Roman historian rates 10 ancient Rome battles in movies and TV

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Historian Michael Taylor rates depictions of ancient Rome in movies and TV shows.

He reviews the depiction of gladiator fights in "Gladiator," starring Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix. He discusses the siege warfare seen in "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny," starring Harrison Ford, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, and Antonio Banderas. He breaks down the Roman naval warfare tactics in "Cleopatra," starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. He explains the dangers of chariot racing in "Ben-Hur," starring Charlton Heston. He compares the unique military formations portrayed in "Spartacus," starring Kirk Douglas; "The Eagle," starring Channing Tatum, Donald Sutherland, and Jamie Bell; and HBO's "Rome," starring Kerry Condon, Tobias Menzies, and Ciarán Hinds. Finally, he analyzes the visual depictions of Roman armor and weapons in "King Arthur," starring Clive Owen, Keira Knightley, and Mads Mikkelsen; "Risen," starring Joseph Fiennes and Tom Felton; and Netflix's "Barbarians."

Michael Taylor is an associate professor of history at the University at Albany. He focuses on ancient military history, especially of the Roman army.

Michael's book, "Soldiers & Silver: Mobilizing Resources in the Age of Roman Conquest," can be found here:

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