People around the world have a fascination for Scotland. The lush landscape, the kilts, the tartans, and the area’s history all draw people in and make them want to learn more. Immigration to the UK or away has given millions of people from throughout the world family ties to Scotland but even people with no tangible connection there still understand the appeal. This has helped to make Scotland one of the world’s most popular travel destinations, year after year. If you can’t make the trip to Scotland right now, or simply want more ways to experience it, check out these movies that feature great images of Scotland.
No list of movies filmed in Scotland would be complete without Braveheart. This 1995 film is probably the one that comes to mind first when people bring up the subject of movies and Scotland. Starring Mel Gibson, this movie tells the somewhat fictionized story of William Wallace who led the Scots during the First War of Scottish Independence in the 13-century.
The movie was loosely based on a 15-century poem by Blind Harry and it is set in Scotland during the rule of England’s King Edward I. Much of the film was actually shot in Ireland but there is plenty of Scottish scenery to enjoy. The scenes filmed in Scotland were centred around Glencoe, Loch Leven, and in the Mamores mountains near Fort William.
Another film that captures the wonder of Scottish scenery and the area’s history is Rob Roy. This 1995 film starred Liam Neeson and it was filmed entirely in Scotland. This story of Rob Roy MacGregor is based on a Walter Scott novel. Rob Roy is an 18-century clan chief who tries to get revenge on a highland nobleman who has done him wrong.
There is plenty of lovely scenery to enjoy in this film – including Liam Neeson. Filming locations included Glen Nevis, Gen Coe, Glen Tarbet, and Megginch Castle.
This 1986 film and the following sequels and television series had significant impact in spreading interest in Scotland. This first film was set in Scotland and New York City. It is the story of a 16-century highlander who is immortal and goes on to live in the US. Much of the film is set in Scotland recounting his early days. The film is an interesting mix of flashbacks to gorgeous highland settings and battles which then contrast against the 1980s settings.
The soundtrack by Queen stands out as do the scenes filmed in Scotland’s moors, mountains, and lochs. Christopher Lambert stars as Connor Macleod in this story following his journeys from his birth in a 16-century Highland Scottish village to his battles against another immortal in New York City.
This 2012 animated film by Disney Pixar may seem like a surprising choice but it has been hailed for its outstanding depiction of the Scottish Highlands. Kelly MacDonald voiced the main character, Scottish princess Merida. This character was a welcome change from the traditional Disney princess who awaits her prince. The independent, athletic Merida captivated audiences and the film won Best Animated Film at the Academy Awards. Pixar animators visited Scotland prior to creating the film in order to gain inspiration and accuracy in their portrayal of the Scottish Highlands.