Gladiator charges into heart pounding battle.
Lisa Schwarzbaum - Entertainment Weekly
Gladiator suggests what would happen if someone made a movie of the imminent extreme-football league and shot it as if it were a Chanel commercial.
Elvis Mitchell - New York Times
Gladiator pours on the usual Caesar dressing.
Susan Wloszczyna - USA Today
Gladiator is one extended guilty pleasure.
Desson Thomson - Washington Post
With its conspicuous display of prefascist trappings, it says more about our time than about Rome.
Jay Carr - Boston Globe
Self-proclaimed 'world-creator' Scott only intermittently obliterates the turgid narrative and mediocre dialogue.
J. Hoberman - Village Voice
There's nary a dull moment in the film.
Louis B. Parks - Houston Chronicle
Gladiator is what championship is all about. Thrilling and exciting, it embraces technical standards of filmmaking rarely anticipated in earlier epics.
Philip Wuntch - Dallas Morning News
This film is the first 'sword-and-sandal' epic since the mid-1960s.
Steven Rosen - Denver Post
Without Russell Crowe's dynamism holding it all together, Gladiator might have devolved into a rash of overblown pandering.
Peter Rainer - New York Magazine
The film looks muddy, fuzzy and indistinct.
Roger Ebert - Chicago Sun-Times
The most visually spectacular of all Roman Empire epics.
Michael Wilmington - Chicago Tribune
Though the digital effects lack the weight and conviction of their equivalents in old Cecil B. De Mille movies, Ridley Scott's sword-and-sandal epic has some of the intensity of old Hollywood in terms of storytelling, spectacle, and violence.
Jonathan Rosenbaum - Chicago Reader
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
A visually astonishing picture that brings script, performance and, alas, displays of violence up to the modern standard.
Susan Stark - Detroit News
Ultimately, Gladiator is an honorable and inoffensive spectacle with nothing extraordinary to recommend it.
Andrew Sarris - New York Observer
A truly transporting trip back nearly 2,000 years.
Todd McCarthy - Variety
An exhilarating, sweeping epic that begs to be seen on the largest possible screen.
Jonathan Foreman - New York Post
Action-packed and passionate.
Jay Boyar - Orlando Sentinel
A smart movie and sumptuously executed.
Geoff Pevere - Toronto Star
This tale of power and revenge proves that there are still some people in the movie business who know what they're doing.
Ted Fry - Film.com
Gladiator doesn't have enough plot to be a Roman epic ... and too much plot to be a summer action movie.
Sean Means - Film.com
Gladiator derides 'entertainment' while hustling like crazy to provide two and a half hours' worth of same. The heroism and the tigers and the epic grandeur all leave behind the flavor of cynicism.
Robert Horton - Film.com
The Roman costume drama, all dressed to the IX's, has taken a long holiday from the big screen.
Rick Groen - Globe and Mail
Gladiator is a canned experience, a film that flails around awkwardly trying to find a reason to exist.
Andrew O'Hehir - Salon.com
Gladiator's combination of grim sanctimony and drenching, Dolby-ized dismemberings left me appalled.
David Edelstein - Slate
This is filmmaking on a grand scale.
James Berardinelli - ReelViews
Time for a little gladiatorial gore with your Milk Duds. Gladiator is here, and it's big, glorious and eminently dumb
David Germain - Associated Press
Gladiator is quite a good movie -- a big, fat, rousing, intelligent, daring, retro, many-adjective-requiring entertainment.
Richard Corliss - TIME Magazine
Gladiator is not as nimble outside the arena as inside.
Kenneth Turan - Los Angeles Times
This is visceral film-making at its finest, painted on the grandest of canvases, and yet, one which maintains the finest eye for detail.
Dean Essner - Total Film
While Crowe's acting is certainly more subtle than most of the brouhaha around him, he has little chance to display the affecting humanity that's one of his chief assets.
David Sterritt - Christian Science Monitor
In the end, Gladiator is overdrawn and too insubstantial for its own good, just like the old days, but it satisfies as entertainment on a grand scale.
Keith Phipps - AV Club
Really excellent but really violent Oscar winner.
Nell Minow - Common Sense Media
Russell Crowe is as believable a Spaniard here as Charlton Heston was a Mexican in "Touch of Evil." But director Ridley Scott took greater interest in entwining an empire's intrigue with its people's turmoil than emphasizing bread-and-circus brutality.
