Film Project Example

spartacus-dvdcover.jpgSTEP #1: RESEARCH QUESTION

A) What is the question I want to answer?

In what ways is the movie SPARTACUS historically accurate and inaccurate?

B) What information do I need in order to do this?

1) Spartacus is born a slave and worked in salt mines

2) Spartacus was sent to a gladiator school and received training in fighting with many different kinds of weapons

3) Spartacus led a slave revolt in the gladiator school

4) Spartacus formed an army of gladiators and slaves

5) the Roman government was split between leaders who supported the patricians and the army and wanted a more powerful government and other leaders who supported the plebiaens and the republic

6) Spartacus made a deal with eastern pirates to rent 500 ships to get the slaves out of Italy

7) Spartacus got weapons, and raised money, by raiding Roman towns and farms

8) the first Roman army sent to fight Spartacus was defeated when he surprised them with a night attack, and Spartacus took only one prisoner, killing most of the Roman soldiers

9) Spartacus fell in love with a slave girl named Lavinia and had a son

10) Some Romans wanted to let the slaves leave Italy because of all the damage they were doing, but others wanted to smash the slave army

11) Spartacus is defeated by three Roman armies in his last battle, even though as usual he fought with tactics the Romans did not expect

12) after the slave army defeat, Spartacus and 6,000 slaves were crucified, but his wife and son escaped.


introductory paragraphs and two sample supporting paragraphs, using the movie SPARTACUS:

Introductory paragraph and thesis statement:

The 1963 movie “Spartacus” portrays a slave revolt against

the Roman Republic in 72 B.C. and the role the revolt had in

pushing Rome on the road to the end of its republican form of

government. It follows the gladiator Spartacus as he is trained

to become a gladiator, leads a revolt, forms and army and,

finally, meets his death after defeat by Roman forces. The film

also details the struggle in the Roman Senate between those

favoring more power for the common people in Rome and

those seeking a more centralized government to protect the

security of Rome. The movie SPARTACUS is historically

accurate in some ways, inaccurate at times, and at

times makes educated guesses.

Supporting paragraph 1:

The movie opens with Spartacus as a young man toiling in

the salt mines of North Africa, a brutal existence. It explains

that he had been born a slave and that his life might have

ended in the salt mines had he not been purchased by the

owner of a gladiator school and transported to Italy to be

trained to fight as a gladiator. In fact, the evidence indicates

that Spartacus had been born a free man, and may

have actually served in the Roman army before, for unknown

reasons, being enslaved and trained as a gladiator. There is no

evidence that he had worked in the salt mines of North Africa.

Supporting paragraph 2:

A considerable amount of time is spent in the film detailing

Spartacus’ training as a gladiator. It shows him being taught

to fight with a variety of weapons, such as the Roman gladius

(short sword) and the trident. Historical research indicates

that the film was quite accurate in this regard, as gladiator

contests were meant to simulate real battles for the

amusement of Roman audiences, and training in several

styles of fighting was part of the process.