Gladiator (2000) Movie Script

- Sir.
- General.
- General.
- Sir.
- General.
- Sir.
Lean and hungry.
- Still nothing?
- Not a sign.
- How long has he been gone?
- Nearly two hours.
- Will they fight, sir?
- We shall know soon enough.
Soldier, I ordered you
to move those catapults forward.
- They're out of range.
- Range is good.
- The danger to the cavalry-
- It is acceptable. Agreed?
They say no.
- Steady! Steady!
People should know
when they're conquered.
Would you, Quintus?
Would l?
Strength and honor.
- Strength and honor.
- Strength and honor.
At my signal,
unleash hell.
Load the catapults.
Infantry form up
for advance.
- Archers ready.
- Archers!
- Knock!
- Knock!
- Patres!
- Maximus!
Three weeks from now,
I will be harvesting my crops.
Imagine where you will be,
and it will be so.
Hold the line!
Stay with me!
If you find yourself alone,
riding in green fields
with the sun on your face,
do not be troubled.
For you are in Elysium,
and you're already dead!
what we do in life...
echoes in eternity.
- Pull!
Pull! Pull!
Catapults ready, sir!
Archers, ignite!
- Ignite!
- Ignite!
Archers, draw!
- Aah!
- Aah!
All right, men, ready!
Hold the line!
Draw! Loose!
Loose! Loose!
Hold the line!
Draw! Loose!
Stay with me!
Stay with me!
Roma Victor!
Roma Victor!
Do you think
he's really dying?
He's been dying
for ten years.
If he weren't really dying,
he wouldn't have sent for us.
Maybe he just
misses us.
And the senators?
He wouldn't have summoned them if-
Peace, Commodus.
After two weeks on the road, your
incessant scheming is hurting my head.
He's made
his decision.
He's going to announce it.
He will name me.
The first thing I shall do...
is honor him with games
worthy of His Majesty.
For now, the first thing
I shall do is have a bath.
- Your Highness?
We seem to be almost there, sir.
- Sire.
- Where's the Emperor?
He's at the front, sire.
They've been gone for 1 9 days.
The wounded are
still coming in.
My horse.
My lord.
You have proved
your valor...
yet again, Maximus.
Let us hope
for the last time.
There's no one
left to fight, sire.
Ah. There is always
someone left to fight.
How can I reward
Rome's greatest general?
Let me go home.
Ah. Home.
Whoa! Whoa!
They honor you, Caesar.
It's for you, Maximus.
They honor you.
Have I missed it?
Have I missed the battle?
You have
missed the war.
Father, congratulations.
I shall sacrifice a hundred bulls
to honor your triumph.
Save the bulls.
Honor Maximus.
He won the battle.
- General.
- Highness.
Rome salutes you,
and I embrace you as a brother.
It has been too long,
my old friend.
- Highness.
- Here, Father.
Take my arm.
I think it is time
for me to leave.
So much for
the glory of Rome.
Magnificent battle.
- General.
- Still alive?
-Still alive.
- The gods must have a sense of humor.
- The gods must love you.
- Valerius.
Back to barracks, General?
Or to Rome?
Home. My wife,
the son, the harvest.
Maximus the farmer.
I still have difficulty imagining that.
You know, dirt cleans off a lot
easier than blood, Quintus.
- Here he is.
- Highness.
Senator Gaius,
Senator Falco.
Beware of Gaius. He'll pour a honeyed
potion in your ear...
and you'll wake up one day,
and all you'll say is,
" Republic, republic, republic."
Well, why not?
Rome was founded as a republic.
Yes, and in a republic
the senate has the power.
But Senator Gaius isn't
influenced by that, of course.
Where do you stand, General?
Emperor or senate?
The soldier has the advantage
of being able to look
his enemy in the eye, Senator.
Well, with an army behind you,
you could be extremely political.
I warned you.
Now I shall save you. Senators.
I'm going to need
good men like you.
How may I be of service,
You're a man who knows
what it is to command.
You give your orders, the orders
are obeyed and the battle is won.
But these senators scheme
and squabble and flatter and deceive.
Maximus, we must save Rome
from the politicians, my friend.
Can I count on you...
when the time comes?
Highness, when your father releases me,
I intend to return home.
Well, no one's earned it more.
Don't get too comfortable.
I may call on you before long.
Lucilla's here.
Did you know?
She's not forgotten you.
And now you're
the great man.
If only you
had been born a man.
What a caesar
you would have made.
You would have
been strong.
I wonder,
would you have been just?
I would have been
what you taught me to be.
How was your journey?
Long. Uncomfortable.
Why have I come?
I need your help.
With your brother.
Of course.
He loves you.
He always has.
he will need you now
more than ever.
Enough of politics.
Let us pretend that you
are a loving daughter...
and I am a good father.
This is a pleasant fiction,
isn't it?
Good morning.
I need three more horses.
Two! Three!
One! Two!