Nick Rogers - Suite101.com
...stirring action, good performances, and a plethora of visual delights.
John J. Puccio - DVDTown.com
John J. Puccio - Movie Metropolis
The brutality has such a mythical grandeur that it occasionally resembles beauty.
Josh Larsen - LarsenOnFilm
Beefcake! Blood! Body slams! Boring! Boring? Well, not quite, but at 150 minutes, "Gladiator" isn't entirely the thrilling, action-packed Roman epic some fans of the genre were expecting.
Christopher Smith - Bangor Daily News (Maine)
Epic cinema is back.
Urban Cinefile Critics - Urban Cinefile
Scott triumphantly transports us back to the Roman Empire circa 180 A.D. with a painter's eye for detail, a proven talent for manufacturing exotic realities (such as the future shock of Blade Runner) and a sweet tooth for utter spectacle.
Mark Halverson - Sacramento News & Review
Meaty and satisfying.
Daniel Etherington - Film4
If a gladiator film doesn't work as spectacle or as bloodthirsty action, what's left? Drama? It's dead on that level, too...
Rob Gonsalves - eFilmCritic.com
The film is good, at times grizzly, fun -- of epic proportions.
Joe Lozito - Big Picture Big Sound
A Roman version of Ben-Hur, Gladiator succeeds on only slightly more levels than it fails.
Wesley Lovell - Oscar Guy
Wesley Lovell - Cinema Sight
Notwithsdanding the blood, gore, and CG effects, this is an old-fashioned historical saga, a throwabck to the sand-and-sandals epics of Quo Vadis and Ben-Hur.
Emanuel Levy - EmanuelLevy.Com
The cast is strong (notably Nielsen as Commodus's vacillating sister, and the late Oliver Reed, unusually endearing as a gladiator owner), the pacing lively, and the sets, swordplay and Scud catapults impressive.
Geoff Andrew - Time Out
Gladiator is a movie that while watching, you can enjoy; for a while.
Scott Nash - Three Movie Buffs
There's careful thought evident in suggesting what can only be conjectured. If you're going to enjoy this entertainment, don't be overly preoccupied with historical accuracy.
Jules Brenner - Cinema Signals
It's an exciting yarn...and does not disappoint the action junkie. It's just not great.
Robin Clifford - Reeling Reviews
Listen to the audience as they leave the theatre. Are they talking about being moved by honor and justice, or going 'wow' at the bloodshed so spectacularly delivered?
Jeffrey Overstreet - Looking Closer
Scott...has delivered the first Roman Empire epic in more than 30 years and it's a doozy.
Judith Egerton - Courier-Journal (Louisville, KY)
[Crowe's] commanding performance not only towers over Ridley Scott's epic adventure, but elevates it to a higher plane.
Michael Dequina - TheMovieReport.com
If no one paid attention to Russell Crowe after his stellar performances in "The Insider" and "L.A. Confidential," they did so after he put on his Roman togs.
Michael Szymanski - Zap2it.com
...One of those technically superlative, appallingly expensive, loud, sweeping, 2 1/2-hour-long epics with lots of grit and bloodlust but very little soul.
John R. McEwen - Film Quips Online
Even when Gladiator turns nonsensical, and even when its effects shots aren't persuasive, it's hard to look away, and its 154 minutes flew by.
Nick Davis - Nick's Flick Picks
Crowe and Phoenix are brilliant, as usual. The rest of the almost completely British cast are excellent, particularly with dialog that could have easily come out stilted or ridiculous.
Ron Wells - Film Threat
Bloody sword-and-sandals epic is good, but not great.
James Rocchi - Netflix
Though heavy on the blood-letting, Gladiator serves as a smashing kick-start to what looks like an exciting summer for fans of high-powered action movies.
Margaret A. McGurk - Cincinnati Enquirer
Is this thrilling to anyone?
Jeffrey M. Anderson - Combustible Celluloid
Somehow perversely, you become like the bloodthirsty mobs watching the massacres, almost getting up in the theater to chant 'Maximus! MAXIMUS!!' along with the Romans.
Kevin N. Laforest - Montreal Film Journal
Scott's cinematic fiction captivated me as completely as its title character won the soul of Rome.
Betty Jo Tucker - ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Would've made for an extremely marvelous picture were it not for the fact that it falls victim to a worn storyline.
