Ridley Scott – 2000
Ridley Scott‘s Gladiator is a frustrating historical epic. It has some great sequences and impressive effects but there’s quite a bit of inertia in the storytelling.
Russell Crowe delivers a muscular, career-making performance while Joaquin Phoenix gives a wonderfully squirmy turn as the villain of the piece. The cinematography in Gladiator has a lot of interesting textures which help illustrate Crowe’s journey from Germania to Rome to the afterlife.
Gladiator is good – but it could (and should) have been great.