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The Patriot

movie reviewmovie reviewvideo review out of 4 Movie Review: The Patriot

Starring: Mel Gibson, Heath Ledger
Director: Roland Emmerich
Rated: PG-13
RunTime: 164 Minutes
Release Date: June 2000
Genres: Action, Drama, War

*Also starring: Joely Richardson, Lisa Brenner, Donal Logue, Leon Rippy, Gregory Smith, Mika Boorem, Skye McCole Bartusiak, Adam Baldwin, Tom Wilkinson

Reviewer Roundup
1.  Susan Granger review follows movie reviewmovie reviewmovie reviewmovie review
2.  Dustin Putman read the review movie reviewvideo review
3.  Harvey Karten read the review ---
4.  Edward Johnson-Ott read the review movie reviewmovie review
5.  Steve Rhodes read the review movie reviewmovie reviewmovie review
6.  UK Critic read the review movie review
7.  Jerry Saravia read the review ---
8.  John Beachem read the review movie reviewmovie reviewvideo review

Review by Susan Granger
4 stars out of 4

Do you realize there's never been a big, blockbuster Revolutionary War movie - until now? "The Patriot" will change all that. In 1776 in South Carolina, Benjamin Martin (Mel Gibson), a former hero of the French and Indian War, is now a widower and devoted father of seven children. Rebuking those who advocate war against England's King George III over taxation, he's become a pacifist - until the battle literally lands in his backyard, as a cruel, arrogant British colonel (Jason Isaacs) deliberately murders an innocent child. Savage, bloody revenge quickly follows as Martin, wielding a Cherokee tomahawk, organizes the civilian militia. These excellent marksmen are guerrilla fighters, avoiding muzzle-to-muzzle confrontations with Redcoats in an open field. But Martin's not the real patriot - that honor goes to his idealistic son Gabriel (Heath Ledger), whose early enlistment in the Colonial Army is motivated by principle. Written by Robert Rodat ("Saving Private Ryan") and directed by Roland Emmerich ("Independence Day"), it's a challenging, exciting, character-driven story, capturing the human element that is too often lost in history - with heart-wrenching moments like melting a lead toy soldier into ammunition. As the tale's emotional pivot, the conflicted father and reluctant hero, Mel Gibson delivers a touching, tautly textured performance, ably supported by Heath Ledger, Jason Isaacs, Chris Cooper, Tcheky Karyo, Rene Aubjonois, Lisa Brenner and Tom Wilkinson. Caleb Deschanel's cinematography is magnificent, even when capturing the violence of war at its most brutal, and John Williams's score is superb. Sure, there are some cliches, but on the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "The Patriot" is a compelling, powerful 10. It's a stunning, sweeping, spectacular saga.

Copyright 2000 Susan Granger

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