Corrected entry: In the real gladiatorial games of ancient Rome, the emperor didn't make the gesture of "thumbs up" (kill) or "thumbs down" (live) That was the job of a referee, even though it isn't as dramatic. Also, the thumbs down sign usually didn't mean death for the defeated gladiator, but instead he would face a flogging.
Corrected entry: The daughter of Marcus Aurelius could not be called "Lucilla" because Roman women were named after the female form of their father's nomen (second or clan name). Since "Aurelius" is the emperor's nomen, his daughter's name should be "Aurelia" (female form of the nomen) not Lucilla. She can be named Lucilla if her father's nomen is Lucius.megamii
Corrected entry: Throughout the film, the main character is referred to as Maximus. However, as his name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, there is no way that anyone in the army, even the highest officers, would have called him by his first name. The higher officers may have referred to him as Meridius, but only his family and very close friends would have adressed him as Maximus. However, in several places in the film, his junior officers refer to him as Maximus.
Corrected entry: During the Battle of Carthage, there is a female gladiator cut in half by a passing chariot. Watch carefully before she's bisected, and you'll see she's leaning forward inside her chariot trying to release the chariot from a wounded horse, which oddly is still moving. However when she's cut in half, she's kneeling on the ground, not in the chariot. It happens very fast, but if you have it on DVD you can clearly see the error.
Corrected entry: In one of the scenes after the first big battle, there is a horse in the background. You see it stand up. If you look closely, there is about 5 feet of chain, attached to its leg, holding it to a nearby tree.
Corrected entry: Maximus received his wound (which runs horizontally across his deltoid) from a clash with a praetorian guard but Maximus was wearing steel plated shoulder guards at the time which didn't seem to be punctured from the clash. After the clash, Maximus reaches under his shoulder guard and draws blood on his fingers. How did he get this wound?
Corrected entry: Throughout the film, Maximus refers to his home back in Spain, and he is called "The Spaniard" in gladiatorial contests. Spain as a nation, or even as a concept, did not exist until much later. That land was known to the Romans as Iberia, and Maximus would therefore be called an Iberian, NOT a Spaniard.
Corrected entry: When the slaves have their first big fight in the Roman colosseum, Djimon Honsou's character throws a weapon to Russell Crowe, addressing him as "Maximus". However, this is before he had revealed his real name to anyone, and he was simply called "Spaniard". He doesn't reveal his name until the fight is over, and the Emperor comes out to meet him.
Corrected entry: The Emperors' box was on the second level (first tier) in the colosseum, and he would never be so close to the fights as he could have been hit by a stray arrow, spear or a gladiator could have just walked up and stabbed him.
Corrected entry: The very first scene is a winter battle. Romans did not fight in winter. In winter supplies and logistics were too hard to manage at the same time as expanding an Empire. Everyone stayed at home (or guarded frontiers).
Corrected entry: The legionaries all draw their swords across their bodies, the swords being in hilts on their left, but Roman soldiers actually carried swords on their right, and twisted their hands round to draw them.
Commodus: What is your name, gladiator?
[Maximus turns away.]
Commodus: How dare you show your back to me! You will remove your helmet and tell me your name!
[Maximus slowly turns and removes his helmet.]
Maximus: 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.
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