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Gladiator (2000), (R)
CAP Score: 52
CAP Influence Density: 0.86
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NOTE: We make no scoring allowances for Hollywood's trumped-up "messages" to excuse, or its manufacturing of justification for aberrant behavior or imagery. This is NOT a movie review service. It is a movie analysis service to parents and grandparents to tell them the truth about movies using the Truth. If you do not want the plot, ending, or "secrets" of a movie spoiled for you, skip the Summary/Commentary. In any case, be sure to visit the Findings/Scoring section -- it is purely objectuve and is the heart of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie.
SUMMARY / COMMENTARY:
*Gladiator* (R) -- no lions and no Christians.
Though Maximus, the quintessential figure, believed in God and prayed to Him, that one believes in God does not make him a Christian. But we all know that. I guess director Ridley Scott did not know that. And I guess Scott did not know of the huge part of Christians in gladiatorial Rome.
The story opens in 180 A.D. with Maximus, the hero general of the Roman armies preparing for a battle with hulks in Germany. In a flaming arrow, spear-chucking, sword swinging melee, Maximus destroys the opposing army then pleads with Marcus, the Emperor to let him go home after the battle. Maximus wanted to return to his wife and son and his "humble" home. He was tired of war. But old and dying Marcus had other plans for Maximus. By historical account a political conflict was brewing or was in place in Rome of the time about progeny assuming rulership just because of lineage. So, in the movie Marcus apparently decided to take advantage of this political friction and appoint Maximus to be Emperor instead of Marcus' son, Commodus. Marcus' son had never displayed the four traits of leadership his father expected of him, but Maximus thoroughly possessed the four key traits Marcus was wanting in his successor. So, in a "The [unwilling] Prince and the Pauper" switch, Maximus will be the new Emperor ... and Commodus does not like that, so much so that Commodus kills his father [Isa. 33:15, 16], Marcus and lies that he died of old age [Ps. 5:9]. Now, Commodus is assured the throne since Maximus is now subordinate to and fully unprotected from Commodus, protection that was afforded by Marcus' admiration and trust for Maximus. Maximus, knowing that Commodus killed Marcus and by his [nonsexual] love for Marcus, devotes himself to deposing Commodus. So, Commodus disposes of Maximus into slavery as gladiatorial contestants. But Maximus does not stay there long.
Commodus is NOT the leader type. He is a portrayed as a selfish child, a pedophile and practitioner of incest, vain, an opportunist and is obsessively vengeful. While history's Commodus is reported to have practiced incest with his sister, some truths do not need to be exposed [Ps. 101:3 I] especially in the name of entertainment [Lev. 18:11]. Another possibly truthful presentation of this movie is that Commodus participated in the gladiatorial games as he did once in the movie. But in the movie before the one gladiatorial confrontation, Commodus stabbed his opponent in the back before meeting him on the game field to weaken him enough to be easily defeated (though it did not work). That is Commodus in *Gladiator*.
Though a series of war and gladiatorial battles and escape maneuvers, *Gladiator* presented floods of blood with incinerations, slicings, beheadings, stabbings, arrow and spear impalements, a hanging and incineration/crucifixion of a mother and her 8 year old son (partially seen). The name "breastplate" is given definition in one of the gladiator battles [Mark 7:21]. Considering the vast use of full-length skin-minimizing clothing in this movie, it is curious why one scene of brief but bold rear male nudity is presented [Exod. 20:26; Rev. 3:18]. Also of significant concern is the portrayal of lust for killing and the purchase of slaves to serve as victims of the gladiator games, Maximus being one of them, the laughing/cheering at murder, and the glorification of carnage [Nahum 3:1].
Please see the Findings/Scoring section below for a full accounting of this movie: for the best representation of the CAP Entertainment Media Analysis Model applied to this movie.
FINDINGS / SCORING:
NOTE: Multiple occurrences of each item described below may be likely.
Wanton Violence/Crime (W):
Offense to God (O)(2):