You sent for me, Caesar?
Tell me again, Maximus.
Why are we here?
For the glory
of the Empire, sire.
Ah, yes.
Ah, yes, I remember.
Do you see that map,
That is the world
which I created.
I have conquered, spilt blood,
expanded the Empire.
Since I became caesar,
I've known four years without war.
Four years of peace in 20.
And for what?
I brought the sword.
Nothing more.
Caesar, your life-
Please don't call me that.
Come. Please.
Come sit.
Let us talk together now-
very simply-as men.
Maximus... talk.
Five thousand of my men
are out there in the freezing mud.
Three thousand of them
are bloodied and cleaved.
Two thousand will never
leave this place.
I will not believe that they
fought and died for nothing.
And what would you
believe, Maximus?
They fought for you...
and for Rome.
And what is Rome,
I've seen much of
the rest of the world.
It is brutal and cruel and dark.
Rome is the light.
Yet you have
never been there.
You have not seen
what it has become.
I am dying, Maximus.
When a man sees his end,
he wants to know there was
some purpose this life.
How will the world speak my name
in years to come?
Will I be known
as the philosopher?
The warrior?
The tyrant?
Or will I be the emperor who
gave Rome back her true self?
There was once a dream
that was Rome.
You could only
whisper it.
Anything more than a whisper
and it would vanish.
It was so fragile.
And I fear that it will not
survive the winter.
Let us whisper now,
together, you and l.
You have a son.
Tell me about your home.
My house is in the hills above Tiujillo.
A very simple place.
that warm in the sun.
A kitchen garden that
smells of herbs in the day,
jasmine in the evening.
Through the gate
is a giant poplar.
Figs, apples, pears.
The soil, Marcus-
- Black like my wife's hair.
Grapes on the south slopes,
olives on the north.
Wild ponies play near my house.
They tease my son.
- He wants to be one of them.
- Remember the last time you were home?
Two years, 264 days,
and this morning.
I envy you, Maximus.
It's a good home.
Worth fighting for.
There is one more duty...
that I ask of you
before you go home.
What would you
have me do, Caesar?
I want you to become
the protector of Rome after I die.
I will empower you
to one end alone.
To give power back
to the people of Rome...
and end the corruption
that has crippled it.
Will you accept this great honor
that I have offered you?
With all my heart, no.
that is why
it must be you.
But surely a prefect,
a senator,
somebody who knows the city,
who understands her politics.
But you have not been
corrupted by her politics.
- And Commodus?
- Commodus is not a moral man.
You have known that
since you were young.
Commodus cannot rule.
He must not rule.
You are the son
that I should have had.
Commodus will accept
my decision.
He knows that you command
the loyalty of the army.
I- I need
some time, sire.
By sunset,
I hope you will have agreed.
Now embrace me as my son.
And bring an old man
another blanket.
- My father favors you now.
- My lady.
It was not always so.
Many things change.
Many things.
Not everything.
Maximus, stop.
Let me see your face.
Hmm. You seem upset.
I lost many men.
What did my father
want with you?
To wish me well
before I leave for home.
You're lying.
I could always tell when you were lying
because you were never any good at it.
- I never acquired your comfort with it.
- True.
But then you never had to.
Life is more simple
for a soldier.
Or do you
think me heartless?
I think you have
a talent for survival.
Maximus, stop.
Is it really so terrible
seeing me again?
No. I'm tired
from battle.
It hurts you to see
my father so fragile.
Commodus expects that my father will
announce his succession within days.
Will you serve my brother
as you served his father?
I will always serve Rome.
Do you know,
I still remember you
in my prayers.
Oh, yes. I pray.
I was sad to hear
of your husband's death. I mourned him.
- Thank you.
- And I hear you have a son.
Yes. Lucius.
He'll be nearly
eight years old.
My son is also
nearly eight.
I thank you
for your prayers.
Ancestors, I ask for your guidance.
Blessed mother, come tome
with the gods' desire for my future.
Blessed father, watch over
my wife and son with a ready sword.
Whisper to them I live
only to hold them again.
Ancestors, I honor you...
and will try to live with
the dignity you have taught me.
You don't find it hard
to do your duty?
Sometimes I do
what I want to do.
The rest of the time
I do what I have to.
We may not be able
to go home after all.
Are you ready to do
your duty for Rome?
Yes, Father.
You will not be emperor.
Which wiser,
older man is to take my place?
My powers
will pass to Maximus...
to hold
in trust...
until the Senate
is ready to rule once more.
Rome is to be
a republic again.
- Maximus.
- Yes.
My decision
disappoints you?
You wrote to me once,
Listing the four chief virtues.
Wisdom, justice,
fortitude and temperance.
As I read the list,
I knew I had none of them.
But I have other virtues, Father.
That can be a virtue
when it drives us to excel.
Perhaps not on
the battlefield, but...
there are many forms of courage.
to my family...
and to you.
