PRINT October 1995


the Highland Vogue

SCOTS WINCE AT the prospect of Hollywood descending on the Highlands. The cultural alarm system kicks in. Hope and reason flee in advance of bad tartanry, ultraphony accents, and gooey caricatures of Gaelcult, itself the longest-running caricature of national identity in a field of world-class competitors. So when we heard tales about the starring role of ethnicity-jokester Ted Danson in a film called Loch Ness, and about the umpteenth remake of Rob Roy, the “Highland rogue,” and when Mel Gibson described Braveheart’s 13th-century freedom-fighter William Wallace as “a really straight-ahead dude,” the cringe index shot up as swiftly as the Scottish Tourist Board got hard. As it happened, the latter two films allayed our worst fears, proving that the genre had at least moved into its Dances with Wolves phase, with more than the customary doff of Hollywood’s bonnet to local authenticity. The

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