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Overall rating:


Reference number: 6382

Date: 1982

Director: d. Murray Grigor

Sponsor: Channel Four Television Ltd.

Producer: Barbara Grigor, Murray Grigor

Production company: Everallin Ltd.

Sound: sound

Original format: 16mm

Colour: col

Fiction: fiction

Running time: 95.00 mins

Description: A celebration, or perhaps a humorous and sarcastic look at the romantic fantasies about things Scottish that have been invented by novelists, poets and musicians over the years.

The Scotch Myths Archive was purchased by the National Museums of Scotland, Scottish Life Archive from the collection of material amassed by Murray and Barbara Grigor. Their collection was used in the acclaimed Scotch Myths: An Exploration of Scotchness, staged in Edinburgh and St Andrews in 1981. The aim of the Exhibition was to show how images of Scotland were used in a variety of media and how their use affected the way Scotland was viewed at home and abroad. They were particularly interested in how the homespun, tartan view that many people have of Scotland came into being and how it was and still is being fostered today. [Information on SCRAN website. See also NMS and SCRAN for examples from this Archive]

Credits: w. Murray Grigor

John Bett James MacPherson, Ossian, Sir Walter Scott, Lord Byron, William McGonagall
Juliet Cadzow Malvina Farquharson-Smith, Miss Moffat 1750, Bonnie Jean
Walter Carr Sir Johnny Stalker, Laird of Dundreich
Samuel Fuller as himself
Ron Geesin Bonnie Highland Laddie, Bonnie Prince Charlie, as Liberace
Sorel Johnson Queen Victoria, Mary Rose
Chic Murray Cir Rhosis Hue McRose of Glenliver, Kilt
Alex Norton An antiquarian, James Boswell, Robert Burns, Napoleon, Felix Mendelssohn, Prince Albert, John Brown
Bill Paterson Another antiquarian, Dr. Samuel Johnson, Sir Harry Lauder

Lochs n Brochs Cruises
Courier Freddie Boardley; Driver Robbie Coltrane

Ladies eating shortbread Sadie Aitken, Ida Schuster
Caribbean Highland Chief Harry Agyako
Elmer MacPherson-Schmidt Brian Pettifer

ASS ad-men
Dominic Tyler David Rintoul
Archie MacPhee Finlay Welsh

Pipe major Roddie Dhu A.S. Ross
Japanese tourist Derek Tang
DunDreich singers Linda Ormiston, Clifford Hughes, Donald Maxwell

Music and songs Ron Geesin
Lyrics Murray Grigor
Animation Donald Holwill
assistants Colin Nawrot, Sam Smith
Rostrum camera Orchid Films
ph. Mark Littlewood
camera operator Jan Pester
assistants Norrie Halley, Darryl Collins
add. ph. Michael Coulter
assistant Gary Turnbull
Key grip Allan Ross
Lighting gaffer Bill Watkins
Best Boy Turlough MacDaid
sd. mixer Ian Leslie
assistant Iain Lewicki
dubbing mixer Andy Nelson
p. man. Penny Thomson
p. ass. Alison Campbell
ass. d. Bill Borrows
unit runner Eric Coulter
costumes Nadia Arthur
ass. Christine Scott, Alison Steele
make-up Sallie Adams
designer Jack Notman
DunDreich tableaux Peter Rush
set construction Allan Ross
water piano Byll Elliot
prop master Ross Balfour
ass. David Balfour, Francis Watkins
ed. Patrick Higson
ass. David Dicker, Craig Dunain

The producers would like to thank Jennifer Wilson and Alex McHardy, Crawford Arts Centre, St. Andrews, where Scotch Myths first appeared as an exhibition

Patrick Sandford, Perth Theatre where Murray Grigor's play BREEKSADOON was first performed

Micheil MacDonald, Museum of Scottish Tartans, Comrie, where Scotland's real history lies

produced by Barbara Grigor and Murray Grigor
Everallin Ltd. for Channel Four Channel Four Television Ltd. MCMLXXXII 1982

