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Film / Braveheart

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"Now tell me, what does that mean, to be noble? Your title gives you claim to the throne of our country, but men don't follow titles, they follow courage."
William Wallace

A 1995 film directed by, produced by, and starring Mel Gibson, and written by Randall Wallace, a self-proclaimed Real Life descendant of the main character. Braveheart tells the extremely fictionalized story of the legendary Scottish rebel William Wallace and his revolution against King Edward the Longshanks of England, in which he battled for the freedom of Scotland, even though it led to his death. This film is infamous among historians for its many inaccuracies and creative liberties.

Wallace starts as a simple farmer who only wants to live a peaceful life with his beloved wife Murron (Catherine McCormack), despite his father's death at the hands of the English. Unfortunately, he stops the rape of his wife by marauding English soldiers, and after the English magistrate executes her in retaliation, Wallace takes the fight to the English authorities, with the rest of his country following suit. As the whole of Scotland is drawn into the rebellion against England, Wallace takes command of the Scottish army to kick ass... for FREEDOM!

The cast also includes Patrick McGoohan as Edward I "Longshanks", King of England, Peter Hanly as a young Edward II, Sophie Marceau as Princess Isabella of France, and Angus Macfadyen as Robert the Bruce (later King of Scotland). The film won five awards at the 1995 Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

This film provides examples of:

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  • Actually, I Am Him: As William Wallace arrives at Stirling before battle.
    Wallace: Sons of Scotland, I am William Wallace!
    Scottish Soldier: William Wallace is seven feet tall!
    Wallace: Yes, I've heard. Kills men by the hundreds, and if he were here, he'd consume the English with fireballs from his eyes and bolts of lightning from his arse!
    (the Scottish Army laughs)
    Wallace: I am William Wallace!
  • Adventurous Irish Violins: Braveheart is in love with this trope; it's a wonderful example of its flexibility, for although the heroes are Scots-Highlanders (and an Irishman), the passionate strains of said trope in the musical score still flawlessly evoke the highland spirit of energetic playfulness, savage bloodlust, and energetically playful savage bloodlust.
  • All Crimes Are Equal: "An assault on the king's soldiers is the same as an assault on the king himself."
  • All There in the Manual: The novelization written by Randall Wallace provides a more historically accurate depiction of the battle of Stirling Bridge (though Moray still isn't in it). It also explicitly confirms that Prince Edward's companion, called Phillip, is indeed his lover.
  • Alone-with-Prisoner Ploy: Princess Isabella demands some time alone with Wallace in his cell, so she could pass him a sedative which he refuses to take.
  • Anachronism Stew: The film depicts the Medieval Scots as wearing both blue woad face paint (which was possibly a practice of the ancient Britons, that pop culture transplants to the Picts, who lived in Scotland before the Scots, and is seen in general use no later than the Roman occupation) and kilts (which didn't come into fashion in Scotland until the 16th century).
  • Annoying Arrows: Zig-Zagged. During Wallace's assault on the magistrate who murdered Murron, Campbell the Elder gets hit by an arrow, making Hamish stop to try taking it out, until his father hits him for his foolishness. It gets cauterized afterwards. Later, during the Battle of Falkirk, as the English gain the upper hand with their volleys of arrows, Wallace is struck by one, making him stop, but is well enough to pursue Longshanks' knight, Robert the Bruce.
  • Anti-Cavalry: When the Scottish army encounters the English infantry, the Scots taunt them into attacking with heavy cavalry. As soon as the English are too close to pull back, the Scots drop their facade and pick up long pikes, which slaughter the horses.
  • Anti-Villain: Robert the Bruce is definitely not a bad person, and really does seem to admire Wallace, but he is also weak and easily manipulated by his father, who convinces him to go along with the nobles' betrayal of Wallace at Falkirk. Seeing Wallace's face fraught with despair once he learns that Robert has betrayed him makes the Bruce realize he was wrong, and he saves Wallace's life while making a determined Heel–Face Turn in the process. When his father uses him to betray Wallace yet again, he makes it clear to his old man, in no uncertain terms, that he is now forever dead to him.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: The working class Scottish villagers get pitted against the snobbish, aristocratic Norman nobles led by King Edward.
  • Armor Is Useless: The heavy armor worn by the English seems to provide no advantage whatsoever over the Scottish troops, who have almost no armor at all.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Robert Bruce protests that the nobles are afraid to commit to Wallace because their land and titles are too much to risk. Wallace's response:
    Wallace: And the common man who bleeds on the battlefield; Does he risk less?
  • Arrows on Fire: Justified, as they are used to ignite flaming tar.
  • Artistic License – History: Has its own page.
  • Attempted Rape: Murron and the English soldiers.
  • Badass Army: The Scotsmen, who stand up to an English army that outnumbers them and is better equipped.
  • Badass Boast: "They may take our lives, but they'll never take our FREEDOM!" This has become a popular meme.
  • Balcony Wooing Scene: In one scene the hero is at odds with his love interest's parents so he has to resort to throwing stones at her window to catch her attention. Played for laughs as he doesn't recognize that she already opened the window, thus his third stone almost hits her.
  • Barbarian Hero: Mel Gibson's choice of costume design for the Scottish Warriors deliberately invokes this image, the better to emphasize "the courageous underdog takes down tyrants with superior technology and equipment" narrative; visually, they closer resembled the Celtic Warriors who beat back Julius Caesar's armies during the reign of the Roman Empire than actual Medieval Scottish Warriors (to whom in the Real Life 1300's metal armor was common even among the infantry), but in spirit they are all the more Mystically Heroic for it as a result.
  • Battle Cry: "FREEEEEEEDOM!" and "ALBA GU BRATH!"note 
  • Battering Ram: Wallace and his men are seen ramming in the gate to York. This gets an added Incendiary Exponent - if the door doesn't fall down, it can burn down.
  • The Beard: Prince Edward is gay but must take a wife to continue the line of succession.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Murron is backhanded by a soldier and knocked off a horse by a spear to the face, but she still looks pretty good. See also Gory Discretion Shot.
  • Betrayal by Inaction: At the Battle of Falkirk, Lochlan and Mornay show up with their soldiers on the Scottish side, but once the battle has started and it's their time to charge, they simply turn around and leave the battlefield, hoping the Scottish army will be destroyed by the English.
