Music Thoughts: Gladiator: Music from the Motion Picture

Gladiator: Music from the Motion Picture was 2000 soundtrack album by Hans Zimmer and Lisa Gerrard for the Gladiator film. Gladiator is one of my favorite movies. The music was a big part of that. Hans Zimmer brilliantly incorporated the main theme “The Battle” subtly throughout the movie. Even at the end of the movie, it never got boring. Every time he reused the theme he made just enough modifications to keep it familiar yet interesting. Besides the main theme, the movie had a number of other beautiful pieces, such as “Earth”, “Am I Not Merciful?”, and “Now We Are Free”.

I was a little disappointed two of my favorites pieces of music heard in the film were not on the album. The first was the music playing during Maximus’ escape from execution and rush to save his family near the beginning of the film. The second missing music was a very short one when the fictional Roman province of Zucchabar was introduced. They both had exciting tracks, but weren’t included here. I found out later a second soundtrack was released for Gladiator, but it didn’t have these tracks either. I was able to hear them from people on YouTube that had posted the music directly from the DVD music tracks, but to my knowledge, they have never been released.

To this day, the Gladiator soundtrack is still my favorite soundtrack of all the movies I’ve ever seen. This seems to be the case for others as well. It got great reviews from critics and sold extremely well. This album was one of the most popular movie soundtracks ever released, right up there with the Titanic soundtrack. A big reason was that the soundtrack followed the same order as the movie. Listening to it was like watching the whole movie over again, only in my mind. The only bad thing was that the music could be pretty sad towards the end. The movie was a tragedy after all, and the soundtrack reflected that.

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