Check out the biographies made in the 1930s to the 1950s. Hollywood highly fictionalized them to the point that there was very little fact in them.
The idea was to entertain and sell tickets.
I believe the start of the 1970s did see some actual research go into the accuracy of the movies, but some people did not like some of the truth,
especially when it came to historic Western figures.
If the movie is supposed to be about a person or their life, I would want it to be as factual as possible. However, if it is fiction that takes place
with historic persons of the past, the film makers can take liberties with them, as long as it is noted in the movie credits.
If the movie makes the attempt to claim that it is the "true" story than it should make every effort to do so, histoically speaking. One of the
issues that I have with historically based films is that there is always one side told disproportionately to the other/ good guy-bad guy type of
things. History itself is up for questioning in many cases, but when we've got the facts and it's a more recent story that can be verified, tell
the truth, imo. Adding characters or scenes that accentuate that story are ok, as long as the story's main points remain.
I think that is someone is making a movie the story itself could be fictionalized, but the event of the time should be historically accurate. An
example would be The Patriot with Mel Gibson. The story and some of the battle can be not real or truth stretched but keep the major battle and
historical issue correct. There should be some accountability for a degree of accuracy.
I have just seen the movie "The Illusionist" with Edward Norton. It is a work of fiction set in the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Crown Prince Leopold
was a real person, and he is a major character in the story. While it is a good movie, I do wonder how many people will think it is what really
happened, instead of the fiction that it is.
Mel Gibson and Braveheart. Some people were alive that weren't, the outfits they wore weren't around then, bleh. Perfect Storm? Uh, they got the
name of the boat right... 300? Well, they got the fact that there were Spartans right... I like how they did the Prestige, done in a certain time,
and show a rivalry between Edison and Telsa.
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