  • BFS: Wallace's claymore. It slices, it dices, it cuts warhorses down and then takes heads off with one swing. Which is one part of the film that was somewhat close to the historical record.
  • Big Badass Battle Sequence: Both the Battle of Stirling Bridge and the Battle of Falkirk are epic ones.
  • Big Good: William Wallace, of course. After his death, Robert the Bruce and Queen Isabella share the role for Scotland and England, respectively.
  • Big Word Shout: Wallace shouts "FREEDOM!", as his last word, until he is out of breath.
  • Bilingual Backfire: The princess speaks with her courtiers in Latin, but Wallace knows Latin as well as French.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Princess Isabella of France has conversations with her handmaiden in French, though it is mostly subtitled. At one point her handmaiden reveals to Isabella that she heard her husband is sending a new English army north to crush Wallace's rebellion. Surprised at how she knows this, the handmaiden then explains that one of the members of her husband's war council let it slip while she was having sex with him. Embarrassed, Isabella says he shouldn't have told her sensitive information like that in bed. The handmaiden quips that Englishmen don't know what a tongue is for (i.e. cunnilingus). The TV edit doesn't leave out the line, it simply changes the subtitles to read "Englishmen don't know what a bed is for" - but anyone with a basic high school level knowledge of French can fully recognize what she really said.
  • Bittersweet Ending: William Wallace gets executed in the end, but his soldiers fight on and end up winning the war.
  • Black Knight: William Wallace duels a character like this late during the Battle of Falkirk, complete with a Dramatic Unmask.
  • The Blade Always Lands Pointy End In: Done in the ending sequence with Wallace's claymore.
  • Blood Is the New Black: William Wallace is seen walking around after the battles with the enemy's blood on his face.
  • Blood Knight: Stephen the Irishman. He seems to have only joined the Scots because he'll be able to kill Englishmen, not to help the Scots to get freedom.
  • Bloodless Carnage: In the case of Murron's death. The magistrate clearly slit her throat, yet her wound is obscured from view and there is no blood on the knife. But this may be a goof.
  • Bolivian Army Ending: The movie ends with Robert the Bruce leading his ragtag Scottish army against the superior English army. The trope is then subverted when Wallace (narrating the epilogue), explains that the Scots manage to eventually win their freedom.
  • Brave Scot: All of the Scots who fight the English.
  • Bulletproof Human Shield: During the rebellion against the local English garrison, Campbell the Elder is shielding himself from hailing arrows with a dead English soldier in front of him. One arrow still hits him in the chest.
  • Bury Your Gays: The prince's male lover being murdered by King Edward by throwing said lover out a tall window right in front of the prince. In real life, Gaveston was Prince Edward's Royal Favorite, but it's not known with certainty that they were lovers. Gaveston was eventually captured and executed, but not by Edward I; he was beheaded during Edward II's reign by noblemen who found him odious, and it had more to do with Edward's favoritism than explicitly with homosexuality. So it's unlikely the makers of the film intended Philip to be Gaveston. They more likely assumed Edward would have had other male lovers in his youth.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Robert the Bruce does this twice to his father: first after standing alongside Longshanks at Falkirk, which led to a humiliating defeat for the Scots, and again after Wallace gets captured.
  • The Call Knows Where You Live: And it's going to make sure Wallace doesn't try to avoid his destiny of fighting...
  • Call That a Formation?: Played depressingly straight. The Scottish infantry fought as disciplined pike formations, it was their lack of armour and cavalry which made them so vulnerable to the longbow. (Also, what wasn't in those days?) They would not have charged wildly into battle, but advanced in disciplined rows in order to push back cavalry and infantry with massed ranks. The Scots didn't win the battles where they managed to close for battle with the individually more skilled English knights for no reason.
  • Call to Agriculture: The movie starts with the hero choosing this trope: After his father's death and a Time Skip, the now-adult William Wallace returns to Scotland after several years fighting in The Crusades, heartily sick of war and with no interest in being drawn into talk of rebellion. He sticks to this proclamation until English soldiers murder his wife.
    William: I came home to raise crops and, God willing, a family.
  • Camera Abuse: At Stirling, Morrison smashes a man's head in, and blood splatters on the camera.
  • Catapult Nightmare: Mornay has a nightmare about Wallace haunting him, which makes him wake up in this fashion. Then Wallace comes charging in and kills him for real.
  • Cavalry Betrayal: Very literally, at the battle of Falkirk, when Mornay and Lachlan lead their cavalry off the field rather than charge in at Wallace's signal. They were paid off by Longshanks prior to the battle.
  • Chekhov's Hobby: As a boy, William mentions to his uncle Argyle that he doesn't know Latin, to which Argyle replies "Well, that's something we shall have to remedy.". As an adult, Wallace tells Murron he can speak Latin as well as French. His fluency in both helps him as he faces Princess Isabella and her adviser, as mentioned in Bilingual Backfire.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: When the English show up to the wedding and the magistrate takes the bride for Prima Noctae, we see a brief shot of the guard who will later attempt to rape Murron and start the whole thing. All he does is leer at first.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: William and Murron meet as children and become lovers later in life.
  • Costume Drama: The film was Oscar-nominated for Best Costume Design but lost out to Restoration.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Averted. While the real William Wallace was hanged, drawn, and quartered for his troubles, the way he's executed in the film is far less graphic than the actual way it was done, even though the steps undertaken are loosely based on it.
  • Concepts Are Cheap: Wallace speaks a lot about "freedom" and uses it to motivate and unite Scotland, but aside from "freedom from English Rule" he doesn't elaborate on what is so great about it or how Scottish rule would be any better. Scotland has the same system of oppressive nobility as England, the Scottish nobles are corrupt and out only for themselves, and the clans can barely keep from fighting each other.
  • Crucified Hero Shot: For his execution, William Wallace is tied to a cross-like wooden block, that makes him adopt this pose.
  • Cultured Badass: William Wallace is foremost a Barbarian Hero, but he is also fluent in Latin and French.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: The revolt at Lanark, where the Scottish villagers ambush and massacre the entire English garrison without taking a single casualty.
  • Death Glare:
    • There's no way to read that glare William gives the closest guy, moments before his rebellion begins, as saying anything other than a very emphatic and determined "I'm going to kill you now."
    • Also William in Mornay's nightmare.
  • Death of a Child: There's the hanged kid in the stable, a view that gives young William nightmares.
  • Decapitation Presentation: After they sacked York, William has the head of the Duke of York cut off and sent back to the king in a basket.
