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Gladiator (2000)

A former Roman General sets out to exact vengeance against the corrupt emperor who murdered his family and sent him into slavery. (R, 155 min.)


Monday, September 11, 2023

7:00 PM

This film is part of the Cinematic Storytelling series, courtesy of the Department of Communication, Media, Journalism and Film at Missouri State University. This academic series is open to the public and Free for Moxie members.
Series Lineup:
Sept. 11: Gladiator (2000)
Sept. 18: The Big Chill (1983)
Sept. 25: Mulholland Dr. (2001)

Synopsis: Before Maximus (Crowe), the heroic Roman General, can honor the wishes of his dying emperor Marcus Aurelius (Harris) by assuming the emperor's role, the emperor's cruel and corrupt son Commodus (Phoenix) orders the execution of Maximus and his family. Escaping death, Maximus assumes the life of an anonymous gladiator, fighting his way back to the Roman Colosseum where he seeks revenge and a return to justice for Rome. [Metacritic]

Starring: Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Djimon Hounsou, Oliver Reed, Richard Harris
Director: Ridley Scott
Genre(s): Action, Adventure, Drama, History

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"It's a stunning Roman triumph."

— Desmond Ryan, Philadelphia Inquirer

"This is filmmaking on a grand scale."

— James Berardinelli, ReelViews

"The movie's production values are peerless."

— Cody Clark, Mr. Showbiz

"A gloriously entertaining thrill-packer of truly epic proportions."

— Staff, Total Film

"An exhilarating, sweeping epic that begs to be seen on the largest possible screen."

— Jonathan Foreman, New York Post

"It is monumental movie-making: visually thrilling, technically astonishing, and emotionally engaging."

— Marc Lee, Daily Telegraph (UK)

"Gladiator delivers everything its title promises. The surprise is that this bold revival of the period 'sword-and-sandals' epic does so with solid acting, sure pacing and superior style interspersed with payoff-worthy pathos."

— Dean Lamanna, Fort Worth Star-Telegram/

"Filled with several superbly choreographed action sequences as well as some very modern musings about the workings of democracy, Gladiator Is a real crowd-pleaser -- colorful, beautifully paced, exciting, and effortlessly Big."

— Tom Ryan, The Age (Australia)

"The fusion of the ancient and the modern -- even to the point of some sly echoes of our own sports-mad society -- is seamless. Gladiator does indeed deliver the glory that was Rome, but it also clinically dissects the assumptions on which it was built."

— Desmond Ryan, Philadelphia Inquirer

"There's a thrilling sense of transcendence that won't let go from the first masterfully constructed frames in Ridley Scott's modern epic of ancient Rome. It's that very rare feeling that you're settling into a movie whose individual elements are so finely attuned they fuse into a singular construct of pure entertainment."

— Ted Fry,