But none of my virtues
were on your list.
Even then it was as if
you didn't want me for your son.
Oh, Commodus.
You go too far.
I search the faces
of the gods...
for ways to please you,
to make you proud.
One kind word,
one full hug...
where you pressed me
to your chest and held me tight,
would have been like the sun
on my heart for a thousand years.
- What is it in me you hate so much?
- Shah, Commodus.
All I've ever wanted...
was to live up to you,
Your faults as a son...
is my failure as a father.
I would butcher
the whole world...
if you would
only love me!
Maximus, the Emperor needs you.
It's urgent.
Lament with me, brother.
Our great father is dead.
How did he die?
The surgeons say there was no pain.
His breath gave out
as he slept.
Your emperor asks
for your loyalty, Maximus.
Take my hand.
I only offer it once.
Hail, Caesar.
I must go to the senators.
I need their counsel.
- Wake Gaius and Falco.
- Gaius and Falco.
- Sword.
- Sword.
Maximus, please be careful.
That was not prudent.
The Emperor has been slain.
The Emperor died of natural causes.
- Why are you armed, Quintus?
- Guards!
Please don't fight,
I'm sorry. Caesar has spoken.
Ride until dawn...
and then execute him.
Quintus, look at me.
Look at me!
Promise me that you will
look after my family.
Your family will meet you
in the afterlife.
- No!
Blessed Father,
watch over my wife and son.
- Whisper to them that I live
only to hold them again.
At least give me
a clean death.
A soldier's death.
The frost, sometimes it makes
the blade stick.
Hyah! Hyah!
Remember the last time you were home?
Two years, 264 days, and this morning.
Blessed Father, watch over my
wife and son with a ready sword.
Whisper to them I live only
to hold them again.
For all else is dust and air,
and I live only to hold them again.
For all else is dust and air.
- Mama, isoldati!
- Papa! Papa!
Hyah! Hyah!
- Don't die.
- You'll meet them again.
- Not yet.
No! They will clean it.
Wait and see.
Don't die.
They'll feed you
to the lions.
They are worth more
than we are.
Better now?
Clean. You see?
My old friend.
Every day is a great day
when you are here.
is your most fortunate day.
Those giraffes
you sold me...
they won't mate.
They just walk around
eating and not mating.
You sold me...
queer giraffes.
- I want my money back.
- Not a chance.
- I do special price for you.
- On what?
Have you seen my new stock?
Come and see them.
Do any of them fight?
I've got a match coming up.
Some are good for fighting,
others for dying.
You need both, I think.
Get up!
- What's your trade?
- I was a hunter.
Oh, no. I bought him
from a salt mine in Carthage.
Sit down!
Mark of the legion.
- Deserter.
- Maybe so. But who cares?
- He's a Spaniard.
- I'll take six...
- for 1 ,000.
- 1,000?
The Numidian alone
is worth 2,000!
These slaves
are rotten.
It all adds to the flavor.
No. No, no, no. Wait-Wait.
Wait! Can negotiate.
I'll give you 2,000...
and four for the beasts.
That's 5,000
for an old friend.
Come on! How long does it take
to get into my own house?
I am Proximo!
I shall be closer to you
for the next few days,
which will be last of your miserable
lives, than that bitch of a mother...
- that brought you screaming
into this world!
I did not pay good money
for you for your company!
- I paid it so that I could
profit from your death.
And as your mother
was there at your beginning,
so I shall be there
at your end.
- And when you die, and die you shall,
your transition shall be
to the sound of-
Gladiators, I salute you.
- Yellow!
- Red.
- Red!
- Uhh.
That's enough
for the moment!
His time will come.
Spaniard, why don't you fight?
We all have to fight.
Is that the sign
of your gods?
Will that not anger them?
The gods favor you.
Red is the gods' color.
You will need
their help today.
Some of you are thinking
you won't fight.
Some that you can't fight.
They all say that,
until they're out there.
- Listen.
-Kill. Kill. Kill.
Kill. Kill. Kill.
Thrust this
into another man's flesh,
and then they will applaud
and love you for that.
You may begin
to love them...
for that.
we're all dead men.
Sadly, we cannot
choose how, but...
we can decide how
we meet that end...
in order that
we are remembered...
as men.
On the left,
draw your shields!
On the right,
draw your swords!
-Kill. Kill-
Pair them up-
red with yellow.
- Hyah! Hyah!
- Go away!
He enters Rome
like a conquering hero.
But what
has he conquered?
Give him time, Gracchus.
He's young.
I think he could do very well.
For Rome or for you?
Go to your mother, Lucius.
It's what she'd like.
- Lucius!
- Mother!
- Hail, Caesar.
- Senators.
Rome greets
her new emperor.
Your loyal subjects
bid you welcome, Highness.
Thank you, Falco.
And for the loyal subjects,
- I trust they weren't too expensive.
- Caesar.
- Gracchus.