  • Defiant to the End: Wallace during his trial and execution.
  • Despair Event Horizon: After Mornay and Lochlan betray Wallace and lead their cavalry off the field at Falkirk, Wallace gets an arrow to the shoulder, but musters a Heroic Second Wind to mount a horse and make a suicidal charge at the king. When he's unhorsed he pulls a dagger and unmasks the knight who knocked him down. When he sees that it's Robert the Bruce, all the fight goes out of him and he just lies down. This triggers Robert's Heel Realization and he helps Stephen get Wallace off the field.
  • Destination Defenestration: King Edward grows annoyed with his son's friend (and implied lover) and tosses him out the window.
  • The Determinator: Wallace during his trial. Even the English crowd, who at first calls for his blood, eventually get sick of seeing the torture and eventually start calling out for mercy. He was defiant to the end against the English.
  • Dirty Coward: The Scottish noblemen who sell out their own countrymen at the Battle of Falkirk in exchange for lands and titles. Wallace gives several of them a very brutal payback for this.
  • Disposable Woman: Murron dies to set the plot in motion.
  • The Dog Bites Back:
    • After Longshanks's Kick the Dog moment against his son's best friend and possible lover — Edward II finally snaps, and tries to kill the old man in Revenge. Sadly subverted, though; Longshanks easily defends himself, then simply abuses his son even more.
    • Done less directly during the final climax, where Edward very smugly observes his father on his death bed, with Longshanks lacking the strength to dish anything beyond a "Oh, you're so enjoying this, aren't you?" Death Glare.
  • Doomed Hometown: Seems to be the case at first, but then subverted as the townspeople rise up in rebellion and end up completely kicking the collective butts of the English soldiers who've been holding their town hostage.
  • Doomed Moral Victor: William Wallace builds an army to drive the English garrison out, gets betrayed, captured, refuses to bow before the king, and is tortured and killed. But his spirit lives on.
  • Dramatic Unmask: Robert the Bruce, while fighting on the English side.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Twice.
    • First William dresses like an English soldier to help his wife get out of town. His efforts are to no avail.
    • Later he and his allies infiltrate an English fort by disguising themselves as English soldiers.
    English Commander: I have dispatched 100 soldiers to Lanark! They will be returning now!
    Wallace: Were they dressed like this?
  • Droit du Seigneur: Called prima nocte in this movie, instated by Longshanks to win support for the lords and to keep the Scots under their thumb. Morrison and his wife are two of many people who suffer under this, and when Morrison confronts Lord Bottom, the lord responsible for raping his wife, during Wallace's attack on the English garrison, he invokes "the right of a husband" by killing him.
    • Modern medieval historians are irate that - without exaggeration - this film singlehandedly impressed upon the public consciousness that Droit du Seigneur was ever a real thing. Particularly glaring is that the very existence of prima nocte in the real Middle Ages had been thoroughly debunked for a century before this movie was released.
  • *Drool* Hello: Before Lochlan is thrown on Robert the Bruce's dinner table from above, there is blood dripping onto the bread served.
  • The Dung Ages: This wasn't the first work to feature the trope by any means, but the movie certainly popularized it and made it a much more common sight in period fiction.
  • Epic Flail:
    • How Wallace exacts revenge on Mornay.
    • After losing his left hand at the Battle of Stirling, Campbell the Elder spends the rest of the movie using a flail.
  • Eternally Pearly-White Teeth: Check out the pearly white smile of Murron the 13th century Scottish peasant.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Wallace when Robert the Bruce is unmasked at Falkirk.
  • Every Man Has His Price: Longshanks bribes Wallace's cavalry into deserting the field at the battle of Falkirk.
  • Everyone Has Standards: The crowd of English townsfolk eagerly howl and cheer at Wallace's impending execution by evisceration. Wallace can receive the mercy of having his throat cut to quickly end his suffering at any time if he will simply confess that Edward I is the rightful king of Scotland, but he refuses. His evisceration slowly continues - to the point that the English crowd's laughter dies in their throats, and they become so horrified at the actual spectacle that the entire crowd starts shouting and begging to give him mercy and end his suffering.
  • Everything's Louder with Bagpipes: With the caveat that they're Uilleann pipes rather than the Highland bagpipe.
  • Evil Chancellor: Robert the Bruce's father is this to Robert until the latter calls him out on this.
  • Evil Counterpart: While evil may be a bit strong in this case (ineffectual is perhaps more appropriate), Prince Edward II essentially serves this role to Robert the Bruce in how both are young men with the (at least apparent) destiny to become king and are held within the grip of a controlling father.
  • Evil Old Folks: Edward the Longshanks is an elder, but a downright cruel and sadistic elder who'll stop at nothing when it comes to making his enemies suffer.
  • Expecting Someone Taller: At the Battle of Stirling:
    Scottish Soldier #1: It's William Wallace.
    Scottish Soldier #2: Can't be. Not tall enough.
  • Extreme Mêlée Revenge: Morrison dishes some out to Lord Bottom for invoking primae noctis on his wife, followed by a Spiteful Spit.
    Morrison: (Grin of Rage) Do ye remember me?
    Bottom: (terrified) I never did her any harm! It was my right!
    Morrison: (smile drops) Your right? Well I'm here to claim the right of a husband!!!
  • Eye Take: Robert the Bruce's eyes widen creepily when he sees Lochlan with a slit throat lying on his dinner table.
  • Fictionalized Death Account: Downplayed. The future Edward II has a lover by the name of Philip who, for history buffs, is a fairly obvious stand-in for Piers Gaveston, the notorious "favorite" of Edward II. Gaveston lived into the reign of Edward II until some unruly nobles took matters into their hands and killed him, in the film Philip is thrown out a window by Edward I long before Edward II becomes king.
  • Fighting Irish: Wallace's most eagerly violent soldier is an Irishman who joined the campaign not for the sake of freedom, but for the chance to kill Englishmen. He's also insane, or deeply religious with a sick sense of humor.
    • A little from column A, a little from column B!
  • Fisticuff-Provoking Comment: Two from Wallace, answered both times with a sucker punch from Hamish.
    • First, after Wallace returns home from his travels and Hamish challenges him to a rock-throwing contest.
