Eugene Walwyn Jr.
October 16, 2010
My Hero, Maximus
On the website Dictionary.com, a hero is defined as a man or woman of distinguished courage or ability, admired for his or her brave deeds and noble qualities. Its second definition is a person who, in opinion of others, has heroic qualities or has performed a heroic act and is regarded as a model or ideal. Both definitions are described under the characteristics of Joseph Campbell’s ideals of a hero, which leaves that Maximus of the movie Gladiator to be one of mythology’s greatest heroes.
Maximus is a general of a Roman Army that was highly respected by his soldiers and the Emperor of Rome. Add some point when the emperor is at his end, he leaves Maximus the honor of ruling despite that he has a son (Commodus). Once the emperor’s son gave wind of him not becoming ruler, he kills his father (Emperor of Rome) and claims ruler. Maximus realizes what happened and tries to put a stop to the Commodus. The young emperor is aware that Maximus knows of his treachery and sentenced him and his family to be killed. One of Joseph Campbell’s characteristic of a hero is that the hero embarks on a series of adventures to recover what is lost or to discover some life-giving information.
After Maximus escapes from the Commodus grasp and finds his family slain, he then becomes a slave and embarks on a voyage for survival as a Gladiator. As Maximus fights for his freedom, he realizes that he was still appointed for a better cause and seeks his revenge of his family’s death. After series of battles, Maximus travels to Rome to where he attends Rome’s biggest tournament that is held by the emperor, Commodus. Commodus discovers that Maximus is still alive and tries to have him killed but the respect that Maximus has earned as a general and a gladiator, the task was not simple.
Another aspect of Joseph Campbell’s characteristics is that a hero gives his...