Studying Gladiator

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Gladiator was one of the great commercial successes of the early twenty-first century, a fascinating example of how an old genre can be resuscitated for a new generation. The film's story is not complex yet the ways in which it is told says much about mainstream narrative techniques. And beneath its action-packed scenes and richly detailed sets, Gladiator carries specific values and messages which deserve close scrutiny. In Studying Gladiator, Sandy Irvine considers: Film language -- how Gladiator overcomes incredulity with compelling use of sound, costume and mise-en-scene; The industrial context -- Gladiator as a product of a partnership between an infant studio (DreamWorks) and a transnational corporation (Universal); Genre and Narrative -- what do we mean by an 'epic', and can we describe Gladiator as such? Audience -- how did the makers of Gladiator 'win the crowd' and appeal to today's block-buster audience? Film-makers -- what did Ridley Scott personally bring to Gladiator, and can he be considered an auteur? Representation and Ideology -- can we relate historical representations to contemporary society?