      Wallace: The test of a soldier is not in his arm. That's here. *points to his own forehead with his middle finger*
      Hamish: No. It's here. *uppercut*
    • Then later, when Wallace is about to leave to meet with Robert the Bruce:
      Hamish: Your dream isn't about freedom. It's about Murron! You're doing this to be a hero, because you think she sees you!
      Wallace: Wrong. I don't think she sees me. I know she does. And your father sees you too. *gets decked*
  • Foreshadowing: Mad Stephen does it best at the Battle of Stirling:
    Stephen: The Lord tells me he can get me out of this mess, but he's pretty sure: you're fucked.
  • Friends All Along: The Scottish and Irish troops.
    Longshanks: Irish...

  • Genius Bruiser: Wallace is a combination of Barbarian Hero and Cultured Badass.
  • Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!: Wallace and his men are willing to die for their freedom.
    William Wallace: And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willin' to trade ALL the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take... OUR FREEDOM!"
  • Going Commando: The Scottish warriors are naked under their kilt which they demonstrate when mooning the English forces.
  • Good is Not Nice: Wallace is unquestionably devoted to Scotland's freedom and is The Hero, but also sacks York (offscreen) and burns English soldiers alive after they try to trap him.
  • Go Out with a Smile: William Wallace smiles during his final moment. He sees the spirit of his dead wife among the crowd smiling at him as he is being brutally tortured to death.
  • Gorn: Mostly averted... though in the original cut, Wallace's execution by disemboweling was this.
  • Gory Discretion Shot:
    • When the magistrate cuts Murron's throat, it's not explicitly shown. The camera cuts to a close-up of her eyes as they first widen, then slowly droop as she bleeds out. In contrast, when Wallace does the magistrate, it's shown in vivid detail.
    • We do not see the moment when Wallace's head is cut off. The ax moves in slow motion, and we know that he's dead when his hand opens. We also don't see him being disemboweled, instead being shown a close-up of his face while it's happening, but we have a good idea of what's going on due to the pantomime show put on by the little people before the execution.
  • Gossip Evolution:
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: "ALBA GU BRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATH!" sort of counts. That is Scottish Gaelic, but the film is in English. There's also the Campbell-led chant of "MACAULISH!" after the Battle of Stirling, which might be confusing if you don't know the word is Scots Gaelic for "Son of Wallace".
  • Heal It with Booze: William's childhood pal Hamish and his father Campbell have just helped him defeat the local English lord, but Campbell sustained an arrow wound in the process. He's blind drunk on whisky awaiting his son and friends helping him to Heal It With Fire. After a comedy moment where first one, and then a second clansmen say "Here, you do it, [cauterise the wound with the poker], I'll hold him down!", Campbell asks Hamish to pour some on the wound first: "Pour it straight in the wound, boy. I know it seems like a waste of good whiskey, but indulge me."
  • Heal It With Fire: Hamish's father needs to have a wound cauterized with a red hot iron after receiving an arrow to the shoulder. In a nice nod to how such a thing might have played out in those days, whisky gets a lot of use both as an anesthetic and disinfectant.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Robert the Bruce goes from neutral to allies, then betrays Wallace at the Battle of Falkirk, only to come to his senses again after a My God, What Have I Done? moment. Eventually, he becomes an Unwitting Pawn to Wallace's capture.
  • Heroic BSoD:
    • Happens to Wallace after he finds out who betrayed him at the Battle of Falkirk. His previous anger instantly vanishes and he goes numb.
    • Bruce himself gets one later on when his father's machinations lead to Wallace's betrayal and capture.
  • The Hero Dies: Wallace himself at the end.
  • Hidden Weapons: When pretending to hand himself over to the local English garrison, Wallace hides a flail behind his back which he then pulls out to start his Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Historical Badass Upgrade: William Wallace was either this or a downgrade, depending on your point of view. The real William Wallace really was close to 7 feet tall for a start, and did quite a bit of the stuff he does in the film (not all of it, but it does cut out other badass feats as well). Of course, he was also a textbook example of The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized and Would Hurt a Child, but being a bastard doesn't make him not a badass.
  • Historical Beauty Update: The real Longshanks had a drooping eyelid and a lisp. The film removes these traits, presumably to make Longshanks more formidable.
  • Historical Hero Upgrade:
    • Wallace is made a lot more important than Robert Bruce, and the third key figure in the war, Bishop William de Lamberton, was cut out altogether. Another character cut out was Andrew de Moray, another Scottish noble who died after the battle of Stirling Bridge. Some historians have argued that his contribution to the war was just as important and more successful than William Wallace's.
    • The real Wallace was a son of minor nobility, and not only was he not a Highland barbarian Still Fighting the Civil War of the Picts against Romans, he was a Lord with tenants, serfs and the works. In real-life the Scots pre-emptively attacked the English and Wallace invaded England sacking and pillage villages and attacking English peasants and serfs along the way.
    • Surprisingly, the future Queen Isabella "the She-Wolf" of France got this one as well.
  • Historical Relationship Overhaul:
    • Robert the Bruce didn't betray Wallace. Everyone else, sure, but never Wallace, mostly because the two never met and Wallace never backed Bruce's claim to the throne; he preferred freeing John Balliol from English domination.
    • William Wallace and Isabella of France did not have an affair and he was not the father of her son because she was six years old and living in France at the time of his execution.
  • Historical Villain Upgrade: Scots understandably take a dim view of Edward I, as do the Welsh with equally good reason, but the English quite correctly regard him as one of their best kings. He was also an excellent husband and father. Whether or not he knew of Edward II's proclivities, he certainly didn't kill any of his male lovers.note 
    • Of course there's one undoubtedly villainous action that Longshanks is associated with, that curiously gets no mention in the film, his raging anti-semitism which led him to expel all Jews from England, something that would easily paint him as a bad guy to modern audiences instead of the invented nastiness of Droit du Seigneur, but presumably Gibson didn't find that sufficiently nasty.
    • Prince Edward gets a strange form of this. Edward II is generally regarded as a brave and athletic man who became a mediocre king and was widely rumored to be in homosexual relationships with his extremely close male favorites. In the film, he's made into a Camp Gay Sissy Villain.
  • Hollywood History: The film is full of historical misconceptions beyond those intentional rearrangements mentioned under Artistic License – History:
    • Blue body paint (Woad) for battles had stopped being used around the end of the Roman era - roughly 800 years before the events of the film.
