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The Battle of Culloden (1964)
"Culloden" (original title)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama, History, War  |  24 May 1968 (USA)
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 869 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 16 critic

A reconstruction of the Battle of Culloden, the last battle to take place on British soil, as if modern TV cameras were present.

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Title: The Battle of Culloden (TV Movie 1964)

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Cast

Uncredited cast:
Tony Cosgrove ...
Lieutenant Ward / Field Interviewer (uncredited)
Olivier Espitalier-Noel ...
Don Fairservice ...
English Officer (uncredited)
George McBean ...
Alexander McDonald (uncredited)
Robert Oates ...
Private Alexander Laing (uncredited)
Patrick Watkins ...
Crying Baby (uncredited)
Peter Watkins ...
Field Interviewer (uncredited)
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Storyline

A reconstruction of the Battle of Culloden, the last battle to take place on British soil, as if modern TV cameras were present.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | War

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Release Date:

24 May 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Battle of Culloden  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Narrator: [introducing the Jacobite military command] Sir Thomas Sheridan, Jacobite military secretary. Suffering advanced debility and loss of memory. Former military engagement, 56 years ago. Sir John MacDonald, Jacobite captain of cavalry. Aged, frequently intoxicated, described as 'a man of the most limited capacities.' John William O'Sullivan, Jacobite quartermaster general. Described as 'an Irishman whose vanity is superseded only by his lack of wisdom.' Prince Charles Edward Stuart, Jacobite ...
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Connections

Featured in Ex-S: Culloden: Making Reel History (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

My Bonnie Moorhen
(trad.)
Sung by Colin Cater
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User Reviews

Incredible
23 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is one of the films (even though shown on TV, it absolutely qualifies as cinema) that shaped my childhood, my politics, and my love of film-making and its true potential. I remember being simply blown away, not merely by the intensity of the violence and aggression (I had never seen war filmed like this), but by the passion and the pain of the "ordinary people" - the Scots, especially the Scottish women - as they witnessed the English brutality around them. Totally extraordinary to me also, was the fact that the camera team felt so moved as to intercede in the violence - not merely breaking the boundaries of media "objectivity" in a way that had rarely, if ever, been done before in 1964, but also breaking the boundaries of time - remember, we are in a war here that is taking place in 1746, and yet it seems perfectly natural and believable to have a camera team pushing into frame, protesting the behavior of the English troops.

Peter Watkins went on to make many groundbreaking movies, but little can touch Culloden - the closest is Punishment Park, which uses much the same techniques to follow a group of students and protesters in a slightly fictionalized and rather fascist USA, where (as I recall - I haven't seen the movie in years), they are given a "choice" between internment or a (loaded) chance to "run", with the risk/likelihood of being shot and killed by their paramilitary pursuers.

A minor personal note: I saw Culloden on TV while I was very young and at school in Britain. It is a hard film to find - at least until the recent DVD - but I came across it again at the Sydney Public Library, of all places, during a trip to Australia in the 1990s, and sat watching it on 16mm, on a Moviola in the library - as stunned and moved as I had been the first time I saw it. It was reassuring to know that its power had not diminished.


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