- All Rome rejoices
in your return, Caesar.
There are many matters
that require your attention.
- To order! To order!
For your guidance, Caesar, the Senate
has prepared a series of protocols...
to begin addressing
the many problems in the city.
Beginning with basic sanitation
for the Greek quarter...
to combat the plague which is already
springing up there.
- So, if Caesar-
- Shah.
Don't you see, Gracchus?
That's the very problem,
isn't it?
My father spent
all his time at study...
of books and learning
and philosophy.
He spent his twilight hours
reading scrolls from the Senate.
And all the while,
the people have forgotten-
But the Senate
is the People, sire.
Chosen from among the people...
to speak for the people.
I doubt that many of the people
eat so well as you do, Gracchus.
Or have such splendid mistresses, Gaius.
I think I understand my own people.
Then, perhaps Caesar will
be so good as to teach us...
out of his own
extensive experience.
- I call it love.
- I am their father.
The people are my children.
And I shall hold them to my bosom
and embrace them tightly.
Have you ever embraced someone
dying of plague, sire?
No, but if you interrupt me again,
I assure you that you shall.
Senator, my brother
is very tired.
Leave your list with me.
Caesar shall do
all that Rome requires.
My lady, as always,
your lightest touch commands obedience.
Who are they
to lecture me?
Commodus, the Senate has its uses.
What uses?
All they do is talk.
It should be just...
you and me...
- and Rome.
- Don't even think it!
There's always
been a Senate.
Rome has changed.
It takes an emperor...
-to rule an empire.
-Of course, but leave the people their-
My father's war
against the barbarians-
He said it himself,
it achieved nothing.
- But the people loved him.
- The people always love victories.
Why? They didn't see the battles.
- What do they care about Germania?
- They care about the greatness of Rome.
The greatness of Rome.
Well, what is that?
It's an idea-
- Greatness is a vision.
- Exactly. A vision.
Do you not see, Lucilla?
I will give the people a vision of Rome,
and they'll love me for it.
And they'll soon forget the tedious
sermonizing of a few dry, old men.
I will give the people
the greatest vision of their lives.
Vino, vino, vino!
White and red wine
for your drinking pleasure!
Vino, vino, vino! Red and white wine
for your drinking pleasure!
- He's cleverer than I thought.
- Oh, clever.
The whole of Rome would
be laughing at him...
if they weren't so afraid
of his Praetorians.
Fear and wonder-
a powerful combination.
You really think the people
are going to be seduced by that?
I think he knows what Rome is.
Rome is the mob.
Conjure magic for them,
and they'll be distracted.
Take away their freedom
and still they'll roar.
The beating heart
of Rome...
is not the marble
of the Senate.
It's the sand
of the Colosseum.
He'll bring them death,
and they will
love him for it.
Spaniard! Spaniard!
Spaniard! Spaniard!
- Spain.
- Spaniard.
- Spaniard.
- Spaniard.
- Spaniard.
- Spaniard.
- Are you not entertained?
Are you not entertained?
Is this not why you are here?
Spaniard! Spaniard!
Spaniard! Spaniard!
Spaniard! Spaniard! Spaniard! Spaniard!
Spaniard! Spaniard! Spaniard!
Spaniard! Spaniard!
Spaniard! Spaniard!
What do you want?
- You sent for me?
- Yes, I did.
You're good, Spaniard,
but you're not that good.
- You could be magnificent.
- I'm required to kill, so I kill.
That is enough.
That's enough for the provinces,
but not for Rome.
- The young emperor...
has arranged
a series of spectacles...
to commemorate his father,
Marcus Aurelius.
I find that amusing...
since it was Marcus Aurelius-
the wise, the all-knowing
Marcus Aurelius-
- that closed us down.
So, finally, after five years
of scratching a living...
in flea-infested
we're finally going back
to where we belong-
the Colosseum.
Oh, you should see
the Colosseum, Spaniard.
Fifty-thousand Romans...
every movement of your sword,
willing you to make
that killer blow.
The silence before you strike...
and the noise afterwards,
it rises-
it rises up like-
Like th-
Like- Like a storm...
as if you were
the thunder god himself.
- You were a gladiator?
- Yes, I was.
You won your freedom?
A long time ago,
the emperor...
presented me
with a rudius.
It's just a wooden sword.
The symbol of your freedom.
- He touched me on the shoulder,
and I was free.
- You knew Marcus Aurelius?
- I did not say I knew him.
I said he touched me
on the shoulder once.
You asked me what I want.
I, too, want to stand
in front of the emperor...
as you did.
Then, listen to me.
Learn from me.
I wasn't the best
because I killed quickly.
I was the best
because the crowd loved me.
Win the crowd,
and you'll win your freedom.
I will win the crowd.
- I will give them something
they have never seen before.
- Ha!
So, Spaniard,
we shall go to Rome together...
and have bloody adventures!
And the great whore
will suckle us until we are...
fat and happy and
can suckle no more.
