Search - Braveheart (Sapphire Series) [Blu-ray] on Blu-ray

Braveheart (Sapphire Series) [Blu-ray]
Sapphire Series
Actors: Mel Gibson, Sophie Marceau, Patrick McGoohan, Catherine McCormack
Director: Mel Gibson
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Military & War
R     2009     2hr 57min

Winner of five Academy Awards® including Best Picture, the exhilarating epic Braveheart is one of the most anticipated films on Blu-ray and continues to be beloved by fans and critics alike. The film will be presented in 1...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Mel Gibson, Sophie Marceau, Patrick McGoohan, Catherine McCormack
Director: Mel Gibson
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Mel Gibson, Drama, Military & War
Studio: Paramount
Format: Blu-ray - Color,Widescreen - Dubbed,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 09/01/2009
Original Release Date: 01/01/1995
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1995
Release Year: 2009
Run Time: 2hr 57min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaDVD Credits: 4
Total Copies: 2
Members Wishing: 0
Edition: Special Edition
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English, French, Spanish, French, Spanish
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
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Member Movie Reviews

Reviewed on 1/28/2021...
Winner of 5 Academy Awards including best picture and best director (Mel Gibson). Gibson was at his best directing and acting in this epic journey with lots of actors and actresses that you know. A must see!

Movie Reviews

Blood, bravery & idealism in an epic fist punch to your gut.
Themis-Athena | from somewhere between California and Germany | 01/25/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"On a whole number of levels, this movie shouldn't have worked for me. It takes considerable license with historical facts, not only in order to supplement details that are not part of William Wallace's legend but actually, wherever convenient. ("We stuck to history where we could but hyped it up where the legend let us," actor-director Mel Gibson admits on the DVD's commentary track.) It is graphically and unabashedly violent: from throat cuttings to battle scenes that have film blood literally splashing onto the camera, beheadings, a traitor's head smashed with a
wrecking ball, and fully 15 minutes of Wallace's "purification by pain," it shows some of the most brutal behavior conceivable. It also engages in some of the most blatant gay profiling in recent film history - not just in the drastic end administered on the lover of King Edward I. "Longshanks"'s son, but equally in the portrayal of both characters and their relationship as such. Last but not least, Mel Gibson plays a man at least 10 years younger than himself, a choice often enough bordering on the ridiculous. (Gibson insists it was the studio's wish that he not only produce and direct but also star in the title role.)

And yet ...

From the first notes of James Horner's hauntingly beautiful soundtrack and the first sweeping camera shots over the Scottish highlands, blending seamlessly into the pictures of the Scottish riders on their way to the alleged truce talks initiated by Longshanks, and the narrator's, Robert the Bruce's (Angus MacFadyen's) introduction - "I shall tell you about William Wallace: Historians from England will call me a liar, but history is written by those who have hanged heroes" - there is no mistaking that this is an epic story, taking up the tradition of the likes of "Spartacus" and "Ben Hur." Like those movies, "Braveheart" is a story of heroism and of having the courage of one's convictions; chronicling the life of its hero from first love to loss, betrayal, battles and final confrontation with his arch-enemy's powers. Like both of them, "Braveheart" won multiple Academy Awards, not least for John Toll's outstanding cinematography. Like "Ben Hur," it also won the coveted awards for "Best Picture" and for "Best Director." And maybe I'm just a sucker for that kind of epos ...

To my surprise, I found Mel Gibson to come across very believable as William Wallace; age difference, Scottish brogue and all. Both his acting and his direction are informed by a clear sense of vision for the movie and its title character. Moreover, although full writing credits went to would-be (?) Wallace descendant Randall W., many little details undeniably show Gibson's hand and mannerisms: to name just a few of the more obvious examples, Wallace's marriage proposal to Murron, his grinning greeting of a group of English soldiers trapped below a cliff, and his response to a doubting Scottish soldier's comment at Sterling that he can't really be Wallace because he's not tall enough.

In addition to John Toll's award winning cinematography, the movie benefits from first-rate production design (Tom Sanders), a score which perfectly captures the mood of every single scene, and a cast of outstanding actors; first and foremost Patrick McGoohan as Longshanks, who portrays the king's utter ruthlessness so convincingly that you completely forget his earlier incarnation as the 1960s' "Danger Man," and who delivers monologues and soliloquies worthy of a Shakespearean king. His musing "but whom shall I send" when plotting to send a messenger to Wallace with another insincere offer of truce, and his chilling announcement of the reinstitution the ius primae noctae because "the trouble with Scotland is that it is full of Scots ... If we can't get them out, we'll breed them out" could have been uttered verbatim by anyone of the Bard's most sinister kings. (Screenwriter Randall Wallace does indeed admit to Shakespeare's direct influence on the script, particularly on Wallace's "Sons of Scotland" speech before the battle of Sterling, which is strongly based on the monologues of King Henry V. at Agincourt).