Jeffrey Chen - Window to the Movies
It is 1964's "The Fall of the Roman Empire" on both ends, with "Spartacus" in the middle.
Jeffrey Westhoff - Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)
Os inumeros equivocos historicos poderiam ser perdoados caso o filme de Ridley Scott conseguisse sobreviver ao menos como obra de ficcao. Nao consegue.
Pablo Villaca - Cinema em Cena
All the pieces are in place, but somehow they just don’t come together.
Steven D. Greydanus - Decent Films Guide
Too bad, then, that any episode of Smackdown! packs a bigger wallop.
Scott Heller - Boston Phoenix
Tremendous cast. Gigantic special effects. Epic story. Same ticket price.
Dean Essner - Hollywood.com
An effortlessly charismatic screen actor, Crowe brings shades of his other well-known roles to the part.
Leslie Felperin - Sight and Sound
For summer fare, it wasn't half bad.
Michael W. Phillips, Jr. - Goatdog's Movies
The political intrigue subplot feels tacked on and dull, the film is entirely too long for a simple revenge melodrama...and the structure mercilessly follows its predictable pattern...
Jeremiah Kipp - ToxicUniverse.com
One of those movies 'they don't make anymore,' Gladiator is a guts and glory epic with swords and sandals, spectacular action sequences, a seriously good hero and a cast of (digitally enhanced) thousands.
Rich Cline - Shadows on the Wall
One of the best blockbusters of the year and certainly a smarter and more intelligent action movie than most released during the silly Summer season.
Garth Franklin - Dark Horizons
So skillfully delivered is this sturm und drang... that the film's shortcomings are all but buried beneath the sheer awesome spectacle.
Rob Vaux - Flipside Movie Emporium
...a two-ring circus that fails as entertainment and stinks as a sermon.
Tom Block - culturevulture.net
Gladiator is a triumphant reinvention of the sword-and-sandal epic that fell out of favor decades ago.
Stephen Farber - Movieline
Thanks to a combination of real locations and convincing computer-generated effects, Scott can create sweeping vistas and that Cecil B. DeMille would envy.
Dan Lybarger - Lybarger Links
A beautiful but ultimately hollow affair.
Andrew Howe - eFilmCritic.com
Gladiator is an old-fashioned sword-and-sandal tale with graphic violence and a slick gloss of sentimentality. It almost works.
James Kendrick - Q Network Film Desk
Thank you, lord, for Russell Crowe.
Emily Blunt - Blunt Review
A grand spectacle of a movie wrapped around intimate human drama.
Robert Roten - Laramie Movie Scope
For all the added scale and detail ... Ridley Scott's movie lacks human warmth and spontaneity. Instead, Gladiator feels impersonal and overly programmed.
Dave Kehr - Citysearch
A historical fightfest spectacle in the great tradition of Spartacus and Hercules Against Rome.
Bob Thompson - Jam! Movies
"Gladiator" does best what it proposes - it be's big!
Ross Anthony - Hollywood Report Card
The movie's production values are peerless.
Cody Clark - Mr. Showbiz
Gladiator is a cheese-ball colossus.
David Elliott - San Diego Union-Tribune
It delivers a particular kind of visceral historical spectacle that movie audiences haven't seen in decades.
William Arnold - Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Had the filmmakers been daring enough to make the movie without its clunky dialogue or without digital filler, Gladiator could have been epic in more ways than its running time.
Lucas Hilderbrand - PopMatters
Robert Denerstein - Denver Rocky Mountain News
A smart blend of classic heroism and intelligent drama.
Wade Major - Boxoffice Magazine
A refreshing (and much-anticipated) return to the world of some of the most astounding warriors ever known.
David Keyes - Cinemaphile.org
There's something Jerry Springeresque about Gladiator.
Christopher Null - Filmcritic.com
Spectacle and human drama interweave beautifully in this epic recreation of the spirit of ancient Rome in all its pomp, splendor, and horror.
Cornell & Petricelli - CinemaSense.Com
A real winner.
Jon Popick - Planet Sick-Boy
This is a big, all-stops-out blockbuster and it delivers.
Eugene Novikov - Film Blather
Gladiator delivers the classic goods.
Bob Strauss - Los Angeles Daily News
A beautiful looking piece of work.
Erik Childress - eFilmCritic.com
There's little room for neutral territory with this one. You're either going to love or hate Gladiator.