    • While the movie took great care to depict several groups all dressed alike in their representative tartans (the plaid pattern on the kilts), the use of clan tartans and any organized rules for kilts and patterns was a Victorian invention, much later than the time of the movie.
    • Unlike the Iron Age wasteland depicted in the film, Scotland at the time was the destination of many trade routes, and Scots had access to luxuries such as silk, spices and glass. Scotland had lavish cities and towns just like England, but the film depicts all of them living in filthy mud hovels. Real life Scotland at the time fielded armies with equipment and training entirely on par with English troops.
    • While it is true that one of the earliest records of the "schiltron" (a circular formation of pikemen wielding extremely long anticavalry spears) was the Battle of Stirling Bridge, putting up a wall of shields and long spears is a tactic dating back to Roman times, and pikes date back to prehistoric times. Wallace hardly invented either.
    • Edward I and the members of his court spoke French, not English; this could be written off as part of the Translation Convention, except that the Queen and her lady are shown speaking French. However, the English court spoke an Anglo-Norman dialect of French while Isabelle would have spoken Parisian French. At the time these were as different as Cockney and Geordie.
    • Evidence overwhelmingly points to Primae noctis or Droit du Seigneur — the right of a Lord to take the virginity of serf maidens within his lands — being a fabrication of the modern era. Medieval marriage was controlled by The Church, which has typically championed marital fidelity. If any lord tried to claim the "right" to rape another man's wife, the least he could expect was excommunication, along with an almost certain peasant revolt (as Machiavelli wrote in The Prince a ruler could get away with a lot of things, but taking people's wives wasn't one of them). So, it's not that some lords didn't take advantage of their power to rape peasant women - they did. The claim that lords believed they had a legal right to it is almost certainly a fabrication. Word of God on the DVD commentary notes that they did this to make the English more villainous and they were well aware it was never a real thing.
    • Bagpipes were not outlawed in 13th-century Scotland. They were outlawed in the 18th century after Scotland and England had become one country (the UK) and the north of Scotland, the Highlands, had been the breeding ground of several 'Jacobite' rebellions/mini-Civil Wars.
    • The Battle of Bannockburn is shown as the Scotts unexpectedly attacking an English force that's only there as a formality while Robert swears his fealty to Edward II. The actual battle was the English trying to lift the siege of Sterling Castle several years into Robert's rebellion, long after they had both claimed their respective thrones.
  • Hollywood Tactics:
    • Longshanks' tactics are extremely wasteful and seem more designed to show what a bastard he is than to actually be effective. He doesn't use his archers against the Scots at first, preferring to send the Irish conscripts because "Arrows cost money; [...] the dead cost nothing." But then he fires his arrows anyway, after his troops are engaged in melee, guaranteeing friendly fire. Why? "We Have Reserves."
    • The Scots aren't innocent of it either, with their complete lack of massed pike or any real discipline whatsoever. Oddly enough, this winds up making the English look more competent than they were in at least one case. The Battle of Stirling in the movie features the two sides launching berserker charges at each other on an open field with neither side having polearms, with the Scots somehow winning a decisive victory in close combat despite wearing almost no armor and being outnumbered against the heavily armed and armored English troops. The historical Battle of Stirling Bridge saw the English launching a frontal assault across uneven ground and a narrow bridge against a Scottish pike wall. Also in the real battle, Scots were wearing armor similar to what the English troops had.
    • When foot soldiers abandon their formation to intermingle in a chaotic melee with massive casualties on both sides, it's almost always Hollywood Tactics. Before modern warfare, troops stayed in close order, forming pike blocks, shield walls, and so on where the men could support one another and prevent all-out carnage.
    • The film treats using a hedge of long spears against horsemen as a revolutionary idea. It certainly wasn't. The idea goes back to antiquity. What was new was the Scottish schiltrons formations. These were circular formations that presented pikes out toward the enemy in 360 degrees, rather like a hedgehog. At Falkirk, Edward I called back his knights before they took too many losses and just had his archers open fire on the schiltrons. Defenseless against bowmen, the schiltrons collapsed quickly afterward.
    • Also during the battle at Falkirk, Wallace's troops shoot flaming arrows to set the field below the enemy on fire, having laid pitch there the night before. Which begs the question of how Wallace knew the English soldiers would form up on those spots and not notice the lines of pitch (or if they did, why they'd choose to stand on them).
    • Charging and storming castles was always a last resort and a very good way to take massive casualties. Attacks on fortifications were almost always long, drawn-out sieges in that era. Wallace never sacked York, and he would never have just rushed his men with practically no siege gear at a castle with that many defenders as shown in the film.
    • Boiling oil? No. Oil was expensive and hard to keep hot. Sand and water are cheaper and just as effective. Try to imagine how quickly heated sand would get through your armor. Other good options that were used include rocks, burning sulfur, and even beehives.
  • I Shall Taunt You: After Wallace rejects the terms at the Battle of Stirling Bridge, and rallies the Scottish troops, this starts when one of the Scots steps forward from their lines and lifts up his tunic, flashing the English. The other Scottish troops, including Wallace, follow suit, before rushing behind their shields for the first barrage of arrows. After that barrage, all the Scots moon the English.
    • One of the Scottish troops was too slow to block the second barrage of arrows, and ended up taking an arrow to the arse.
  • Hope Spot: After Wallace rescues Murron from the rapist soldier, he puts her on a horse to ride to their grove while he deals with the aftermath. He watches her ride off until she's out of sight before he sneaks out of town in disguise, and it looks like she'll get away, but then she's knocked off the horse with a spear and captured for execution.
  • I Surrender, Suckers: How William Wallace starts his Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • I Take Offense to That Last One: When Princess Isabella's adviser says, in Latin, about Wallace "He's a bloody, murdering savage. And he's telling lies," Wallace immediately replies in Latin "I never lie. But I am a savage."
  • Incurable Cough of Death: King Edward the Longshanks, though in reality he lived two years beyond Wallace's death and died of dysentery, not consumption.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Prince Edward. He tries so hard to meet his father Longshanks' expectations, but he never does.
  • Inertial Impalement: Invoked when the Scots counter an English cavalry charge by getting them to crash into a wall of crude pikes.
  • Invulnerable Horses: Actually averted. The depiction of horse wounding (mostly at the Battle of Stirling) was so realistic that the film was actually investigated to see if animal cruelty had occurred (don't worry, it was all dummy horses).
