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The Patriot (Movie Guide)

The Patriot is a 2000 American epic historical fiction war film.  The film mainly takes place in rural Berkeley County, South Carolina, and depicts the story of an American swept into the American Revolutionary War when his family is threatened. Benjamin Martin is a composite figure the scriptwriter claims is based on four factual figures from the American Revolutionary War: Andrew Pickens, Francis Marion, Daniel Morgan, and Thomas Sumter.

  1. The movie opens in the fields of Benjamin Martin’s farm – In which region of the country is the movie set?  How do you know this?
  2. Benjamin Martin argues against joining the militia with this quote, “Can American colonies govern themselves and should they?”  What would your answer to this question be if you were a colonist during the Revolution?
  3. Is there a difference between war & murder?  
  4. Benjamin Martin’s last quote, “my hope and prayer is that the sacrifices borne by so many…will spawn and fulfill the promise of our new nation.”  What does that mean?
  5. What does it mean to be a Patriot?  Why should we value those patriots/veterans who gave everything for us to have the life we have?

BONUS:  Who were the real people Benjamin Martin was based on?  
HINT: Try this website: The Patriot: Film Fact or Fiction