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This is a study of the 1999 box-office hit, Gladiator, starring Russell Crowe. In this article, I will be looking at camera shots, soundtrack, special effects and other things, that enhance the viewing of the film, and increase its quality.

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Introduction

Dave Cavill Media Study - Gladiator This is a study of the 1999 box-office hit, Gladiator, starring Russell Crowe. In this article, I will be looking at camera shots, soundtrack, special effects and other things, that enhance the viewing of the film, and increase its quality. We watched the first forty minutes of the film, and were asked to analyse its media attributes. The film is set in the Caesar period, at the end of the reign of Marco Aurelius. The main opening scene is set in Germania, and it is the beginning of a battle, but the end of a war, between the Roman legion and some barbarians. The very first scene is not a reality shot, it's a "dream" shot. The scene itself is at Maximus' home, in his cornfield, walking along, while brushing his hand through the wheat. This scene shows that while Maximus is a great general and a noble leader, he really would like to go home, to see his wife and child. The camera angle used in the scene shows the view from Maximus' legs. Having shown this dream, the film quickly proceeds to the next scene, which starts off showing Maximus looking at a robin. This is good for the scene; it could be filmed showing Maximus' last look at peace before he goes into battle. ...read more.

Middle

The two sets of men charge towards each other, the Roman troops obviously showing more formation and discipline, whereas the German legion of warriors charge in a random fashion. The formation in the Roman army pays off, as when the men engage in combat, it is obvious that the Roman soldiers have the upper hand from the start. The camera shot changes between different personal battles, watching them closely, and the effects used while filming make it an incredibly realistic scene. As the battle becomes more intense, it focuses on Maximus and his cavalry. As Maximus and his cavalry become more involved in the action and as more and more casualties occur, the camera technique changes, and the slow, sympathetic music begins to play. Most of the battle sounds are cut out, with the occasional sound of swords clashing or men dying, but the music enhances the effect that this scene has on the viewer. The change in sound is not the only change at this point. The film is slowed down, and every motion made by the actors in shot, is shown in a way in which you can almost feel what he is doing. It shows great detail and again, enhances the effect on the viewer. ...read more.

Conclusion

Quintus, Maximus' close friend, is given the job of arresting him, and no matter how Maximus complains, Quintus cannot go against the new Emperors orders. The final scene of which I am studying is when Maximus is to be killed. As he gets on his knees, the man who is to kill him, a noble soldier's death with a sword, prepares to do his job. It is then that Maximus fights back. He manages to escape, and the camera again uses a variety of shots as he battles with his own soldiers and then rides away, riding back to his own home as fast as he can. The film also shows shots of the pictures running through his mind, his family being killed by Roman soldiers, his little son being trampled by the cavalry of horses. He arrives back to his home after at least a day of solid riding, and he is distraught. He dismounts the horse he escaped on, stumbles over towards his house, and sees a horrific sight; his wife and son, hung from the porch. The camera is positioned behind the two hanging bodies, and shows the bottom half of these, and Maximus' face, as he collapses on the floor in exhaustion and sadness. This is only a study of the first forty minutes of Gladiator, yet there are a huge number of different camera angles and techniques. This continues throughout the film, and shows true directing quality by the films director. ...read more.

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