  • Karma Houdini: Lord Craig manages to escape Wallace's retribution for the betrayal at Falkirk, and even helps sell him out to the English at the end. The only form of comeuppance he gets is Robert Bruce dashing his hopes for another Royal kickback by choosing to fight at Bannockburn.
  • Karmic Death:
    • The English lord who executes Murron by slitting her throat has his own throat slit by Wallace, using the same exact knife.
    • Longshanks plans for his deathbed to be spent enjoying Wallace's torture and execution. Instead, Wallace's last yell freaks Longshanks out to the point of a heart attack — thus robbing him of said enjoyment, and making him feel some torture of his own — and he dies just-before Wallace.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • Longshanks repeatedly kicks the dog in his treatment of Scotland and throws his son's best friend (and implied lover) out the window.
    • Also Longshanks' decision to have the archers fire at the battleground with no regard to his own men.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: The last mook protecting the magistrate, upon realising he was hopelessly outnumbered gives up with a Sword Plant.
  • Lecherous Licking: One of the magistrate's men is all over Murron with his tongue when he seizes her in a hut.
  • The Lost Lenore: Murron, see also Disposable Woman above. Not all disposable women are also Lost Lenores but Murron fits this trope as her relevance to the story doesn't end with her death. Wallace clearly still loves and mourns her, and she appears in dream sequences and flashbacks.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: The film features a scene in which Scottish soldiers hide under their shields during an arrow barrage. However, it's shown that the arrows can penetrate the shields to a degree.

  • Made of Iron: Campbell the Elder is shot with an arrow, has his hand chopped off, takes an ax to the stomach, and still keeps fighting. That last one finally does him in.
  • Man in a Kilt: Although plaid kilts were introduced only three centuries later, and the Scottish didn't wear them until much later than that (and even then, they were typically saffron or brown, not plaid). Also, no Scotsman of any pre-industrial era would have worn enough cloth to clothe a family to a battle, where it could get cut up and bled on. That much cloth would take the average subsistence-farmer at least a decade of scrimping and saving to buy - cloth was expensive as all get out before extensive inter-continental trade and mechanized spinning and weaving. Flashing and mooning was a combat tactic, however.
  • Manly Tears: After betraying Wallace on the battlefield of Falkirk, Robert the Bruce sheds a tear when giving his Heel–Face Turn speech to his father.
  • Man on Fire: Some Scottish warriors are set on fire by arrows from the English defenders during the battle of York.
  • Market-Based Title: In Taiwan, Braveheart is translated as Mel Gibson's "The True Colors of A Hero" (Ying Xiong Beng Se), which is also the Original Mandarin Title for A Better Tomorrow, another tragedy of Love, Friendship, Courage and Honor, directed by John Woo.
  • Meaningful Funeral: Murron gets one with the whole village attending and lots of crying.
  • Meaningful Look: The wedding, showing how much you can do with a few glances. Watch Prince Edward, his lover Phillip, Princess Isabelle, and King Edward Longshanks. The Prince is not at all attracted to the Princess and would likely much rather run away than go through with the ceremony, or at least replace Isabelle with Phillip. King Edward is aware of his son's sexuality, holds his son in contempt, and absolutely despises Phillip. Isabelle, meanwhile, has no desire to be a part of this and feels trapped. She has no idea what to make of Prince Edward and is intimidated by King Longshanks. Phillip is trying to offer some silent support to Prince Edward, and that royally irks King Edward. All of this is conveyed to the audience with a few meaningful glances, a line of voice-over that hints that Longshanks may try to bed his soon-to-be daughter in law, some unfortunate gay visual coding, and an awkward kiss. The scene lasts seconds.
  • Memento MacGuffin:
    • William's ceremonial cloth that he got from his wife. He carries it with him and when it gets lost on the battle ground, Robert the Bruce picks it up and returns it to William.
    • Also the thistle, that young Murron gave William at his father's burial. He has kept it pressed in a book.
  • Memetic Badass: William Wallace becomes one In-Universe; promptly Lampshaded:
    Young Soldier: William Wallace is seven feet tall!
    William Wallace: Yes, I've heard. Kills men by the hundreds. And if HE were here, he'd consume the English with fireballs from his eyes, and bolts of lightning from his arse!
    • The claim of Wallace being seven feet tall seems ridiculous and standard badass exaggeration since Mel Gibson stands around 5'9" and rather cut. But the real Wallace was described as a giant of a man, standing somewhere between 6'7" and 6'10" and built like a truck. While mildly common nowadays, this would have been 13 to 18 inches taller than the average man of the time and seeing someone that size would likely be a once in a lifetime event.
  • Mexican Standoff: When Stephen the Irishman meets Wallace and his men in the forest, there is a moment where both parties have their knifed/swords drawn and pointed at the opposition's throat.
  • The Middle Ages: The setting is the early 14th century, the High Middle Ages
  • A Minor Kidroduction: Writer Randall Wallace initially planned to start the story with William Wallace as an adult and added the prologue of his childhood only as an afterthought.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • Morrison's wedding, where all the Scots have a good time drinking, dancing and throwing rocks at each other, until Lord Bottom interrupts to "bless their marriage".
    • A guard at Lanark charges at Wallace, then tries to run when Wallace grabs a sledgehammer.
  • Mugged for Disguise: Near the beginning of the film, Wallace steals the uniform off an English soldier in order to get his wife out of town. Later, "Were they dressed like this?"
  • Multi-Melee Master: In addition to his iconic claymore, William Wallace is seen to be proficient with a huge mallet, a flail (both ball-and-chain and hinged stick variants), a dagger, a pike, a deer's antler, a warhammer, an ax, and rocks of various shapes and sizes.
  • Multi-Ranged Master: His uncanny accuracy with thrown rocks is a plot point, and he is also proficient with a bow.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Robert the Bruce suffers from this after seeing Wallace's face at the Battle of Falkirk.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The film's theatrical trailer shows a scene where Wallace is telling Hamish that they'll be different from the English by sparing women and children. This scene does not appear in the final cut of the movie.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: When the Scots struggle to ram open the gates to York, the English help them unwittingly. First, they pour boiling tar on the attackers and then they shoot Arrows on Fire at them. The arrow sets the tar-soaked ram on fire which in turn sets the gate on fire. Problem solved for the Scots.
  • Nightmare Sequence: Mornay's dream of Wallace charging at him out of a firestorm, screaming, and replete in blue warpaint. It then becomes horrific for the viewer given the way Mornay is then dispatched straight afterwards.
