A Few Things That Went Wrong in the Patriot

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  • Topic: World War II, The Patriot, Banastre Tarleton
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A Few Things That Went Wrong in the Patriot

Presented to:
Barry Reynolds

Simon Lamy

On April 10th 2006

Roland Emmerich's 'The Patriot' is a romanced story taking place during the Independence war and depicting the impact of the militia on the United States victory over England; but there are a couple of things wrong with this movie; notably some misconceptions in the main themes and some flagrant historical discrepancies.

The theme of patriotism in this movie is spectacularly absent. The period represented in the historical events which they attempt to depict will indeed invoke ideas of patriotism; but as we sink deeper and deeper in this action-packed, violence-packed movie, we realized that the main characters and most of the ones revolving around them have other motives than patriotism.

For example, Benjamin Martin, the story hero, has already been through the war fighting for the English and never wants to live this again. When his sun is killed by Colonel Tavington, the malicious English officer, he swears to kill them by the end of the war therefore turning this story of so-called patriotism is one of vengeance. In addition to that, the black slaves that join the militia do it to gain their freedom, not because of a sense of patriotism.

The movie is very aesthetically pleasing; it really renders what most of us picture when we think of the Independence war era. Great detail is put into costumes, buildings, battlefields and role-playing to bring us back into this era. This has for effect to give the impression to the viewer that what he is watching has some historical value when in fact it is purely a story of fiction and is merely based on some century old legends and a couple of documented facts about the war. This is brilliantly demonstrated when Colonel Tavington, the character vaguely based on an actual English officer called Banastre Tarleton, herds all the townspeople into the church and sets fire to it, killing...
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