And then,
when enough men have died,
perhaps you will
have your freedom.
Here. Use this.
It's somewhere out there-
my country, my home.
My wife is preparing food.
My daughters carry
water from the river.
Will I ever
see them again?
I think no.
Do you believe you'll see
them again when you die?
I think so.
But then, I will die soon.
They will not die
for many years.
- I'll have to wait.
- But you would... wait.
Of course.
You see,
my wife...
and my son...
are already
waiting for me.
You'll meet them again.
But not yet.
Not yet. Unless-
Not yet.
Not yet.
Go, go. Out!
Good to see you again,
old friend.
Bring me fortune.
Have you ever seen
anything like that before?
- I didn't know men
could build such things.
Win the crowd.
Get Inside! Move. Inside.
He sleeps so well
because he's loved.
Come, brother.
It's late.
I will make Rome
the wonder of the ages.
That is what Gracchus
and his friends don't understand.
All my desires are splitting
my head to pieces.
drink this tonic.
I think the time
is almost right.
I could announce
the dissolution of the Senate...
at the celebration
to honor our father.
You think I should?
Are the people ready?
I think you need
your rest now.
- Will you stay with me?
- Still afraid of the dark, brother?
Still. Always.
- Stay with me tonight?
- You know I won't.
Then, kiss me.
Sleep, brother.
Come on now.
Get out of the way!
I want you. I want you.
I want you so-
All right, Let him pass!
The emperor wants battles, and I don't
want to sacrifice my best fighters.
The crowd wants battles,
so the emperor gives them battles.
And you get
the battle of Carthage.
The massacre of Carthage.
Guten tag.
Oh, why don't you go down
to the prison and round up
all the beggars and thieves.
We've done that.
If you want to give away
the best gladiators
in the whole of the empire,
I want double the rates.
You'll get your contract rates,
or you'll get your contract cancelled.
You don't like it?
Then you can crawl back down
that shithole that you came from.
-Cassius, please! Please, Cassius!
Gladiator, are you the one
they call the Spaniard?
- Yes.
- They said you were a giant.
They said you could
crush a man's skull with one hand.
A man's? No.
A boy's.
- They have good horses in Spain?
- Some of the best.
This is Argento,
and this is Scarto.
They were my horses.
- They were taken from me.
- I like you, Spaniard.
- I shall cheer for you.
- They let you watch the games?
- My uncle says it makes me strong.
- And what does your father say?
My father's dead.
Master Lucius, it is time.
- I have to go.
- Your name is Lucius?
Lucius Verus,
after my father.
-Claudius! More shields!
- Yes, sir.
When the emperor enters,
raise your weapons,
salute him and then speak together!
Face the emperor and don't
turn your back on him!
Go, and die with honor!
Hail, mighty Caesar!
Caesar! Caesar! Caesar!
Caesar! Caesar! Caesar!
And we who are about to die, salute you!
On this day,
we reach back
to hallowed antiquity...
to bring you a recreation
of the second fall...
of mighty Carthage!
On the barren
plain of Zama,
there stood
the invincible armies...
of the barbarian, Hannibal.
Ferocious mercenaries and warriors...
from all brute nations...
bent on merciless...
destruction, conquest.
Your emperor
is pleased to give you...
the barbarian horde!
- Anyone here been in the army?
- No.
- Yes.
I served
with you at Vindobona.
You can help me.
Whatever comes
out of these gates,
we've got a better chance
of survival if we work together.
Do you understand?
If we stay together,
we survive.
I'm pleased to bring you
the legionnaires...
of Scipio Africanus!
To the death!
- Kill! Kill! Kill! Kill!
Stay close!
Come together!
- Staggered columns!
Staggered columns!
Soon all your men
will be slain.
You don't have a chance!
Lock your shields! Stay as one!
As one! As one!
- As one!
- As one!
Well done!
Hyah! Hyah!
Diamond! Diamond!
- Yes!
- Haken!
This column to the chariots!
This column...
-stay with me!
- Get out there!
- Hurry!
Ooh-ooh, ooh-ooh.
Single column!
Single column!
Single column! Single column!
- We win!
My history's
a little hazy, Cassius.
But shouldn't the barbarians
lose the battle of Carthage?
Uh, yes, sire.
Um, forgive me, sire.
No, I rather
enjoy surprises.
- Who is he?
- They call him the Spaniard, sire.
- I think I'll meet him.
- Yes, sire.
Hail to the barbarians!
Forward! Arms at ready!
Drop your weapons!
Gladiator, the emperor
has asked for you.
I'm at the emperor's service.
Rise. Rise.
Your fame is well deserved,
I don't think there's ever
been a gladiator to match you.
As for this young man,
he insists you are Hector reborn.
Or was it Hercules?
Why doesn't the hero reveal himself
and tell us all your real name?
- You do have a name?
- My name is Gladiator.
- How dare you show your back to me?