  • No Escape but Down: After Wallace rides into Mornay's bedroom to give him an Epic Flail in the face, his escape route leads him out of the door down into the water.
  • Noble Tongue: The royals speak French while the other characters speak English. This is historically accurate, except for the fact that it wouldn't have been modern English, many of the conquered groups had their own language, etc.
  • Obi-Wan Moment: When Campbell the Elder dies, he declares to be a happy man and that he lived long enough to live free. Then he dies with his son sobbing over him.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    Lord Bottom: I have dispatched a hundred soldiers to Lanark! They will be returning now!
    Wallace: (indicating his disguise) Were they dressed like this?
    Lord Bottom: *eyes widen*
    Wallace: Actually, it was more like fifty.
    • The English commander's face at the end of the movie, when he realizes Robert the Bruce and his army are not coming to pay them homage, but are rather charging their line.
      • And right before that, Craig has this reaction when he realizes that Robert the Bruce isn't going to simply pay homage.
  • Onrushing Army: There are Screaming Warrior charges, sure, but there's also archers, cavalry, and Irishmen deployed in various battles before they get to that bit.
  • Pimped-Out Dress: This film avoids Gorgeous Period Dress by averting the fancy clothes, even for the royals. Although Isabella does get some fancy dresses.
  • Plot-Triggering Death: Murron's death is kicking off a Scotland-wide rebellion after William's Roaring Rampage of Revenge against an English oppressor.
  • The Power of Hate: After Robert the Bruce disowns his father, the Elder Robert the Bruce, and wishes for him to die, the Elder Bruce says he's now ready to be king now that he knows hate (oddly enough, in addition to saying this Palpatine-esque line, the Elder Bruce also looks unnervingly like Emperor Palpatine). The Younger Bruce answers, in a calm example of Shut Up, Hannibal!, that his hate will die with the elder Bruce.
  • Precision F-Strike: Stephen: The almighty says "Don't change the subject, answer the fucking question"
  • Produce Pelting: When Wallace is rolled in for his execution, the raving crowd throws vegetables at him.
  • A Protagonist Shall Lead Them: William Wallace, after the call found him.
  • Rain of Arrows: The English use this tactic repeatedly with Welsh longbowmen. In the Battle of Stirling the Scots held their ground and put their shields up, but that didn't completely prevent casualties. In Falkirk, it's used with deadly effectiveness, efficiently shredding the Scottish army (though the English took heavy casualties as well) and wounding Wallace.
  • Rank Scales with Asskicking: King Edward Longshanks is an utter dick, but he's a tough dick, kicking Wallace's ass at Falkirk.
  • Rated M for Manly: Historically inaccurate, but still awesome nonetheless.
  • Refusal of the Call: Wallace refused to fight the English at first, preferring to raise a family and live a quiet farming life.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: What happens to Wallace after finding out Murron was killed by English soldiers. And again after the Scottish nobles betray him at Falkirk.
  • Rose-Tinted Narrative: Lampshaded in the opening narration, as Robert Bruce says "Historians in England will say I am a liar. But history is written by those who have hanged heroes." Not one part of it is correct:
    • Scotland 1280 AD. I shall tell you of William Wallace. Historians from England will say I am a liar, but history is written by those who have hanged heroes. The king of Scotland had died without a son, and the king of England, a cruel pagan known as Edward the Longshanks, claimed the throne of Scotland for himself. Scotland's nobles fought him and fought each other over the crown. So Longshanks invited them to talks of truce — no weapons, one page only. Among the farmers of that shire was Malcolm Wallace, a commoner with his own lands. He had two sons — John and William.
    • In 1280, King Alexander III of Scotland was not only still alive, but his two sons were also alive. The younger son, David, died in 1281; the elder son, Alexander, died in 1284; and finally Alexander III himself died in 1286. Alexander III left a granddaughter, Margaret, acknowledged as his heir by the Scottish nobles. Rather than fighting each other over the crown, the Scots appointed regents who ruled until she died in 1290. At this point, the nobles did not fall into civil war, and Edward did not claim the throne of Scotland. Instead, the Scots nobles asked Edward to preside (as a neutral party) over a commission to determine the rightful king. While Edward did claim overlordship of Scotland and undoubtedly influenced the conclusion, the result was to choose John Balliol as King of Scotland by the normal rules of primogeniture. At no time did Edward invite the nobles of Scotland "to talks of truce — no weapons, one page only". Balliol did start a war against Edward in 1296, because he felt that Edward was being overbearing. Unfortunately for Balliol, Edward was one of the best generals ever to sit on the English throne and beat Balliol handily. Incidentally, Edward was in no sense a "pagan" — there had not been any true pagans in Britain for centuries (he wasn't even a paganus in the Classical Latin sense of "peasant" or "yokel"). In addition, Malcolm Wallace had three sons in 1280. The one left out was the eldest, also named Malcolm.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Say what you will about Longshanks. At least he gets shit done himself. Robert the Bruce also gets to be this at the end of the film.

  • Sad Battle Music: Begins playing once Wallace realizes the two nobles he was relying on for cavalry support instead deserts him, continues on as his own troops are killed by English arrows, until finally he discovers that Robert the Bruce also betrayed him after promising to help (of course, the historical Bruce was not present at the battle).
  • Scenery Porn: The Scottish Highlands are given many lovely shots in this film. John Toll even won his second best Cinematographer Oscar for this film.
  • Scotireland: Despite the film being set in Scotland, and based on the life of a Scottish folk hero, the primary instrument heard throughout the soundtrack (most notably at William's father's funeral) are the Uilleann pipes, which are a smaller traditionally Irish version of bagpipes rather than the ubiquitous Great Highland Bagpipe.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: Longshanks sends Isabella to deliver gold to Wallace in an attempt to buy him out of an invasion of England. Wallace firmly refuses.
    Isabella: He proposes that you withdraw your attack. In return he grants you title, estates, and this chest of gold which I am to pay to you personally.
    Wallace: A lordship and titles. Gold. That I should become Judas?
    Isabella: Peace is made in such ways...
    Wallace: Slaves are made in such ways!
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: Subverted at the Battle of Stirling Bridge. The Scottish forces are outnumbered three to one by the English forces which scare some of the Scots enough to leave the field, which in turn prompts William to deliver his Dare to Be Badass speech that sparks new confidence amongst his men. Invoked by the Scottish cavalry in the same battle, which appear to flee at the start, only to circle back and flank the English.
