Spartacus and the Ten Gladiators (1964)

A bunch of gladiators, led by Rocca, are kicked out of the arena for arguing with their boss when some other troupe of gladiators is forced to kill each other even though they are all friends! Wandering around, they come upon a young lady being threatened by some goons and Rocca leaps into battle to save her. It turns out she (Deliah) is the daughter of Senator Varro, who welcomes the gladiators into his home in return for saving Deliah.

Shortly after, Varro mentions that his slave, Spartacus, has escaped and is preparing some kind of slave revolt and wonders if Rocca and his men might take care of things for them. They do, and of course they end up befriending Spartacus and his crew once they are told how irredeemably evil Varro is.

This turned out to be a pretty entertaining gladiator flick. Like most movies of this kind, the good guys are totally good in every way and the bad guys are totally despicable human beings. For an obviously low budget movie some of the battle scenes are pretty epic in size and the choreography is nice.

I think the most interesting thing about this movie is that while it deals with a bunch of guys who have no rights whatsoever and are forced to kill each other in battle in order to entertain a bunch of monsters, this movie is really lighthearted. While watching it, there were plenty of times that I forgot I was watching a movie about the cruelty of humanity, and instead it was about a bunch of beefy guys in short shorts horsing around. These are your new breed of fun-loving happy-go-lucky slave gladiators. Instead of screaming a lot and delivering dramatic speeches about how they will never fall to the combined might of all of Rome, these are the kinds of guys that will punch a soldier on the side of the head (doesn't matter that he is wearing a helmet), and then place his body on a pile of other soldiers and just laugh and laugh. If this movie came out in the 80s, I think they would then exchange high-fives.

So if you are in the mood to watch a movie about a bunch of gladiators who are just so happy they gotta smile, I think you could do no better than Spartacus and the Ten Gladiators!


Veronica said...

Haha sounds a little... ya know.. like the gay stuff [/Dave]

newtmonkey said...

at first I was thinking "Dave?" but then I figured it out.