot - thanks, that increased my knowledge somewhat. ;)

Braveheart was the first Gibson film I ever saw. Ever since then I've taken all his films with a rather large pinch of salt. Well, more of a shovel-full of salt, actually.


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Postby Alan_F » Wed Mar 01, 2006 3:53 pm

What is amazing about Gibson is that he is, given a decent script, a not bad actor. He actually wasn't that bad as Hamlet - he had the age right and seemed to fit the temprament beautifully. He was really good in The year of Living Dangerously and his performance as Fletcher Christian in The Bounty was first rate. But now he seems to have soured all that good work with dross like Braveheart and The Patriot. It also sours people's views of his other war movie, Gallipoli.


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Postby Nigel » Wed Mar 01, 2006 4:07 pm

Belive it or not

reverse the patriot in terms of characters and its pretty ok remember the American swere rebels under arms therefore guilty of treason one penalty of r that death simple really. I recently met a nice American couple who freely admitted without everybody else joining the line to admiister a kicking thye could not have won the war.

That and our generals incompetance too I suppose.

We were soldiers once was pretty near right as far as it went

It omits the kicking the NA administered the next day to 1/5th 1st Cav

I would honestly recommned the book written by Hal Moore as a must read

Tarleton has always been a hero of mine after I saw the pic by Reynolds of him


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Postby Alan_F » Wed Mar 01, 2006 4:19 pm

Didn't Hal Moore die on 9/11? If he's teh guy I'm thinking of, he was heroic right up to the end - trying to get others out and putting others before him.


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