A Taste of Russell Crowe

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A Taste of Russell Crowe

Russell Crowe has been called the new Clark Gable, the new James Dean and even the new Marlon Brando. Regardless of which actor he has been compared to, he is certainly busy. One of his most recent roles was as Maximus in this year's "Gladiator." Last year he was nominated for an Oscar for best actor in "The Insider" (1999).

The New Zealand native plays opposite Meg Ryan as a hostage negotiator in "Proof of Life," to be released next month in the United States. Here are some of his films.

Gladiator( 2000 )
Rated R
Directed by Ridley Scott, starring Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix

After a Roman general, Maximus (Crowe), leads his legions to victory, Emperor Marcus Aurelius (Richard Harris) asks the war leader to take over the empire. The emperor's son, Commodus (Phoenix), seizes power, strips Maximus of his rank and orders his death.

Maximus escapes, only to find his family slain. He is then captured and sold into slavery as a gladiator. Commodus returns to Rome and reinstates the gladiator games at the Colosseum. He fashions his nephew as his heir and deals with his widowed sister, Lucilla (Connie Nielsen), with more than brotherly affection. Maximus also returns to Rome to exact revenge. Crowe radiates the same gripping physicality he showed in "L.A. Confidential." But "Gladiator" is noted less for character development than for its fight scenes.

L. .A . Confidential l (1997)

Rated R
Directed by Curtis Hanson, starring Kevin Spacey, Crowe, Guy Pearce, Kim Basinger and Danny DeVito

A twisted plot is only one of the factors that won this film two Academy Awards, for best sup-porting actress, Kim Basinger, and best screenplay (adapted). It received seven other nominations: for best picture, best director, best art direction, best cinematography, best film editing, best original dramatic score and best sound.

Based on a James Ellroy novel, "L.A. Confidential" deals with police corruption, black-mail and murder. Three L.A. policemen, Bud White (Crowe), Ed Exley (Pearce) and Jack Vincennes (Spacey) are drawn into a web of intrigue.

"L.A. Confidential" resonates with a dark touch similar to "Chinatown," the 1974 tribute to detective movies.

Proof (1991)

Rated R
Directed by Jocelyn Moorhouse, starring Crowe, Hugo Weaving and Genevieve Picot Martin (Weaving),

a blind and cynical man, documents his world by taking photos, and he befriends Andy (Crowe) and recruits him to describe the pictures. Martin's housekeeper, Celia (Picot), is hopelessly in love with him and plots her revenge.

Crowe won an Australian Film Institute award for best performance by an actor in a supporting role for "Proof," one of his more gentle characters.


by Joe Yong-hee

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