Spartacus Screen 3 articles

Spartacus

1960

Spartacus Poster
  • A blockbuster epic that might be described even in its newly restored form as a wonderful mess — uneven but often exciting and emotionally stirring — Spartacus actually encapsulates the onset of the Kennedy era in much the way that Cecil B. De Mille’s The Ten Commandments (1956) epitomized Eisenhower’s last term of office.

  • The daring ventures into eroticism and violence both prefigured and paved the way for later epics like Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator, films that would be inconceivable had Spartacus not brought an adult sensibility and genuine filmmaking flair to a genre previously steeped in piety and puerility.

  • Sword-and-sandal epics may be out of style now, but Spartacus is still as stirring as ever—especially in light of the recent rise and fall of Occupy Wall Street movement, which suggests how vital the film’s liberal sympathies remain today.

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