Gladiator Analysis Essay

This darkness and a lack of detail in the long shots helps obscure shabby special effects (the Colosseum in Rome looks like a model from a computer game), and the characters bring no cheer: They're bitter, vengeful, depressed.By the end of this long film, I would have traded any given gladiatorial victory for just one shot of blue skies.Watching him in his snits, I recalled Peter Ustinov's great Nero in "Quo Vadis" (1951), collecting his tears for posterity in tiny crystal vials.

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The moral backbone of the story is easily mastered.

Commodus wants to be a dictator, but is opposed by the senate, led by Gracchus (Derek Jacobi).

It's only necessary to think back a few months, to Julie Taymor's "Titus," for a film set in ancient Rome that's immeasurably better to look at.

The visual accomplishment of "Titus" shames "Gladiator," and its story is a whole heck of a lot better than the "Gladiator" screenplay, even if Shakespeare didn't make his Titus the only undefeated champion in Roman history.

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Gladiator Analysis Essay Personal Statements For College Applications

You will receive a weekly newsletter full of movie-related tidbits, articles, trailers, even the occasional streamable movie.The senators want him to provide sewers for the city's Greek district, where the plague is raging, but Commodus decides instead on a season of games.Proximo arrives with his seasoned gladiators from Africa, who prove nearly invincible and threaten the emperor's popularity.This same story could have been rousing entertainment; I have just revisited the wonderful "Raiders of the Lost Ark," which is just as dimwitted but 12 times more fun. It employs depression as a substitute for personality, and believes that if the characters are bitter and morose enough, we won't notice how dull they are.Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix) is one of those spoiled, self-indulgent, petulant Roman emperors made famous in the age of great Roman epics, which ended with "Spartacus" (1960).Phoenix is passable as Commodus, but a quirkier actor could have had more fun in the role.Old pros Harris, Jacobi and Reed are reliable; Scott does some fancy editing and a little digital work to fill the gaps left when Reed died during the production."Gladiator" is being hailed by those with short memories as the equal of "Spartacus" and "Ben-Hur." This is more like "Spartacus Lite." Or dark.When Maximus wins his first big fight, it's up to Commodus to decide whether he will live or die. Luckily, no one else in the Colosseum knows this, either.Crowe is efficient as Maximus: bearded, taciturn, brooding. A foolish choice in art direction casts a pall over Ridley Scott's "Gladiator" that no swordplay can cut through. Its colors are mud tones at the drab end of the palette, and it seems to have been filmed on grim and overcast days. Proximo: That's enough for the provinces, but not for Rome.


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