You will remove your helmet
and tell me your name.
My name is
Maximus Decimus Meridius,
commander of the armies
of the north,
general of the Felix Legions,
Loyal servant to the true emperor,
Marcus Aurelius,
father to a murdered son,
husband to a murdered wife...
and I will have my vengeance...
in this life or the next.
Live! Live! Live!
Live! Live! Live!
Live! Live! Live!
Live! Live! Live!
Live! Live! Live!
Live! Live!
Live! Live!
Guards, at rest!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
Why is he still alive?
I don't know.
He shouldn't be alive.
It vexes me.
I'm terribly vexed.
I did what I had to do.
If Father had had his way,
the empire would have been torn apart.
You do see that?
What did you feel...
when you saw him?
I felt nothing.
He wounded you deeply,
didn't he?
No more than
I wounded him.
They lied to me in Germania.
They told me he was dead.
If they lie to me,
they don't respect me.
If they don't respect me,
how can they ever love me?
Then you must
let the legions know...
their treachery
will not go unpunished.
Poor sister, I wouldn't
want to be your enemy.
What will you do?
This way!
Rich matrons pay well to be pleasured
by the bravest champions.
I knew your brother
would send assassins.
I didn't realize
he would send his best.
he doesn't know.
My family was burned and crucified
while they were still alive.
- I knew nothing-
- Don't lie to me!
- I wept for them.
- As you wept for your father?
As you wept for
your father?
I have been living in
a prison of fear since that day.
To be unable to mourn your father
for fear of your brother.
To live in terror
every moment of every day...
because your son
is heir to the throne.
Oh, I have wept.
My son was innocent.
So is mine.
Must my son die, too,
before you will trust me?
What does it matter
if I trust you or not?
The gods have spared you.
Don't you understand?
Today I saw a slave become
more powerful than the emperor of Rome.
The gods
have spared me?
I am at their mercy,
with the power only to amuse a mob!
That is power.
The mob is Rome.
And while Commodus controls them,
he controls everything.
Listen to me.
My brother has enemies,
most of all in the senate.
But while
the people follow him,
no one would dare
stand up to him until you.
They oppose him,
yet they do nothing.
There are some politicians
who have dedicated their lives to Rome.
One man above all.
If I can arrange it,
will you meet him?
Do you not understand?
I may die in this cell tonight,
or in the arena tomorrow. I am a slave!
What possible
difference can I make?
This man wants
what you want.
Then have him
kill Commodus!
I knew a man once,
a noble man,
a man of principle...
who loved
my father.
And my father
loved him.
This man
served Rome well.
That man is gone.
Your brother
did his work well.
Let me help you.
Yes, you can help me.
Forget you ever knew me...
and never
come here again.
Guard! The lady has finished with me.
You commanded legions?
You had many victories?
- Yes.
- In Germania?
In many countries.
You have a great name.
He must kill your name
before he kills you.
Yes, at the far end.
- Senator Gaius.
- Hello.
Senator Gracchus.
Don't often see you enjoying
the pleasures of the vulgar crowd.
I don't pretend to be a man
of the people, Senator.
But I do try to be a man
for the people.
Caesar! Caesar! Caesar!
Caesar! Caesar!
Caesar! Caesar! Caesar!
People of Rome!
On the fourth day
of Antioch,
we can celebrate
the 64th day of the games.
And, in his
majestic charity,
the Emperor has deigned this day
to favor the people of Rome...
with an historical
final match.
Returning to the Colosseum today...
after five years
in retirement, Caesar...
is pleased to bring you
the only...
undefeated champion...
- Yah! Yah!
-in Roman history,
the legendary Tigris of Gaul!
Whoa! Whoa!
He knows too well
how to manipulate the mob.
Marcus Aurelius had a dream
that was Rome, Proximo.
This is not it!
This is not it!
Marcus Aurelius is dead,
We mortals are but
shadows and dust.
- Shadows and dust, Maximus!
Representing the training
lyceum of Antonius Proximo,
Caesar is proud
to give you...
Aelius Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
They embrace him like
he's one of their own.
The mob is fickle, brother.
He'll be forgotten in a month.
Maximus! Maximus!
No, much sooner
than that.
It's been arranged.
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
We who are about to die salute you.
We're with you, Maximus!
Come on, finish it!
- No!
- Pull! Pull!
- Aah!
Loose! Loose!
Loose! Loose!
Get him!
Kill him!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
- Kill! Kill!
- Kill! Kill!
- Kill!
- Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Kill! Kill!
Maximus the Merciful!
Maximus the Merciful!
Maximus the Merciful!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Forward, guards! On battery!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
What am I going
to do with you?
You simply won't...
Are we so different,
you and l?
You take life
when you have to...
as I do.
I have only one more life to take.
Then it is done.
Then take it now.
They tell me your son...
squealed like a girl...
when they nailed him
to the cross.