Gary Brown - Houston Community Newspapers
Uncommonly rousing entertainment that works an audience without pandering.
Bryant Frazer - Bryant Frazer's Deep Focus
Scott shows that a strong Gladiator can still entertain the crowd.
Dean Essner - E! Online
From battling armies, to duels to the death, Gladiator is impressive (though bloody) to watch.
Madeleine Williams - Cinematter
Vibrant, visceral, provocative and transporting.
Jeanne Aufmuth - Palo Alto Weekly
If there's one film you can see on the silver screen this summer, this may just be the one.
Jim Judy - Screen It!
Gladiator has all the fixin's for wonderful drama.
Tim Bennett - CheckOut.com
Gladiator brings back the glory that was Rome.
Jack Garner - Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Grip your theater seats and prepare to be entertained.
Bob Bloom - rec.arts.movies.reviews
Ancient Rome looks as splendiferous as we all remembered from the dozens of toga-sandal-and-chariot epics that came in waves back in the late 1950s and early '60s.
Gene Seymour - Newsday
A future classic.
Kamal 'The Diva' Larsuel - 3BlackChicks Review
Gladiator is a flawed motion picture, and one that, for all its flashiness, comes off as a mild disappointment. It is still a good film, but only marginally so, and easily could have been a great one.
Dustin Putman - DustinPutman.com
What elevates Gladiator to the near-greatness it occasionally achieves is the performance of Russell Crowe as Maximus.
J. Rentilly - TNT's Rough Cut
It is undeniably a triumph, muscular and entertaining.
Terry Lawson - Detroit Free Press
Shawn Levy - Oregonian
Bruce Newman - San Jose Mercury News
Not only is it a highly entertaining and astounding achievement in modern filmmaking, but it also represents a career milestone for director Ridley Scott and star Russell Crowe.
Scott A. Mantz - Scott Mantz' Movie Reviews
A clever cast.
Karen Hershenson - Contra Costa Times
One to remember.
JoBlo - JoBlo's Movie Emporium
It plays out across a canvas that seeks to reinvent both a legend and a film genre.
Jay Stone - Ottawa Citizen
'Pollice sursum.' Thumbs up.
Harvey S. Karten - Compuserve
Highly visual entertainment with lots of blood and action.
Paul Clinton (CNN.com) - CNN.com
Huge in scope and endlessly exciting, Gladiator is the new word in blockbuster.
Ben Falk - BBC
Ridley Scott supplies bloodthirsty spectacle on an extraordinary scale in this muscular historical drama.
Maitland McDonagh - TV Guide's Movie Guide
In the glorious spectacle Gladiator, director Ridley Scott [re-creates] -- with a startling physicality and immediacy -- the Roman Empire that once blanketed most of Europe.
Serena Donadoni - Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
Gladiator is visually magnificent, absolutely stunning to look at -- and to listen to, with its haunting, stirring score.
MaryAnn Johanson - Flick Filosopher
After 35 years the Roman epic is revived -- and vigorously revitalised -- in this robust, viscerally charged drama.
Michael Dwyer - Irish Times
If Gladiator stops well short of being a classic, it nonetheless offers moments of spectacle that linger long past the movie's two-and-a-half-hour running time.
Ed Kelleher - Film Journal International
If spectacle, not plot, is your plate of pasta, you'll find Gladiator as much fun as a Roman holiday.
Eleanor Ringel Gillespie - Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Gladiator becomes a sterile deconstruction of bloodshed.
Robert W. Butler - Kansas City Star
Peter Hill - Popcorn
Una muestra mas de por que el cine es considerado como el Septimo Arte
Jorge Avila Andrade - Moviola
Savage, sweeping, spectacular.
Susan Granger - rec.arts.movies.reviews
While Gladiator is nothing if not stimulating and richly visual, director Ridley Scott's sense of grandeur is inconsistent, and he often over-reaches in his attempts to modernize the storytelling for MTV audiences.
Rob Blackwelder - SPLICEDWire
A joyous return of the cinematic epic.
Scott Weinberg - eFilmCritic.com
Ridley Scott's Gladiator is an interesting and attractive action movie, but not a very forceful one.
Ian Waldron-Mantgani - UK Critic
Like its hero, the film is solemnly pious; and though Christianity this time is noticeably missing from Hollywood's Rome, the sense of morality oppresses as never before.