  • Shaped Like Itself: Longshanks claims that "the trouble with Scotland is that it's full of Scots."
  • Shoot Him, He Has a Wallet!: When Faudron pledges his loyalty to Wallace, he reaches into his coat and is stopped by Hamish, but it turns out he only wanted to pull out a gift for William. He later does try to assassinate Wallace, but is stopped by Stephen the Irishman.
  • Shot in the Ass: A Scottish pikeman gets this treatment. Turns out mooning the English archers wasn't such a good idea after all.
  • Shout-Out: In the DVD commentary track Gibson cheerfully admits to stealing the final scene between Robert the Bruce and his father, the one where the door closes on Papa Bruce, from the shot that ends The Godfather.
  • Sissy Villain: Prince Edward is a vain, frivolous Camp Gay idiot who spends his time making servants carry mirrors around so he can admire his lover and himself in their new outfits.
  • Slashed Throat:
    • Murron gets her throat cut offscreen by the Magistrate.
    • Following his Roaring Rampage of Revenge, Wallace kills the Magistrate the same way, this time shown in vivid detail.
    • Later we see Lochlan lying with a slit throat on Robert the Bruce's dinner table.
  • Smug Snake: Practically every single English character, except Longshanks and Prince Edward.
  • Someone to Remember Him By: Wanting to make Longshanks' victory over Wallace sour, Isabella tells him that the child she is pregnant with, and will one day grow up to be Edward III, was fathered by Wallace, and that Longshanks' bloodline will effectively end with Edward II.
  • Spare a Messenger: William Wallace invades the local English garrison, has the English lord killed and burns it to the ground at the start of the Scottish rebellion, but spares the rest of the garrison's soldiers to send word back to England.
    Wallace: Go back to England and tell them there that Scotland's daughters and her sons are yours no more. Tell them Scotland is free.
  • Stab the Scorpion: Stabbing the would-be assassin in this case. Stephen seems to be attacking Wallace, but is actually taking down a guy trying to kill Wallace.
  • Suddenly Shouting: Used to show how Robert the Bruce is becoming a bit unhinged in the aftermath of Falkirk.
    Random Noble: Lord Craig, is it true about Mornay?
    Craig: Aye. Wallace rode into his bedchamber and killed him. He's more of a liability now than ever he was. And there's no telling who'll be next.
    Robert: Maybe you. Maybe me. *chuckles* Doesn't matter.
    Craig: I'm serious, Robert.
    Robert: *slams table* SO AM I!!!
  • Sympathetic Adulterer: The film portrays William Wallace having an affair with Princess Isabelle of France, wife of the heir apparent Edward II.note  Wallace is a Crusading Widower whose wife was murdered by an English lord. It's portrayed sympathetically in a twofold manner for Isabelle, first because she's in a loveless Arranged Marriage with her husband, strongly implied to be homosexual. She also uses the fact that it was Wallace, not her husband, who impregnated her with the future King of England to taunt the evil Edward Longshanks, who arranged her marriage to his son in the first place.
  • A Thicket of Spears: In the Battle of Stirling Bridge, William Wallace's army forms a schiltron using heavy spears made from tree trunks as a defense against an English cavalry charge. The film inaccurately depicts this as a one-off incident: in actual fact, the schiltron was a core part of Scottish armies throughout the Middle Ages.
  • This Is Gonna Suck:
    • Played for Laughs when the elder Campbell's wound needs to be cauterized. All the Scots attending him are terrified of getting it done, especially the one holding the hot poker.
    • Edward II and Philip while awaiting the King's visit after the disastrous defeat at Stirling. The Prince is visibly pale and struggling to stay on his feet.
  • This Means Warpaint: The Scottish warriors painting themselves with woad.
  • Thousand-Yard Stare: Robert the Bruce, during his My God, What Have I Done? moment when seeing the carnage at Falkirk he helped to commit. Leads shortly thereafter to a Calling the Old Man Out when he tells the elder Bruce he's finally had enough of the "noble way" and declares he will never be on the wrong side again.
  • Together in Death: Wallace and Murron. Possibly due to hallucination, possibly played straight, but for those few moments, together nonetheless.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Phillip, who gives unsolicited advice and acts condescendingly to a very annoyed Longshanks even though everyone knows how ruthless the man is. In a surprise to no one, he throws him out the window to his death.
  • Trap Is the Only Option: Wallace is being warned that the meeting with Robert the Bruce would be a trap and he kind of senses it himself, but he feels it is worth trying because the chance to reunite the Scottish forces is their only hope.
  • Unwanted Spouse: Isabella of France falls (somewhat) into the heroic category when her awful marriage and clear unwanted status leads her into the arms of William Wallace.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Robert the Bruce becomes this at the end when his father uses him to lure William Wallace into a trap.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Wallace and Hamish. Even when they were kids, the two were clearly competitive and prone to roughhousing. Cut to adulthood, the two are still good friends, but can still be a bit rough with each other.
  • Wait Here: When Young William wants to join his father in the fight against the intruders, the latter tells him to stay behind.
  • We ARE Struggling Together: After their major win against the English at Stirling, Wallace is disappointed to see the Scottish nobles feuding with one another over claims to the Scottish throne.
    Wallace: We have beaten the English, but they'll be back because you won't stand together.
    DVD Commentary (Gibson chuckles): ...and in the next shot we see them all standing together.
  • We Have Reserves:
    • The Trope Namer, in this case referring to Longshanks' justification, when called for one, for calling the archers to fire in the middle of a heated infantry battle — granted, his own troops would be hit, but so would the Scots.
    • Also used with sending the Irish conscript infantry in first.
    Longshanks: Arrows cost money. Use up the Irish. The dead cost nothing.
  • Wound That Will Not Heal: Robert Bruce's father is a leper with permanent wounds on his face.
  • Written by the Winners: Robert the Bruce essentially Hand Waves the many historical liberties taken in the story with his opening narration:
    "Historians will say I am a liar, but history is written by those who've hanged heroes."
  • You Remind Me of X: Version 3. Wallace tells Isabella he was secretly married to Murron. "I don't know why I tell you now except I see her strength in you."


Braveheart- Primae Nocta

Edward I (Longshanks) of England announces a new policy to rid Scotland of Scots.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / DroitDuSeigneur

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