And your wife...
moaned like a whore...
when they ravaged her...
again and again...
and again.
The time for honoring yourself
will soon be at an end.
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
General! General!
- General! General!
- Get back!
- General!
- Cicero!
Maximus! Maximus!
- General!
- General.
- Where are you camped?
- Ostia.
- Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
- We love you, Maximus!
- Praise the victor!
Tell the men their general lives.
Find me.
- Move along!
- Find me!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Can they hear you?
Your family,
in the afterlife.
- Oh, yes.
- What do you say to them?
To my boy,
I tell him I will
see him again soon.
To keep his heels down
when he's riding his horse.
To my wife-
That is not
your business.
And now they love Maximus
for his mercy.
So I can't just kill him,
or it makes me even more unmerciful!
The whole thing's
like some crazed nightmare.
He is defying you.
His every victory
is an act of defiance.
The mob sees this,
and so do the senate.
Every day he lives,
they grow bolder.
- Kill him.
- No.
I will not make
a martyr of him.
I have been told...
of a certain sea snake...
which has a very unusual method
of attracting its prey.
It will lie at the bottom
of the ocean as if wounded.
Then its enemies
will approach,
and yet it will
lie quite still.
And then its enemies
will take little bites of it,
and yet it remains...
we will lie still...
and let our enemies
come to us and nibble.
Have every senator followed.
Cicero, my old friend.
I thought perhaps
I'd seen you for the last time.
- I thought you were dead.
- Close.
How long have the men
been in Ostia?
- All winter.
- And how do they look?
Fattened and bored.
Who's in command?
Some fool from Rome.
- How soon do you think they
could be ready to fight?
- For you, tomorrow.
I need you to
do something for me.
Come see. Witness.
If you haven't been in the arena,
you can see the show here.
Giant Maximus is defeating
our Emperor Commodus. What are we to do?
He's defying everyone.
What will we do?
- Ah! Look at that!
- Oh, he got him!
Give way! Give way!
Give way!
Three casks of red wine.
My lady?
I served your father at Vindobona.
- Mylady.
I served your father
at Vindobona.
- Back!
- And I served the General Maximus.
I serve him still.
- Stop.
Stand back.
The General sends word.
He will meet your politician.
- For your loyalty, soldier.
- Thank you, my lady.
Leave us.
Senator Gracchus.
I hope my coming here today
is evidence enough that...
you can trust me.
- The senate is with you?
- The senate?
Yes. I can speak for them.
You can buy my freedom
and smuggle me out of Rome?
To what end?
Get me outside
the city walls.
Have fresh horses ready to take me
to Ostia. My army's encamped there.
By nightfall of the second day,
I shall return at the head of 5,000 men.
But the legions all have new commanders
loyal to Commodus.
Let my men see me alive, and you
shall see where their loyalties lie.
This is madness.
- No Roman army has entered
the capital in a hundred years.
- Gracchus-
I will not trade
one dictatorship for another!
The time for half-measures
and talk is over, Senator.
And after your glorious coup,
what then?
You'll take your
I will leave.
The soldiers will stay
for your protection,
under the command of the senate.
So, once all
of Rome is yours,
you'll just give it
back to the people?
Tell me why.
Because that was the
last wish of a dying man.
I will kill Commodus.
The fate of Rome
I leave to you.
Marcus Aurelius trusted you.
His daughter trusts you.
I will trust you.
But we have little time.
Give me two days...
and I will buy your freedom.
And you-
You stay alive.
Or I'll be dead.
Now we must go.
It won't work.
The Emperor
knows too much.
And as for me,
it's becoming dangerous.
You will be paid
on my return.
- I give you my word.
Your word?
What if you don't return?
Do you remember what it was
to have trust, Proximo?
Who am I to trust?
I will kill Commodus.
Why would I want that?
He makes me rich.
Oh, l-
I know that you are
a man of your word, General.
I know that you
would die for honor.
You would
die for Rome.
You would die for
the memory of your ancestors.
But l,
on the other hand-
I'm an entertainer.
Hmm? Guard!
He killed the man
who set you free.
Praetorians, master.
Where have you been?
I sent for you.
Please, brother.
What's troubling you?
Does Gracchus
have a new lover?
I don't know.
I thought you'd seen him.
He infects everyone
like a putrid fever.
For the health of Rome,
the senate must be bled.
And he will bleed, too.
Very soon.
But not tonight.
Do you remember what
our father said once?
"It's a dream-
a frightful dream-
Life is."
Do you think that's true?
I don't know.
I think it is.
And I have only you
to share it with.
Open your mouth.
You know I love you.
And I love you.
Out. Get out!
Congratulations, General.
You've got very...
persuasive friends.
My brother's had
Gracchus arrested.
We daren't wait any longer.
We must leave tonight.
Proximo will come at midnight
and take you to the gate.
Your servant, Cicero,
will be waiting there with horses.
You have done all this?
- Yes.
- You risk too much.