Stuart Klawans - The Nation
A movie that revels in the primal thrill of swords tearing into flesh and blood spraying in huge, arterial gouts.
Rene Rodriguez - Miami Herald
Action movie fans will love Gladiator for its intensity. Those looking for something more intelligent will find moments of satisfaction here, but will wish it had more of a theme than 'revenge is sweet.'
Brian Webster - Apollo Guide
Gladiator isn't groundbreaking, but it's good old-fashioned entertainment.
Shay Casey - rec.arts.movies.reviews
This isn't a movie to challenge convention.
Lawrence Toppman - Charlotte Observer
Its depiction of the primal emotions that constitute our lives is positively enthralling.
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat - Spirituality and Practice
I shouldn't diminish Gladiator by tossing out so banal a word as 'entertaining' -- but it is. I shouldn't succumb to the temptation to describe it with ad-copy buzzwords like 'spectacular!' or 'dazzling!' or 'epic!' -- but it is.
Scott Renshaw - rec.arts.movies.reviews
Gladiator is an epic, primal panorama of good versus evil.
Mark Ramsey - MovieJuice!
It's sufficiently grandiose and sporadically exciting to hold a viewer's attention through its duller stretches.
Frank Swietek - One Guy's Opinion
At its best, Gladiator is one of the great films of all time.
Mac Verstandig - Moviereviews.org
It resurrects an exciting genre that has been dead since Kirk Douglas hung up his sandals.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) - St. Paul Pioneer Press
Gladiator is a foaming beast.
Wesley Morris - San Francisco Examiner
The film moves slowly and ambivalently.
J. Robert Parks - Phantom Tollbooth
As gory and gaudy escapism, it is impressive.
Duane Dudek - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
This is the kind of movie Braveheart will someday grow up to be and it should not be missed.
Widgett Walls - Needcoffee.com
From the spectacular opening battle scene ... to a final mano-a-mano showdown in the Coliseum, this film is at its best when it's at its bloodiest.
Todd Anthony - South Florida Sun-Sentinel
This Ridley Scott film, his best in years, re-envisions ancient Rome for the aughts and makes it safe to go back in the Colosseum.
Mick LaSalle - San Francisco Chronicle
With a few reservations for [Ridley] Scott's visual style this is pleasant return of a type of film we have not seen made since the '60s.
Mark R. Leeper - rec.arts.movies.reviews
The sheer dynamism of the action, coupled with Hans Zimmer's lavish score and the forcefield of Crowe, still makes this a fiercesome competitor in the summer movie stakes.
Ian Nathan - Empire Magazine
If this makes some money, it may be possible to explore wider stories and more complex themes, rather than the stubborn preservation of outdated societal models that a movie like this endorses.
Gregory Weinkauf - New Times
It may bear some flaws and familiar elements, but Gladiator's script is a great story well told, evading the cliches one might expect...and staying completely one-liner free.
Tor Thorsen - Reel.com
What could and should have been a great film turns out instead to be merely an adequate one. Only the film's look and Crowe's usually wonderful performance causes it to rise above the ordinary.
Steve Rhodes - Internet Reviews
Gladiator looms as an audacious, if not exactly great, movie.
Joe Baltake - Sacramento Bee
It's a violent, noisy, low-brow distraction.
Marty Mapes - Movie Habit
It's almost like [Scott]'s trying as hard as he can to make the worst movie of all time.
Chuck Rudolph - Matinee Magazine
Loud, obnoxious, and pleasant-enough entertainment, but hardly the soaring tale of one man's struggle that it was so clearly envisioned to be.
Marc Savlov - Austin Chronicle
Matt Easterbrook - Matt's Movie Reviews
Clever exploration of the notion of 'spectatorship.'
Yazmin Ghonaim - Cinephiles
Gladiator can aptly be called a typical summer movie, meaning it is mindless and designed for the lowest common denominator.
John A. Nesbit - Old School Reviews
If you like gory movies, this is the film for you.
Eric Lurio - Greenwich Village Gazette
The film is a reminder of the old Hollywood sword-and-sandal films of grandeur and muscle and frivolity.
Dennis Schwartz - Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ridley Scott may not have created the perfect epic, but he came awfully close.
Edward Johnson-Ott - NUVO Newsweekly
Great performances from Crowe and Phoenix.
Eric D. Snider - EricDSnider.com