Braveheart

New this month Factual error: For much of ‘Braveheart' Robert the Bruce is torn between the choice of following his conscience by helping William Wallace or submitting to the English as a puppet ruler of Scotland. Thus he serves with the English army at the Battle of Falkirk, but helps Wallace to safety after the Scots are defeated. At the end of the film he is about to finally submit, when he has a change of heart, calls his followers to fight, and defeats the English. This is nonsense. Robert the Bruce was among the first Scottish noblemen to resist English control of Scotland. Edward I's Scottish wars lasted for more than ten years, and, at times, when it seemed that Edward had crushed all opposition, Robert the Bruce (like most Scots) made a half-hearted submission, but he soon took up arms again. There is no record that he was at the Battle of Falkirk (on either side). In 1306, seven months after Wallace's execution, he had himself crowned King of Scotland, provocatively rejecting English authority. For the rest of his life he waged uncompromising war against the English, culminating in his great victory at Bannockburn.

Add time

Rob Halliday
Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

New this week Suggested correction: This movie is historical fiction, real life events dramatized for a better film. That it's not completely historically accurate is not a mistake.

Greg Dwyer

New this month Factual error: Some more errors about Princess Isabella: at the height of William Wallaces' rebellion Edward I sends her as an ambassador to negotiate with Wallace (and spy on the Scots) instead she falls in love with Wallace. Princess Isabella was born in 1292: Wallace's rebellion was at its height during 1297-8, so she could have been no more than 6 at the time. (Somebody else has already observed that she was only 13 at the time of Wallace's execution.) Isabella's first language would (obviously) have been French, a 13th century Scotsman would speak either a heavily accented Scottish version of English, or Scots Gaelic, but Isabella has no communication difficulties in Scotland. The Wallace-Isabella affair is also absurd, since it is implausible that, at the height of a war, an unaccompanied young woman, let alone a princess engaged to the heir to the throne of England, would be sent into the heart of a war zone as an envoy and a spy.

Add time

Rob Halliday
Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

New this month Suggested correction: Her age has already been marked as an error. As someone well traveled, Wallace knew several languages and as an educated princess, Isabella would have likely known several (and this could all simply be a translation convention). And the king admits that he knew of the danger, and hoped that if Wallace or his men killed her, her father the King of France would help him defeat the Scottish rebellion.

Greg Dwyer

I concede most of your points, and, as you observe, if Isabella and Wallace can converse, this is 'translation convention'. Another error in the film that has already been marked: while the historical Wallace was a minor nobleman, Braveheart shows him as a common man, with no aristocratic or upper class traits, so the Isabella-Wallace romance forms a stock element of many romantic stories, a princess or prince defying social convention to fall in love with a lower class man or woman, entertaining as a story, but implausible in reality. And I think we agree that Isabella was only 6 at the time of Wallace's rebellion, so, in reality, she would have been far too young to have been involved in events.

Rob Halliday

First, both historical inaccuracies and things that you consider unlikely are not mistakes. Second, history is riddled with accounts of nobles having affairs with commoners and slaves.

Greg Dwyer

Continuity mistake: In a major fight scene two soldiers on opposite sides are jumping and spinning and tapping each other on the head with their swords.

Add time

Continuity mistake: In another major battle scene William Wallace is running into battle with a bloody claymore in his hand. In the next shot of him it is back in its sheath. Then in another scene he has it in his grasp again, but this time it is clean.

Add time

Visible crew/equipment: At the funeral of William Wallace's wife, Murron, a white van can be seen. He bends down to kiss her and as he stands back up, if you look over his left shoulder through the trees you can see the van going past. It's very quick, small, and blurred, but it's there.

00:54:25

Continuity mistake: In one of the major battles, Wallace is charging down a hill with a large sword in his hand. During the charging it changes to being a small pick axe type tool. Then around the middle of the charge there is a quick shot change and almost from the same angle the pick axe has disappeared. It then changes back to a large sword, a quick change back to the pick axe, then back to the large sword.

01:28:20

Braveheart mistake picture

Continuity mistake: At the end when Wallace is being led to be executed, he is pelted with food. Much of it sticks to his face and hair. A few moments later when they are standing him up he is completely clean.

02:37:50

Revealing mistake: At the end, Wallace's friend is charging in slow motion, and if you look closely you will see his battle axe flopping around like it's made of rubber.

02:49:50

Revealing mistake: After Wallace kills the Scottish noble in bed, he jumps out of the castle window into a river on a horse. As he is falling, you can see that the horse is a model and when they fall into the water one can see the fake horse bobbing around.

02:15:45

Continuity mistake: In the first large battle with England at Falkirk the same scenes are used when the English fire the arrows. The first time the arrows are fired, a blonde young man is hit in the foot, they then moon the English so they fire again and the same man is seen getting hit in the same foot. A man in the same battle is shot in the hip - when he grabs the wound you can see the shape of the cushioned bulb that the arrow is attached to. If you watch during all the battle scenes you can detect men who are supposed to be on opposite sides standing and talking, also you can see the choreographed moves being played out in almost slow motion - their swords aren't even striking.

Add time

Other mistake: When Robert the Bruce returns to the battlefield at Falkirk, there are 2 children supposedly crying over a loved one. If you look at the blonde girl she is actually laughing.

02:12:00

Continuity mistake: At Stirling an English archer is hit by the nobles on horseback causing his helmet to fall off. He's then hit again and somehow his helmet falls off again. Then when he lands he is still wearing his helmet despite it having fallen off (twice).

Add time

Braveheart mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Wallace first meets Princess Isabelle and is left alone with her in the tent, the wimple she is wearing appears to have a life of its own - first it's on her chin, then over her chin, and then under her chin.

01:47:10

Revealing mistake: When Wallace walks up to the man who killed Murron and faces him. Look at the man behind Wallace and the man. You can actually see a car passing behind his head in the distance.

00:50:20

Mortug Premium member
Braveheart mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When the English spy tries to kill Wallace, and you realize the crazy Irishman is a friend, you see the spy drop his sword, as soon as he is hit by the Irishman's weapon, but as soon as he hits the ground dead, the sword is back in his hand.

01:08:30

Braveheart mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When Wallace tries to escape from the English with his wife, not knowing that she has been captured and executed, he is seen running through the woods screaming her name... As he's running he has a sword in his right hand. During the course of three or four camera shots, the sword he is holding magically disappears and reappears as different cameras shoot him. Then it reappears and he digs it into the ground as he takes off the English soldier's uniform that he stole.

00:42:35

Revealing mistake: In the scene where Wallace takes over the town after his wife is killed, watch as one of the English archers gets thrown off the scaffold and you can see him fall into a large pad.

Add time

BillyBlake

Visible crew/equipment: In the execution scene at the end, right as Wallace is being quartered, you can clearly see (on widescreen) a plastic spray bottle on the upper left part of the screen, presumably filled with fake blood.

Add time

Revealing mistake: When the scarlet chevron is charging towards Wallace and his horse is struck down, watch Wallace's sword, it never comes close to hitting the horse.

01:31:10

BillyBlake

Continuity mistake: In the scene where the English spy is killed by the crazy Irishmen, the sword handle changes from being horizontal to vertical in consecutive shots.

Add time

BillyBlake

Join the mailing list

Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.