Equally impressive is Ian Bannen in one of his last roles, starring as Robert the Bruce's leprosy-ridden father and evil spirit, whose first reaction to the tales about Wallace is to deride him ("He has courage; so does a dog"), and who expertly plays on his son's ambivalent feelings, until he finally drives Robert into hating his father for having coaxed him into his own game of scheming and betrayal - whereupon the elder Bruce drily comments: "At last you have learned what it means to hate. Now you are ready to be a king."

Then-newcomer Catherine McCormack stars as Wallace's childhood love Murron, whose scenes with Wallace provide for much-needed tenderness in the first hour of the movie - particularly touching is four year old Murron's gift of a thistle (Scotland's national flower) to orphaned William - and contrast sharply with the bloodshed that follows virtually incessantly from her death onwards. Sophie Marceau matures from teenage party queen ("La Boum") to French Princess Isabelle; Brendan Gleeson stars as Wallace's boyhood friend Hamish, David O'Hara as his heaven-conversing, self-appointed Irish guardian Stephen - one of the movie's most colorful characters - and Brian Cox brings all his extraordinary screen presence to his brief appearance as Wallace's uncle Argyle.

When I left the theater after having witnessed this movie's almost three hours of blood, gore and intense emotions for the first time, I felt as if somebody had given me a fist punch into my stomach. I was so struck that I was almost unable to speak, and dragged my moviegoing companion into the next bar, to revive my spirits with a glass of whiskey. (Scotch, of course). Having seen the film countless times since then, I no longer need that whiskey to overcome its drastic impact - but I still get gooseflesh during many of its key scenes and can't watch it without feeling emotionally drained at the end.

Also recommended:

William Wallace
Rob Roy
Spartacus - Criterion Collection
Ben-Hur (Four-Disc Collector's Edition)"
There are a few I think who missed the point.
Timothy Duncan | Illinois, United States | 07/26/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"In order to maintain the appearence of objectivity, I was going to rate this movie 4 stars. But I just couldn't. It really deserves 5, and it's going to get every one of them. This movie features some of the most stunning cinematography I've ever seen (scenes of particular brilliance include the deer-hunting scene and the slo-mo shots right before Gibson's first rebellion), impeccable acting (I don't know why the British have been hiding their actors from the American film industry - every one of the British/Scottish actors in the film was amazing, and Patrick McGoohan (sp) gave an incredible performance as Longshanks, not to mention newcomer Sophie Marceau), a magical musical score, and on and on and on and on. Physical elements alone qualify this work for the title of Best Picture.Yet, a number of people chastise Gibson and the movie for a number of reasons, primarily its departure from historical accuracy. I do believe these people have missed the point, for I do not believe it is fair to criticise a movie for failing to realize a goal for which it never really strived. I wonder: do these same people criticize Homer's "The Odyssey"? Do historical hardbodies cast aspersions at T.H. White's "Once and Future King" for taking historical liberties with "King" Arthur? (For that manner, any of the hundreds of contributions to the Arthurian legend). What about Robin Hood? Beowulf? Romance of the Three Kingdoms? Why is it copacetic for a book to create a myth around a cultural hero, but when it comes to film we must be expected to be as straightlaced about historical fact as an army bootcamp is about bedmaking and floor cleaning? I have read a lot of reviews below and a number of criticisers of the film's historical authenticity spit out the word "epic" as if it is a word that the American film industry has abused and transmogrified into a catchphrase for luring in gullible American movie-goers. But I argue that Braveheart, and the historical inaccuracies which it adopts (and it adopts many, which are nicely pointed out elsewhere), fit the same formula for "Epic Fiction" that we use to classify great (and I mean, universally accepted as great) epic works of fiction such as the Iliad, the Odyssey, etc. These works are not about who did what where and when and in what fashion. They are about the myth, the hero, and the way that they have influenced the ideals of the culture (italicize that). Was there really a Grendel, a Cyclops shepherd, a Wizard named Merlin, or Chinese war heroes who could single-handedly take on a small army? No. And yet, these works of fiction (and the mythological heroes that they have created) have had as much if not more of an impact on their respective cultures than any real life historical event. The impact of the epic is therefore not to be underestimated. Does the fact that Gibson portrayed the battle of Sterling Bridge without a Bridge really make that much of a differnce? The end outcome was the same, at least from an idealogical point of view. He rallied his men to victory with brilliant tactics against insurmountable odds. The presence or absence of a bridge, naked men, or twenty foot spears does not change that. The myth survives.Finally, regarding historical accuracy, there is the fact that although the movie does take a lot of liberties in order to portray a THEME - I am intelligent enough to suspend my disbelief during the movie. Furthermore, after the movie is over, (and this is a credit to the movie-maker) I was intrigued enough to go do some research on the subject from an objective historical source to find out what really happened. If a work of art (which is not, I remind you, required to be objective - artistic objectivity is almost an oxymoron and film should not be treated differently in this regard than any other form of art) instills in me a desire to learn more about a subject while at the same time portraying well the epic themes it sets out to portray, then in my book it was a successful venture and worthy of all the accolades it receives....Again, this is an epic, and just as a Greek epic might portray the Trojans as ruthless savages and their own members as heroic visionaries, I think it is acceptable for a Scottish epic to do the same to the British. And calling Gibson a homophobic is just ridiculous. Whether or not Edward II was really gay is not important. If he was, then BY THE STANDARDS OF THE DAY, he was an outcast, and would have been perceived, especially by his father, as weak, without potential, and unfit to rule. If he wasn't gay, but was just disinterested in ruling a kingdom (and history is filled to the brim with examples of less than sterling royal progeny), he would have again been seen (especially by his father) as weak, without potential and unfit to rule (because fathers - especially kings - have expectations of their sons), and questions about his sexuality would have naturally begun to arise among the nobility and commonfolk. What we as viewers of a historical or epic piece of artwork must do is refrain from judging said work by our standards. Today, homosexuality is (for the most part) accepted by society. Back then, it wasn't, and the mere rumor was enough to get you rejected from society (and vice-versa). Therefore, in light of the times in which the movie is set, the portrayal of the weak fop of a prince, EdwardII, as homosexual is both acceptable and indicative of the society that the movie was trying to portray. It wouldn't, for example, have made much sense to portray Edward I as gay. Not because a gay man couldn't be a successful King or military leader, but because a gay man would never have achieved respect as a monarch - THEN - by the people or his enemy.In closing, this is an excellent film that deserves its status as a best picture, despite (and perhaps because of) its historical inaccuracies. I encourage anyone with any interest in medieval history to view it, because it might just entice you to look into more historically accurate documents that, while not as entertaining as the movie iteself, will give you a more wholistic picture of what really happened."
Braveheart - Mel Gibson's crowning achievement!
K. Wyatt | St. Louis, MO United States | 01/18/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

