Jeff's Reviews

Thoughts on every movie I've ever seen.

Gladiator (2000)

Directed by Ridley Scott

Starring Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Oliver Reed

Author

The story was pretty good, the final battle and selfless death being the most dramatic moment. Seemed like Messenger in many ways. A historical underdog takes on the world, lots of eerie, surreal nature shots (walking through the wheat field, in particular). You can tell that it drew from Ben-Hur quite a bit, too.

Crowe, a reluctant gladiator, is not nearly as intense or violent as he should have been in this role. Would have liked to see him go all-out. Joaquin delivers the best performance. Nielsen is damn sexy for an older woman.

The action could have been pretty good but, also like Messenger, was cheapened by fast, jagged jump-cuts, close-ups, and camera tricks. Lots of fuzzy CGI. And who piled up the sand for his dead head on the Colosseum floor?

Nice figurines in the Colosseum. A nod to Clash of the Titans?

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