Analyze the historical accuracy (both at the time of conception and with our new-found knowledge, i.e. Marble thought to be white but now is known to be colorful). Additionally, point out the historical or mythological tales conveyed within the film. For example, Maximus being portray as a "general who became a slave who became a gladiator who defied an empire" is much like Spartacus in the Third Servile War in the first century B.C. He was a Thracian Auxiliary officer for the Romans who at one point apparently fell out from grace and was then enslaved to be trained as a gladiator in Capua. From there he led a group of other gladiators in rebellion which rocked the Roman world for a couple years. As for mythological tales, there could be a comparison the relationship and plot of Commodus and Maximus to Romulus and Remus’s conflict and founding of Rome.
This is a topic which has been written about quite a bit in the "outside" realm of the internet. I would love to see an Artifice article approach this topic differently. I like the focus on new-found knowledge. 2000 was a long time ago and there have been strides in Roman research since then which begs the question: Is Gladiator now dated? – Cmandra6 years ago
Gladiator movies like Spartacus and Gladiator are a lot of fun to watch, but how historically accurate are they? Do the films correctly depict the culture, technologies, and aesthetics of the ancient world? An analysis of one or more of these films would be interesting to read.
300 isn't about gladiators either. It's about the Battle of Thermopylae between the Greek Spartans and the Persians so there were no Romans or gladiators involved. The movie Spartacus would fit better instead with the gladiator theme because it's set in Rome about a gladiator slave. – dsoumilas6 years ago
I am wondering what you would refer to this genre of movies as? A google search revealed to me that all these films (300 and Troy included) were popularly lumped into the "gladiator epic" genre. Perhaps that is an issue that could be included in the article. – Marcie Waters6 years ago
I think this can also open a broader discussion about the way we approach classical history. Has it become too remote and therefore uninteresting so we have to spice it up? – DClarke6 years ago
What this topic is dealing with ("gladiator films") could lead into mentioning the sword-and-sandal genre of films from the mid-20th century. Those films were also period pieces set in ancient times (or Roman times in this case) whose main focus was likewise on battles, adventure, and entertainment value with historical accuracy not necessarily mattering as much as the former traits. – dsoumilas6 years ago