The Patriot



                    This is not for the independence of one or two colonies, but for the     

                          independence of one nation.


 It is the late 18th century, in South Carolina. Benjamin Martin is a veteran of the French and Indian wars and a widower raising seven of his children on his farm. Gabriel, the eldest, is anxious to join the American forces fighting the British in the Revolutionary War, without his father's permission. Martin, who knows from first-hand experience the horrifying carnage that war presents, is anxious to discourage his son from participating.

Against his father's wishes, Gabriel does join up only to return home after two years wounded as he is carrying dispatches between commanders. That night, a skirmish between the British and the patriots wakes the Martins and they give care to the wounded of both sides the next morning. British soldiers approach the house, proceed to kill the Colonial wounded, burn down the house and take Gabriel into custody as a spy, intending to hang him. Martin's second son Thomas, is killed trying to free Gabriel as he is taken prisoner, shot by the cold-hearted Col. William Tavington. This enrages Martin to free his son Gabriel, with the help of his two younger sons Nathan and Samuel, in brutal fashion Gabriel is freed, the sons are horrified. Gabriel re-joins the cause against his father's will again stating it is his duty as a soldier. Benjamin Martin decides to join the fight later when he catches up with his son and they report together.

Father and son come to the conclusion that the Colonials cannot hope to beat the British in set piece battles; the British are too well armed. It is obvious that the British forces were too well trained and far outnumbered the Colonial Army. Instead, They rally a militia, including French Officer Jean Villeneuve, from among the men of South Carolina and proceed to harry the British supply lines (including the capture of Lord Cornwallis' personal effects and prize hounds and the destruction of a supply ship in front of a ball at Middleton Place for the British officers). To combat the militia, Cornwallis authorizes Tavington to pursue more brutal tactics to draw Martin out. Tavington tracks Martin's family to their refuge with their aunt (Martin's sister in law, by his deceased wife) and burns down her plantation. However, the family escapes, and are led to a safe haven by Gabriel and Martin. During this time, Gabriel then marries Anne Howard, a wartime marriage during a furlogh. However, after the marriage, returning home, Anne, her father and her mother, along with all the townspeople are burned alive whilst locked in the church, at the orders of Tavington.

After a furious Gabriel discovers what has happened, he and a small group of men ride to engage the Dragoons, a small, elite force of British Soldiers. During the fight, many men on both sides are killed, leaving Gabriel and the Reverend to face off against Tavington. A few others escape with major wounds. The Reverend is shot, but throws his loaded musket to Gabriel, who shoots Tavington, who promtply falls to the ground. However, as Gabriel approaches Tavington's body, he quickly turns around and stabs him with his sword. As Tavington escapes, Benjamin approaches the scene in time to find Gabriel dying on the ground.

In the final battle, Col. Harry Burwell and Villeneuve help Benjamin defeat the British, by using the Milita (who are held in low regard by the British officers) as a feint. Tavington. As Tavington gains the upper hand in their vicious fight, and Benjamin is staring into the distance, Tavington mutters, "Kill me before the war is over, will you? It appears, you are not the better man..." As he swings his sword ready to kill Benjamin, Martin picks up a detached bayonet and replies, "You're right... my sons were better men!", and impales him in the throat.

Meanwhile, a disappointed General Cornwallis sounds the retreat as the rebels celebrate. As Martin narrates, we are told that the British were defeated when the French finally arrived to block the British off. The final scene features Martin and his family arriving at a site where the foundations of homes lie....





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Movie Script

Directed by Roland Emmerich
Produced by  
Written by Robert Rodat
Starring Mel Gibson
Heath Ledger
Joely Richardson
Jason Isaacs
Chris Cooper
Tom Wilkinson
Music by John Williams
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release date(s) June 28, 2000
Running time 158 min .
Language English
Budget $110,000,000








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