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"Best Portrayal of Large Scale Ancient Era Combat" Topic


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811 hits since 30 Dec 2018
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP30 Dec 2018 2:39 p.m. PST

In cinema, what film or television productuon best captures your view of how mass combat in Classical times was fought? (Let's leave aside gladiatorial, small scale mana a mano skirmishing.)

1) King of Kings?
2) 300
3) ?

nnascati Supporting Member of TMP30 Dec 2018 4:30 p.m. PST

Alexander the Great (Richard Burton), the original 300 Spartans.

dBerczerk30 Dec 2018 4:42 p.m. PST

The deployment of the Roman legions for the final battle in "Spartacus" always impressed me as well-researched and brilliantly choreographed. Not sure about the accuracy of the use of the burning / rolling terror weapons Kirk Douglas launched against Olivier, but quite spectacular none the less.

YouTube link

rvandusen30 Dec 2018 4:45 p.m. PST

In the case of how mass combat was fought? None of them, really, but many are highly entertaining.

Personal logo Virtualscratchbuilder Supporting Member of TMP Fezian30 Dec 2018 6:44 p.m. PST

The deployment of the Roman legions for the final battle in "Spartacus" always impressed me as well-researched and brilliantly choreographed.

Agreed. I watch this every so often on Youtube. All done without CGI. Except for maybe the fellow at 0:11 – I have never before seen such a long necked person.

Personal logo Toy Soldier Green Supporting Member of TMP30 Dec 2018 6:45 p.m. PST

The Last Legion had a cool scene where the 9th showed up to save the day.

skippy0001 Supporting Member of TMP30 Dec 2018 6:48 p.m. PST

The Rome series tried to show the 'Roman Relief' rule. Although I read somewhere there was 15 minutes of fighting until the Centurion blew the whistle. At least, they tried.

Wackmole9 Supporting Member of TMP30 Dec 2018 7:18 p.m. PST

Spartacus because it really people not CGI armies

Benvartok30 Dec 2018 7:48 p.m. PST

That scene in the Rome series was so promising….meh. It was a good series but not enough of that action really.

Oh and just reading Goldsworthy's complete Roman army. Each legionary would have need about a metre frontage and around 1.8 back to the guy behind to allow for swinging/fighting or throwing their pilum. So inaccurate scene anyway….

Stone's Alexander film has a great eagle eye shot (literally) of the battle with pike blocks advancing. Good film only spoiled by the hair bleach bottles lying around in every scene with Colin Farrell.

Prince Rupert of the Rhine31 Dec 2018 1:17 a.m. PST

I can't think of one movie makers always like to add over the top amounts of fire, arrow storms, catapults, break formation when they charge and have huge melees where everyone fights as an individual in one to one duels.


Its fine really after all movies are there to entertain not provide an in depth look at military tactics.

Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP31 Dec 2018 8:32 a.m. PST

O. Stone's "Alexander" for the battle of Gaugamela. Both aerial and ground level scenes were great and they at least tried to show the brilliance of A t G's tactical maneuvers to break the Persian Line. Second would be "the 300 Spartans" where they tried to show a hoplite phalanx functioning.

Martin Rapier02 Jan 2019 4:31 a.m. PST

1. Spartacus as mentioned above many times.
2. Some bits of Alexander.
3. Some of the Shieldwall stuff in The Last Kingdom and Vikings (excluding the rather high casualty rate).

Othwerwise, nothing particularly sensible springs to mind.

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