SPARTACUS (Lightbox) – Of the three 70mm films I’ve seen at the TIFF Lightbox, this one was the one I knew most of the story – beyond even the standard “I AM SPARTACUS” scene toward the end. I don’t find it to be an overly moralistic film; maybe a bit na´ve in the way films like this were at the time. I would have been interested in how different this would have been had Kubrick had script control.
The evil and powerful Roman senators are, of course, atheists…
Sempronius Gracchus: Let’s make an old-fashioned sacrifice for Glabrus’ success.
Julius Caesar: I thought you had reservations about the gods.
Sempronius Gracchus: Privately I believe in none of them. Neither do you. Publicly I believe in them all.
The film also wasn’t short on bizarre homo-eroticism… Sure, it reads a bit unusual, but the wink-wink and the fact it’s in a bath house while one of them is oiling up the other? Yeah…
Marcus Licinius Crassus: Do you eat oysters?
Marcus Licinius Crassus: Do you eat snails?
Marcus Licinius Crassus: Do you consider the eating of oysters to be moral and the eating of snails to be immoral?