Lucilla: Please be quiet, brother! Your constant scheming gives me even more
of a headache!
Lucilla: What did my father want with you?
Maximus: To wish me well before I leave for home.
Lucilla: You're lying, I could always tell when you were lying because you were
never any good at it.
Maximus: I never acquired your comfort with it.
Lucilla: True, but then you never had to, life is more simple for a soldier. Or
do you think me heartless?
Maximus: I think you have a talent for survival.
Quintus: Maximus, please be careful, that wasn't prudent.
Maximus: Prudent? The Emperor has been slain.
Maximus: [to Proximo] He killed the man who set you free.
Maximus: Roma Ignis
Juba: And now we are Free.
Commodus: [to Maximus] They tell me that your boy squealed like a girl, when
they nailed him to the cross. And that your wife moaned like a whore, when they
ravished her. Again. And again.
Commodus: And again.
Gracchus: And after you glorious coup, what then? You take you five thousand
Maximus: Yes I will leave. The soldiers will stay here for your protection,
under the guidance of the Senate.
Gracchus: So, after Rome's all yours you just give it back to the people. Tell
Maximus: Because that was a dying man's last wish. I will kill Commodus. The
fate of Rome, I leave to you.
Gracchus: Marcus Aurelius trusted you. His daughter trusts you. I will trust
you. Give me two days, and I will purchase your freedom. And you, stay alive,
while I'll be dead.
Gracchus: I don't pretend to be a man of the people. But I do try to be a man
for the people.
Commodus: You wrote to me once, listing the four chief virtues. Wisdom, Justice,
Fortitude and Temperance. As I read the list i knew i had none of them. But i
have other virtues, father. Ambition, that can be a virtue when it drives us to
excel. Resourcefulness. Courage. Perhaps not on the battlefield but there are
many forms of courage. Devotion, to my family, to you. But none of my virtues
were on your list. Even then, it was as if you didn't want me for your son.
Marcus Aurelius: Oh Commodus, you go too far.
Commodus: I searched the faces of the gods for ways to please you, to make you
proud. One kind word, one full hug while you pressed me to your chest and held
me tight, would've been like the sun on my heart for a thousand years. What is
in me that you hate so much?
Marcus Aurelius: Shh, Commodus.
Commodus: All I've ever wanted was to live up to you. Ceasar. Father.
Maximus: Do you find it difficult to do your duty?
Cicero: Sometimes I do what I want to do. The rest of the time, I do what I have
Commodus: Your Emperor asks for your loyalty, Maximus. Take my hand, I only
offer it once.
Gracchus: He enters Rome like a conquering hero. But what has he conquered?
Falco: Give him time, Gracchus. He's young, he may do very well.
Gracchus: For Rome, Falco? Or for you?
Lucilla: Today I saw a slave become more powerful than the Emperor of Rome.
[To his dead friend]
Juba: I will see you again... but not yet. Not yet!
Commodus: The general who became a slave. The slave who became a gladiator. The
gladiator who defied an emperor. Striking story! But now, the people want to
know how the story ends. Only a famous death will do. And what could be more
glorious than to challenge the Emperor himself in the great arena?
Maximus: You would fight me?
Commodus: Why not? Do you think I am afraid?
Maximus: I think you've been afraid all your life.
Lucilla: I want to help you.
Maximus: Yes, you can help me... Forget you ever knew me, and never come back
Maximus: I knew a man once who said, "Death smiles at us all. All a man can
do is smile back."
Commodus: I wonder, did your friend smile at his own death?
Maximus: You must know. He was your father.
Commodus: You loved my father, I know. But so did I. That makes us brothers,
doesn't it? Smile for me now, brother.
Maximus: At my signal, unleash hell.
[Watching Lucius sleep]
Commodus: He sleeps so well because he is loved.
Maximus: What we do in life echoes in eternity.
Maximus: I am required to kill, so I kill. That is enough.
Proximo: That's enough for the provinces, but not enough for Rome.
[after swiftly dispatching another gladiator]
Maximus: Are you not entertained? Are you not entertained? Is this not why you
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.
Maximus: My name is Gladiator
Quintus: People should know when they are conquered.
Maximus: Would you, Quintus? Would I?
Marcus Aurelius: When was the last time you were home?
Maximus: Two years, two hundred and sixty-four days and this morning.
Lucius Verus: Are you the one they call the Spaniard?
Lucius Verus: They said you were a giant. They said you could crush a man's
skull with one hand.
Maximus: A man's? No. A boy's?
Maximus: Five thousand of my men are out there in the freezing mud. Three
thousand of them are bloodied and cleaved. Two thousand will never leave this
place. I will not believe they fought and died for nothing.
Marcus Aurelius: There was a dream that was Rome. You could only whisper it.
Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish, it was so fragile.
Maximus: Ancestors, I ask you for your guidance. Blessed mother, come to me with
the Gods' desire for my future. Blessed father, watch over my wife and son with
a ready sword. Whisper to them that I live only to hold them again, for all else
is dust and air. Ancestors, I honor you and will try to live with the dignity
that you have taught me.
Maximus: I may die here in this cell or in the arena tomorrrow. What possible
difference can I make?
Gracchus: He will bring them death, and they will love him for it.
Gracchus: Fear and wonder, a powerful combination.
Falco: You really think people are going to be seduced by that?
