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HIGHLANDERS
a resource for Scottish Movies

 

Scottish movies, you gotta love 'em!  Especially the kilts swirling, swords swinging, blood 'n' guts ones, what more could you want?

Here's a few movies to view for the above, along with a few other decent Scottish movies that you may enjoy.

Braveheart (1995)
A passionate and bloody account of William Wallace’s rebellion against the English with Mel Gibson as a Mad Mac set to right wrongs and bring freedom to the oppressed. Patrick McGoohan makes a wonderful villain out of Edward 1st with Sophie Marceau and Catherine McCormack as the women in Wallace’s heart. Epic battle scenes of the highest order

Rob Roy (1996)
A stirring historical drama from a sharp script by Alan Sharp, and robustly directed by Michael Caton-Jones in which Liam Neeson’s kilted warrior finds himself locked in enmity with John Hurt’s Montrose. Best of all is Tim Roth’s foppish yet dastardly Cunningham and Jessica Lange’s sensuous Mary in a film that has the sweeping feel of a Western and was unjustly dwarfed by Braveheart.

 

 

The Wicker Man (1973)
Christopher Lee claims he gives his best performance in a film whose cult status soars with every showing. Lee heads a pagan cult on a Scottish island community, leading to a heady examination of Christianity and devil worship. Chilling, bizarre... and erotic.

Highlander (1986)
Highlander is a fun, well-written and well-acted movie, that gave audiences an interesting mix of the present-day, with flashbacks of the old highlands of Scotland, and the harsh life that was endured in that time. Highlander though not too well received by critics, it managed to find a cult following that has grown immensely over the years.

Trainspotting (1995)
Irvine Welsh’s interior monologue is transformed into an exhilarating exposé of aimless lives fuelled, and made bearable, by drugs. Launched a raft of the Mac pack: Ewan McGregor, Robert Carlyle, Ewen Bremner et al.

Gregory's Girl (1981)
Quite simply, one of the best Scottish movies ever made, in fact one of the best movies, period. I watch it about three times a year and never tire of it. A film that is up there with the classic Ealing comedies and has every right to be classed alongside the best. John Gordon Sinclair exudes a gawky, gangling charm as the lovesick Gregory and the rest of the cast are perfect.  Jake D'Arcy is wonderful as Phil Menzies, the ambitious sports master, the brilliant Chick Murray is the pompous head teacher, Dee Hepburn is Dorothy, the confident, dedicated new member of the soccer team, Gregory is besotted with her. Clare Grogan of Altered Images is Susan, who along with Carol and Margo conspires to make it an evening that Gregory will never forget. Who's going to be Gregory's Girl? Is it any of them, or is it his kid sister Madeline, 10-going-on-20 years old and his mentor. Special mention goes to Rob Buchanan and Graham Thompson as Gregory's mates Andy and Charlie, who feel that life is passing them by and resolve to get girlfriends. Charlie only has one line, right at the end of the film, but it remains my fave line. If you haven't seen Gregory's Girl, quite simply, you are inadequate!

Whiskey Galore (1949)
Delightful post-war British comedy illustrating for the umpteenth time the fighting spirit of the "ordinary Joe" (or in this case Jock) when set against the pomposity of the would-be ruling classes. Capt Waggett (Basil Radford) is the real star here as the middle class representative of stiff upper lippery. Surely Jimmy Perry and David Croft must have drawn on him when they were dreaming up the Capt Mainwaring character for the long-running BBC TV sit-com "Dad's Army". Even one of Waggett's lines ("I was waiting to see when you'd spot that", a comment usually made when Mainwaring had just uttered some piece of logistical nonsense) made an appearance. Un-missable example of British comedy rooted in the style that made Ealing so successful.

Send your thoughts and reviews on these movies, or on any others you think are worth including.

Also any thoughts and ideas on expanding this site, comments most welcome.

macbart@thetartanfern.co.nz