- Rated: Not Rated
- Run Time: 1 hours, 34 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: November 13, 2001
- Originally Released: 1986
- Label: Saturn Productions
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Single Side - Dual Layer
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Drunk drivers beware--two vigilantes--one good, one bad--are loose on the roads of Los Angeles in this made-for-TV action thriller from director Abel Ferrara (BAD LIEUTENANT). When his younger brother is killed by the Skull, the driver of a mysterious black car that's been ramming drivers off the road, mechanic Rick Benton (Ken Wahl) outfits his pick-up truck with armor plates and a harpoon gun, then hits the streets on a one-man crusade. Dubbing himself the Gladiator, he searches nightly for the black car, running any drunk drivers off the road in the process. A police inspector (Robert Culp) admits he can do nothing to catch the Skull, but also considers the Gladiator a menace. Rick later falls in love with Susan Neville (Nancy Allen), whose radio talk show focuses on the Gladiator's exploits. Eventually issues of right, wrong, and the dangers of taking the law into one's own hands rise to cloud Rick's conscience--but not before a final showdown of steel-crunching destruction. Aired at a time when the outrage at drunk driving was big headlines, the social commentary of THE GLADIATOR provides insight into the media's own vigilantism, as well as delivering solid car-crash thrills.
Los Angeles, a city which lives by the automobile, has begun to die by it. A homicidal maniac, the Skull, has been terrorizing the city, killing motorists at random with his death car. But when Rick's little brother is killed, Rick becomes part Guardian Angel, part crusader, and part warrior with one thing on his mind--revenge.
- Filmed in Los Angeles.
- THE GLADIATOR was the pilot for an unrealized TV series.