10 Hilariously Inaccurate Historical Epics

1) Braveheart

The sheer amount of staggering inaccuracies in this Mel Gibson-starring blockbuster mean that it fits more into the category of fantasy than historical drama. As endlessly quotable as Braveheart, it’s also pathetically inaccurate.

Where do we start? How about with Gibson’s William Wallace, who was not as much of a rags-to-riches story as the film would have you think. Born of the Scottish aristocracy, Wallace was actually a knight of honor, not a born-in-blood warrior.

For another point, that epic Battle of Stirling in Braveheart? Actually, that’s the Battle of Stirling Bridge, according to historians. Don’t remember a bridge in the movie? That’s because, for cinematic purposes, screenwriter Randall Wallace left it out. Hang in there, it gets worse.

The face paint? Wrong. The kilts? Wrong. The primae noctis law that allowed lords to rape the maiden daughters of their serf subjects? Totally wrong. There’s extremely little evidence to suggest that primae noctis was ever exercised at the time.

Isabella of France was around the age of four at the time of Wallace’s uprising, so her part in the film, and her torrid love affair with the man, is entirely fictitious. And as for the fate of Philip, the gay lover of King Edward I, Braveheart took liberties with that too. No one ever threw the guy out a window, so far as we know.