Best Roman-Themed Movies to Watch For The Ides of March

Julius caesar stabbed on the ideas of march
Beware the Ides of March. Stay safe at home and watch a movie instead.

Many people associate March 15th, the Ides of March, with the assassination of Julius Caesar…but the Ides of March had been around long before Caesar was bumped off by his friends.

The Romans didn’t number days of the month from the first to the last; instead they counted backwards from three fixed points of the month: the Nones, the Ides, and the Kalends. The Ides occurred near the midpoint on the 13th of some months, but falls on the 15th in the month of March. The Ides of each month was sacred to Jupiter, the Romans’ supreme deity, and notable for the Romans as a deadline for settling debt. So how does this relate to Caesar?

According to Plutarch, a seer named Spurinna had warned Caesar he was in danger that would come no later than the Ides of March. On his way to the Theater of Pompey, he passed the seer and said, “The Ides of March are come,” in a jesting way. The seer responded with, “Aye, Caesar, but not gone!”

As they say, the rest is history. Caesar’s death was a closing event in the period known as the Crisis of the Roman Republic, and triggered the civil war that enabled Caesar’s adopted son, Augustus, to become the first Emperor of the Roman Empire.

Heads up guys: if you think the movie The Ides of March is about Julius Caesar…it’s not. However, if you want to watch a film about the ancient Roman Dictator during the Ides of March as a way to celebrate events from long ago, here’s a few that made my list.

Top Five Films About Julius Caesar and Rome

  1. Cleopatra (1963), starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.
  2. Julius Caesar (1953), starring Marlon Brando and James Mason.
  3. Spartacus (1960), starring Kirk Douglas and Tony Curtis.
  4. Rome (2005 – 2007), starring Kevin McKidd and Ray Stevenson.
  5. Gladiator (2000) – This isn’t about Julius Caesar, but it’s a fantastic film featuring Rome, and is always worth a re-watch. Gladiator landed 29 film awards, including the Oscars for Best Picture, and a Best Actor win for Russel Crowe.  It’s among the IMDb’s Top 250 Films and is also a MUST-SEE RunPee favorite.

All these movies are Oscar winners and spectacular in its own way, but my strongest recommendation is Rome, a 2005 – 2007 mini-series shown on HBO. It has been praised for its historical authenticity, high production values, and simultaneous grit and splendor. The show won 19 awards and was nominated for an additional 36 awards.

Beware the Ides of March,
RunPee Mom

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 10 Films Set in Ireland to Watch on St Patrick’s Day Weekend

far and away ton cruise Niccole kidman
Ireland is only a movie away…

If you’ve never been to Ireland (I have and loved it), then these 10 movies will give you a thirst for Guinness Beer and a craving for corned beef, cabbage and potatoes. Pull out this list for March 17th on St Patrick’s Day, or anytime you get a wistful hankering for the sights and sounds of the old Emerald Isle. (Not listed in any special order, ye lads and lasses).

Angela’s Ashes  (1999)
IMDB score: 7.3

This Oscar nominated movie, filmed in County Cork, Ireland, is based on the best selling autobiography by Frank McCourt, an Irish expat whose family tries against all odds to escape the poverty in the slums of Limerick.

Far and Away (1992)
IMDB score: 6.6

This movie, filmed in Dublin, Ireland, and starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, tells the story of two young people in Ireland who wish to travel to America and take part in the Oklahoma land rush.

The Quiet Man (1952)
IMDB score: 7.8

This two-time Oscar-winner tells the story of a boxer who returns to his place of birth, Ireland, to escape his past. A true classic, The Quiet Man starred John Wayne and Maureen O’Hare, and was directed by John Houston, for which he won a Best Director Oscar. The movie is most notable for the lush photography of the Irish countryside.

Excalibur (1981)
IMDB score: 7.4

Oscar-nominated Excalibur, starring Patrick Stewart, Helen Mirren and Liam Neeson is a bona fide fantasy-action cult classic. Filmed entirely in Ireland, including Derrynane in County Kerry, situated between County Cork and County Limerick. Killarney, the county seat, is one of Ireland’s most famous tourist destinations.

Song of the Sea (2014)
IMDB score: 8.1

Even though this is an animated film, it deserves a place on this list. The movie doesn’t necessarily show us the actual beauty of Ireland, but it lets us feel the spirit embedded in the ancient folklore of the Emerald Isle.

ireland and cliffs of mohar
The Cliffs of Insanity and of Harry Potter

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (2009)
IMDB score: 7.6

As with many other movies, this Harry Potter flick was filmed partially in Ireland, using the ominous Cliffs of Moher as exterior shots of the Horcrux Cave.

Reign of Fire (2002)
IMDB score: 6.2

Reign of Fire, starring Matthew McConaughey and Christian Bale, is a sci-fy film about a brood of fire-breathing dragons who emerge from the earth and begins setting everything on fire, establishing dominance over the planet. The film was filmed entirely in Wicklow Mountains, the largest continuous upland area in the Republic of Ireland.

My Left Foot (1989)
IMDB score: 7.9

This two-time Oscar-winning movie starring Daniel Day-Lewis and Brenda Fricker, both of whom won Oscars for their roles, tells the story of an Irishman, Christie Brown, who was born with cerebral palsy, learns to paint and write with his only controllable limb – his left foot. The movie was filmed in County Wicklow Ireland, the filming site of numerous other films.

The Princess Bride (1987)
IMDB score: 8.1

A real family-favorite, a swashbuckling fantasy-comedy-satire winner, The Princess Bride has been voted as one of the greatest films of all time. The film’s vertigo-inducing Cliffs of Insanity were actually the Cliffs of Moher, one of Ireland’s most visited natural attraction. (Same place as the Horcrux cave in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.)

Leap Year (2010)
IMDB score: 6.5

Amy Adams stars in this charming travel movie about a young American woman travels to Dublin, Ireland to propose to her boyfriend who — by Irish tradition — cannot refuse the proposal. Principal photography took place in County Wicklow, Dublin, County Mayo, and County Galway.

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