The Patriot is a 2000 American epic historical fiction war film directed by Roland Emmerich, written by Robert Rodat, and starring Mel Gibson, Chris Cooper, Heath Ledger, and Jason Isaacs. The film mainly takes place in rural Berkeley County, South Carolina, and depicts the story of an American Colonist, nominally loyal to the British Crown, who is swept into the American Revolutionary War when his family is affected. Benjamin Martin is a composite figure who Rodat has stated is based on four factual figures from the American Revolutionary War: Andrew Pickens, Francis Marion, Daniel Morgan, and Thomas Sumter.
The film takes place during the events of the Southern theater of the American Revolutionary War. It attracted controversy over its fictional portrayal of historical British figures and atrocities, especially with the infamous “Burning church” scene, of which there is no historical or written record. Critic Roger Ebert wrote “None of it has much to do with the historical reality of the Revolutionary War”