Shotlist: Reel 1
[no title] 'Rennies of Dunfermline bus travelling along country road 'Lochs & Brochs Cruises' (0.54) [Robbie Coltrane, bus driver] driver speaks to passenger 'we're up to our eyes in MAMBA Country - Miles and Miles of Bugger All!', a passenger drops a bunch of leaflets 'Bannockburn' etc (1.18) tour guide introduces passengers to the historic landscape, in reality a truck full of sheep, rubbish strew fields in the rain (2.41) The 'Dun Dreich Experience' bus pulls up outside castle. Laird invites them in, complete with bagpipe accompaniment (the player is slipped a sly £5) (3.36) animated tartan title sequence (4.56) American film director wanders in field, wonders where he and his companion are - they seem to have gone 'clean off the map'... (6.22) gvs at Castle Dundreich, the lady introduces Japanese tourists to castle ramparts, the Laird setting up sign at castle entrance - they seem to have more visitors than they can handle (8.16) Laird and his wife take tourists on their 'Great Plague' exhibition (10.23) bus arrives full of passengers awaiting the 'Dundreich Indoor Highland Games' (11.04) gvs around the show stalls, many money making schemes in evidence (13.07) ints show, Robbie Coltrane (the bus driver) and his pal sit and drink whisky from teacups. The show commences with Chic Murray introducing the myth of whisky and Ossian (22.12) shot of man in white in (Fingals's) cave playing harp. Montage of stills and action depicting the myth and legend surrounding Ossian, the 'Gaelic Bard' and poetry (29.09) sequence depicting the 'New Enlightenment in Scotland's culture, dramatised sequences with Rev. James McPherson, James Boswell and Dr. Johnston (35.51) shot of the Rev. James Boswell's house in the 'new old style' and other ridiculous interpretations such as the Tartan Toga! (37.33) intermission in the show. Men share cans of Tartan Special and whisky. c/u cash register (39.32) Advertising men call on the Laird. 'Dundreich's bloody past.... it's all in the package!' Nessie Eggs are decided upon as the new unique selling proposition for Dun Dreich (44.11) two ladies chat over a cup of tea (46.30) Robert Burns is introduced to the audience "Freedom and Whisky gang thegither... Tak' aff yer Dram!" Various shots of Rabbie Burns branded whisky bottles. Animations of cliched Burns Suppers etc (48.31) Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott sing together - yet the words of the song are written by someone else (49.41) c/u selection of postcard landscapes (50.11) sequence showing Napoleon, Sir Walter Scott and Byron (53.35) 1929ft

Reel 2
[no title] Chic Murray dressed head to toe in tartan. He recounts the story that Scots regalia was to be 'rediscovered' by Scott. 'We'll tartan the kingdom!' (3.14) animated montage of tartans (5.27) gvs as play continues (8.21) animated drawings of tartan-dressed clan members visiting Edinburgh Castle(12.38) in the theatre in the Castle man plays piano, the composer Mendelssohn comes in, enraptured (13.53) sequence with Mendelssohn - exts (Fingal's) cave, piano playing on rocky shore, a bottle of 'Western Isles' whisky washes up on beach. Sequence featuring Queen Victoria and Prince Albert and their romantic notion of the Scottish Highlands, in particular, Balmoral. Animated sequence with the Dundee 'poet' McGonagall and John Brown, the Queen's ghillie (24.10) Bill Paterson's impression of Harry Lauder, intercut with animated diagrams, theatre audience in the Castle, and general kitsch 'Scottish' items (27.44) USA film director, Harry Lauder walking off into the distance, boasting that he 'made every damn person in the country kilt conscious'. He is met by the Lady and asked to come along to the Highland Games (30.23) shot of Scotland football supporter, gvs Dundreich Inner Highland Games, and the Rallying of the Clans (34.17) gvs play, someone dressed as a 'tartan' Klu Klux Klan member. A woman from Islington, sings country and western. Everyone dances along to 'Auld Lang Syne' (35.56) gvs drunken Laird, with Chic Murray behind bar, 'Wha's like us... damn few and they're a' deid' (36.49) exts Castle Dundreich. All the visitors arm in arm around the Castle. All the kitsch stalls tartan, gvs montage of tartan 'stuff', getting more and more ridiculous up until the end (40.33) ecs (41.26)

Reel 1
(53.35) 1928 ft

Reel 2
(41.26) 1492ft