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Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray

United States
Extended and Theatrical Cut | First Press Paramount Pictures | 2000 | 1 Movie, 2 Cuts | 171 min | Rated R | Sep 01, 2009

Gladiator: Sapphire Series (Blu-ray)
Large:


Video
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 2.35:1
Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1

Audio
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
French: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1

Subtitles
English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Korean

Discs
50GB Blu-ray Disc
Two-disc set (2 BDs)

Packaging
Slipcover in original pressing

Playback
Region A (locked)

Price
Buy on:

Other editions
United States Gladiator $11.99
United States Gladiator $13.50
United States Gladiator $17.98
United States Gladiator $17.98

Movie rating
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
8.7
1076
ratings.


Blu-ray rating
Video 3.2 of 53.2
Audio 4.6 of 54.6
Extras 4.4 of 54.4
Based on 83 user reviews

Movie appeal

 
Action100%
Adventure74%
Epic63%
History36%
Drama23%
95%
popularity
3848
collections
396
fans




Gladiator: Sapphire Series

 (2000)

Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray offers decent video and superb audio in this excellent Blu-ray release

In the final days of Marcus Aurelius' reign, the aging emperor angers his son Commodus by making it known that he wants Maximus, a fearsome and respected Roman general, to be his successor. Power-hungry Commodus kills his father and orders the death of Maximus. But the latter flees, only to discover that his wife and child have been murdered by Commodus. Captured, Maximus is forced into slavery, where he is sold to Proximo, a former gladiator who serves as both mentor and slavemaster. Maximus trains as a gladiator in the arena, where his fame grows. He goes to Rome, intent on avenging the murder of his wife and son by killing the new emperor Commodus. Maximus has learned that the one power stronger than that of the emperor is the will of the people, and he knows he can only attain his revenge by becoming the greatest hero in all the empire.

For more about Gladiator: Sapphire Series and the Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray release, see Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 4.0 out of 5.

Starring: Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Oliver Reed, Richard Harris, Djimon Hounsou
Director: Ridley Scott

» See full cast & crew


Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray, Video Quality

  3.0 of 5

Vanishing arrows! Fireballs that phase in-and-out of the space-time continuum! No, it's not The Prestige or the latest Star Trek; it's the pre-release buzz surrounding Paramount's highly-anticipated Gladiator, the first of two films, alongside Braveheart, to be released under the brand-new "Sapphire Series" label. After weeks of speculation, back-and-forth bickering, and plenty of rounds of "the blame game," the disc is finally on store shelves and ready for all the world to scrutinize. Far from the worst transfer in this history of home video (beaten out for that honor only by that worn-down VHS copy of Mitchell stashed in the garage. Just kidding.) but certainly lacking in several key areas, Gladiator fails to capture the same film-like, nearly-pristine presentation that accompanies Braveheart. As to the first point in this paragraph, the disappearing act of 1900-year-old weapons: it's nearly impossible to notice in real-time on the 1080p presentation, viewing on a 65" screen. There are 100 other things going on in-frame during these scenes, each vying for viewers' attention, and it's not like Russell Crow uses the later battle scenes in Gladiator as an extended audition for the latest adaptation of The Invisible Man.

On to what's actually visible on the disc. Gladiator does indeed feature some scrubbing and edge enhancement. Fine detail can look acceptably good throughout despite the problems, but it never looks completely natural or film-like. Maximus' armor and fur collar as seen during the opening battle scene (home of the wayward arrows and missing fireballs) look decent enough, but the entire scene isn't helped by the fact that it's meant to look virtually lifeless. It takes place on the edge of a dank, dreary, cold, and dead forest with overcast gray skies that suck the life and color out of the entire sequence. It's not something that's going to positively sparkle even under ideal 1080p conditions, but there is a palpable absence of grain that further removes any sense of life from the action. The scrubbing renders these and most other backgrounds throughout the film sterile, and while faces retain a decent level of detail, there are patches where foreheads and cheeks look like they've been airbrushed and are certainly not up to the same standards as the most finely-detailed Blu-ray discs, for example The Interntaional or Paramount's own Iron Man and Transformers.

Perhaps the most distracting element of the transfer comes in the form of extremely heavy edge enhancement. One look at most any scene will reveal heavy outlines around characters and objects. It's more noticeable in some places than in others, but it lends to the transfer an artificial appearance that's wholly distracting. A good place to get an idea of how bad it can look may be found in chapter eight during the scene that sees Maximus escape his execution in the forest, and there are plenty of moments throughout, particularly in longer-distance shots, that drive the point home. Flesh tones also come off as featuring a somewhat red appearance throughout, and there's some heavy banding in the background during the film's text-based introduction. As is the case with every transfer on the market, different viewers with different eyes and different equipment with different sensitivities and different expectations will inevitably see the same transfer in a radically different light than another, and it's up to each individual viewer to judge the quality of a disc within their own set of parameters.


Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  4.5 of 5

Gladiator sports a much less controversial DTS-HD MA 5.1 lossless soundtrack. Though not the most earth-shattering, record-breaking, eardrum-busting mix out there, it's well above average across the board. The opening battle sequence sets the stage nicely. Arrows -- whether visible or not -- are certainly heard with a continuous whoosh as they fly through the air towards their targets. Explosions pack a good wallop, and the general mayhem of the battle, which includes screaming soldiers and clanking swords, does well to place the listener in the midst of the carnage. Much like Braveheart, Gladiator reveals a superb nuanced presentation during the quieter segments. A brief scene taking place inside a carriage in chapter three features a fine sensation of being in the cart, with the wheels churning on a rough road outside, the carriage rattling about, and the sound of the horse galloping directly ahead. In chapter six, a breeze blows through Caesar's room and the structure seems to ever-so-slightly sway and creak as a result. As with most any action-heavy soundtrack, it's the little things during the less-intense moments that truly define the quality of the listen, and in that regard Gladiator doesn't disappoint. Still, the action segments feature a full-blown surround presence that places listeners in the arena and may even have them ducking for cover as weapons whirl and fighters maneuver in a virtually seamless 360-degree sound field that's the norm for every fight throughout. Rounded out by pitch-perfect dialogue reproduction, Gladiator sounds fantastic on Blu-ray.


Gladiator: Other Editions



2-disc set
$11.99
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Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray, News and Updates



BD Sales Information: September 7-13 (Update) - September 18, 2009

The Jason Statham actioner 'Crank 2: High Voltage' was far and away the top-selling title on Blu-ray during the week ended September 13, according to Nielsen VideoScan. The sales leader of the previous week, 'Gladiator', was number two, while the number one in ...

Today on Blu-ray - September 1st - September 1, 2009

There is a bit of controversy with one of today's releases, so I'm just going to get this out of the way as quickly as possible to avoid any further distraction. While not a horrible presentation, the Blu-ray release of ‘Gladiator' does not live up to the promise ...

Gladiator, Braveheart, Gump Get Blu-ray Dates and Details - June 22, 2009

After weeks of intense speculation, Paramount Home Entertainment has finally disclosed the Blu-ray release dates and edition details for three of its most-awaited catalog releases, all Best Picture Oscar winners: 'Gladiator' and 'Braveheart' will both street on ...

» Show more related news posts for Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray


Gladiator: Sapphire Series Blu-ray, Forum Discussions



Topic Replies Last post
Gladiator Blu-ray Discussion Thread (

Official Thread

)
6094 Aug 18, 2014

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