If director Ridley Scott
is like a painter behind the camera, then Russell Crowe
is his muse in front of it. The two have worked together on five films including Robin Hood
, which opens in theaters this weekend. Before you check out the origin story of everyone’s favorite archer, here are four other Russell-Ridley movies worth revisiting.
Gladiator: Do you like old gladiator movies? In this 2000 action-packed epic, Crowe plays Maximus, a gladiator who becomes more powerful than the evil emperor of Rome by winning the crowd at the Coliseum. Gladiator won the Oscar for Best Picture and four other categories, including a Best Actor trophy for Crowe. Maybe the Academy thought this gorgeously shot, compelling historical drama directed itself since Scott was snubbed for Best Director. The extended version of the film is available on both DVD and Blu-ray.
Body of Lies: Leonardo DiCaprio plays a CIA operative keeping watch on a safe house in Jordan believed to be harboring terrorists while Crowe plays his control who monitors DiCaprio via satellite and intelligence from the other side of the world. This is more DiCaprio’s movie than Crowe’s, but Crowe makes his Ed Hoffman character so calmly smug that you want to punch your TV. Body of Lies is available on both DVD and Blu-ray.
American Gangster: Denzel Washington’s Frank Lucas forms an alliance with the New York mafia and becomes the king importer of heroin into Harlem while Crowe plays Richie Roberts, an honest cop who heads up a narcotics task force that seeks to smoke out the dealer kingpins. The bloodier unrated extended version is available on both DVD and Blu-ray.
A Good Year: Sit back with a glass of wine and savor the softer side of R&R with this beautifully shot romantic comedy. Crowe plays Max Skinner, a London banker who inherits a chateau and vineyard in Provence, France, where he spent part of his childhood. He visits with the intent to sell, but he falls in love with the scenery, including a local café owner played by Marion Cotillard. This uncharacteristic sidestep away from violence and action for R&R is only available on DVD.