I have much to pay for.
You have nothing to pay for.
You love your son.
You're strong for him.
I am tired of being strong.
My brother hates all the world,
and you most of all.
- Because your father chose me.
- No.
Because my father loved you.
And because I loved you.
A long time ago.
Was I very different then?
You laughed more.
I have felt alone
all my life,
except with you.
I must go.
There. There.
- There. There. There.
There. There. There.
There. There. There.
There. There. There.
- There. There. There. There.
And I've got you.
Isn't it late
to be playing legionnaire?
I'm not a legionnaire.
- Not a legionnaire?
- I'm a gladiator.
A gladiator?
Gladiators only fight in the games.
Wouldn't you rather be...
a great Roman warrior
like Julius Caesar?
I'm Maximus,
the savior of Rome!
The savior of Rome?
And who said that?
Where's Lucius?
He's with the Emperor, my lady.
-She couldn't.
- Yes, she did.
She took it from a basket
and pressed it to her breast,
right here
above her heart.
It bit her in the breast?
You see, Lucius,
sometimes royal ladies...
behave very strangely and do
very odd things in the name of love.
I think it's silly.
So do l.
So do l.
Sister, join us.
I've been reading
to dear Lucius.
- I've been reading too.
- Yes.
He's a very clever
little boy.
He'll make a grand
emperor one day.
We've been reading about the great
Mark Antony and his adventures in Egypt.
The queen killed herself
with a snake.
And just wait until you hear what
happened to our ancestors.
If you're very good,
tomorrow night I'll tell you
the story of Emperor Claudius.
He was betrayed...
by those closest to him.
By his own blood.
They whispered in dark corners...
and went out
late at night...
and conspired...
and conspired.
But the Emperor Claudius
knew that they were up to something.
He knew they were
busy little bees.
And one night he sat down
with one of them...
and he looked at her...
and he said,
"Tell me what you've been doing,
busy little bee,
or I shall strike down
those dearest to you.
You shall watch
as I bathe in their blood. "
And the Emperor
was heartbroken.
The little bee had
wounded him more deeply...
than anyone else
could ever have done.
And what do you think
happened then, Lucius?
I don't know, Uncle.
The little bee
told him everything.
Open, in the name of the Emperor!
Open the gates in the name
of the Emperor!
- Proximo!
Open the gates!
Open the gates, Proximo!
Do you want to die, old man?
Everything is prepared.
- It seems you've won your freedom.
- Proximo,
are you in danger
of becoming a good man?
- All enemies of the Emperor die!
Open the gates!
The Emperor commands!
Move! Two columns on the left!
I only need moments,
so do not be careless with your lives.
If you don't want any part of this,
go back to your cells.
We'll wait here for you,
- Strength and honor.
- Go!
Strength and honor.
Aim! Break the bars!
Shadows and dust.
- Maximus!
I'm sorry.
It's done.
And what of my nephew?
And what of his mother?
Should they share
her lover's fate?
Or should
I be merciful?
Commodus the Merciful.
Lucius will stay with me now.
And if his mother...
so much as looks at me...
in a manner that displeases me,
he will die.
If she decides...
to be noble...
and takes her own life,
he will die.
And as for you,
you will love me...
as I loved you.
You will provide me
with an heir...
of pure blood...
so that Commodus
and his progeny...
will rule for
a thousand years.
Am I not merciful?
Am I not merciful?
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
They call for you.
The general
who became a slave.
The slave
who became a gladiator.
The gladiator
who defied an emperor.
A striking story.
Now the people want to know
how the story ends.
Only a famous death will do.
And what could be
more glorious...
than to challenge the Emperor
himself in the great arena?
You would fight me?
Why not?
Do you think I'm afraid?
I think you have been afraid
all your life.
Unlike Maximus the Invincible,
who knows no fear?
I knew a man who once said,
" Death smiles at us all.
All a man can do
is smile back."
I wonder.
Did your friend
smile at his own death?
You must know.
He was your father.
You loved my father,
I know.
But so did l.
That makes us brothers,
doesn't it?
Smile for me now, brother.
- Strap on his armor.
Conceal the wound.
Maximus! Maximus!
Maximus! Maximus!
Ring formation!
Ring formation!
Off with his head, Maximus!
- Aah!
Maximus! Maximus! Maximus!
Quintus, sword!
Give me your sword!
Sword! Give me a sword!
- Sheathe your swords!
Sheathe yours words!
- Maximus.
- Quintus.
Free my men.
Senator Gracchus
is to be reinstated.
There was a dream
that was Rome.
It shall be realized.
These are the wishes
of Marcus Aurelius.
Free the prisoners!
Lucius is safe.
Go to them.
You're home.
Is Rome worth
one good man's life?
We believed it once.
Make us
believe it again.
He was a soldier of Rome.
Honor him.
Who will help me carry him?
Now we are free.
I will see you again.
But not yet.
Not yet.