Gracchus: I think he knows what Rome is. Rome is the mob. Conger magic for them
and they'll be distracted. Take away their freedom and still they'll war. The
beating heart of Rome is not the marble of the senate, it's the sand of the
coliseum. He'll bring them death and they will love him for it.
Gracchus: But the Senate IS the people, sire. Chosen from AMONG the people. To
speak FOR the people.
Commodus: I doubt if any of the people eat so well as you, Gracchus. Or have
such splendid mistresses, Gaius.
Maximus: Strength and honor.
Commodus: It vexes me. I'm terribly vexed.
[addressing his troops]
Maximus: If you find yourself alone, riding through green fields with the sun on
your face, do not be troubled, for you are in Elysium, and are already dead.
Titus: We who are about to die salute you.
Proximo: Those giraffes you sold me, they won't mate. They just walk around,
eating, and not mating. You sold me... queer giraffes. I want my money back.
Proximo: Listen to me. Learn from me. I was not the best because I killed
quickly. I was the best because the crowd loved me. Win the crowd and you will
win your freedom.
Maximus: You risk too much.
Lucilla: I have much to pay for.
Maximus: You have nothing to pay for.
Marcus Aurelius: Let us pretend that you are a loving daughter, and I am a good
Lucilla: This is a pleasant fiction, is it not?
Maximus: Are you in danger of becoming a good man, Proximo?
Lucilla: My brother hates all the world and you most of all.
Maximus: Because your father chose me.
Lucilla: No. Because my father loved you. And because I loved you.
Proximo: [addressing his new recruits] I am Proximo! I shall be closer to you
for the next few days, which will be the last of your miserable lives, than that
bitch of a mother who first brought you screaming into this world! I did not pay
good money for your company. I paid it so that I might profit from your death.
And just as your mother was there at your beginning, I shall be there at your
end. And when you die -- and die you shall -- your transition will be to the
[claps his hands]
Proximo: Gladiators... I salute you.
[Looking at some slaves]
Proximo: Can any of them fight? I've got a match coming up.
Slave Trader: Some are good for fighting, others for dying. You need both, I
Proximo: [holding up a sword] Thrust this into another man's flesh, and they
will applaud and love you for that. You may even begin to love them.
Proximo: Some of you are thinking that you won't fight. Others, that you can't
fight. They all say that.
Proximo: In the end, we're all dead men. Sadly, we cannot choose how, or when.
But what we can choose is how we decide to meet that end, so we are remembered
forever as men.
Commodus: I think I understand my own people.
Gracchus: Then perhaps Caeser will be so good as to teach us, out of his own
Commodus: I call it love, Gracchus. The people are my children, I am their
father. I shall hold them to my bosom and embrace them tightly--
Gracchus: Have you ever embraced someone dying of plague, sire?
Commodus: No, but if you interrupt me again, I assure you that you will.
[Upon seeing the Coliseum for the first time.]
Juba: I didn't know men could build such things.
Lucilla: Is Rome worth one good man's life? We believed it once. Make us believe
it again. He was a soldier of Rome. Honor him.
Proximo: We mortals are but shadows and dust.
Gracchus: The beating heart of Rome is not the marble of the Senate. It is the
sand of the Colosseum.
Marcus Aurelius: You have proven your valor once again, Maximus. Let us hope for
the last time.
Maximus: There is no one left to fight, sire.
Marcus Aurelius: There is always someone left to fight. How can I reward Rome's
Maximus: Let me go home.
Marcus Aurelius: Ah, home.
Marcus Aurelius: Won't you accept this great honor that I have offered you?
Maximus: With all my heart, no.
Marcus Aurelius: Maximus, that is why it must be you.
Juba: You have a great name. He must kill your name before he kills you.
Maximus: Marcus Aurelius had a dream that was Rome, Proximo. This is not it.
This is not it!
Proximo: So Spaniard, we shall go to Rome together and have bloody adventures.
And the great whore will suckle us until we are fat and happy and can suckle no
more. And then, when enough men have died, perhaps you will have your freedom.
Commodus: You and I are not much different. You take life when you have to, as I
Maximus: I have only one more life to take. Then it is done.
Commodus: [to Falco] Lucius will stay with me now. And if his mother so much as
looks at me in a manner that displeases me, he will die. If she decides to be
noble and takes her own life, he will die.
Commodus: And as for you, you will love me as I loved you. You will provide me
with an heir of pure blood, so that Commodus and his progeny will rule for a
thousand years. Am I not merciful?
[Lucilla turns her head]
Commodus: AM I NOT MERCIFUL?
Commodus: If you're very good, tomorrow night I'll tell you the story of emperor
Claudius who was betrayed by those closest to him, by his own blood. They
whispered in dark corners and went out late at night and conspired and conspired
but the emperor Claudius knew they were up to something. He knew they were busy
little bees. And one night he sat down with one of them and he looked at her and
he said, "Tell me what you've been doing busy little bee or I shall strike
down those dearest to you. You shall watch as I bathe in their blood." And
the emperor was heartbroken. The little bee had wounded him more deeply than
anyone else could ever have done. And what do you think happened then, Lucius?
Lucius Verus: I don't know, uncle.
Commodus: The little bee told him everything.
Gracchus: The beating heart of Rome is not the marble of the Senate, it's the
sand of the Colosseum. He'll bring them death and they will love him for it.
[After the final duel]
Maximus: Quintus! Release my men. There was a dream that was Rome. It shall be
realized. These are the wishes of Marcus Aurelius.