""Braveheart" is quite simply, one of the best and most successful movies ever created and a huge part of that success comes from the efforts extended by Mel Gibson, as he wore three different hats for this masterpiece, those being producer, director and star. The one oddity about this movie for me was that I pretty much wore out my VHS copy of it and had, a couple years ago, purchased the DVD but only just recently took the opportunity to watch it again and no matter how many times you watch this movie, it is still a stunning, compelling and extraordinarily intriguing film that draws you in to the life of William Wallace despite already knowing how it's going to end.The one thing that drives this movie is the spirit that Mel Gibson puts into his character of William Wallace and it is of no surprise that "Braveheart" won five Academy Awards, including Best Picture of 1995 and Best Director for Mel Gibson. The only true surprise was that he wasn't among the top five nominated for or won the Best Actor award. High praise also goes to the long list of supporting actors and actresses that starred in this superb film! Most notable was the performance by Sophie Marceau, one of the most beautiful women on the planet. Patrick McGoohan was absolutely incredible in the role of the villain Longshanks, King Edward I, delivering a memorable performance.One of the most notable performances in this film, among the many, was the work done by James Horner who was responsible for the score. As is normally the case when his name appears in the credits, everything about the score, from the first reel to the last, is incredibly well blended into the movie and serves extremely well in enhancing the experience of the movie.The Premise:As the old saying goes, is it Hollywood or History? The truth is, of course it's a bit of history, put together Hollywood style to make one of the best films ever presented to an audience. The truth behind it is that we'll never know as recorded history from this era is circumspect as best. Where a huge portion of the credit for this film lays is in the hands of Randall Wallace, a descendant of William Wallace's.As this historic film opens, we see a young William Wallace in Scotland as he's learning the harsh lessons of life in his era. After his family is killed in battle he's fortunate enough to have his Uncle Argyle (played brilliantly by Brian Cox) take him under his wing! Several years later he returns home to find that his countrymen are still suffering under the yoke of English oppression but he didn't come home for that, he came home for Murron MacClannough (Catherine McCormack), seeking her hand in marriage. Unfortunate events unfold from there and William loses the love of his life and goes on a rampage not only to avenge his love but to free his country...What follows from there is not only one of the best films of the nineties but one of the best films of all times. I highly recommend "Braveheart" to any and all who are interested in seeing what true movie making is about! {ssintrepid}Special Features:-2 Theatrical Trailers
-Commentary by Director Mel Gibson
-A Filmmaker's Passion: The Making of Braveheart"