The movie 'Gladiator' did an accurate job of depicting actual events of the time. However, there were a few things that probably didn’t occur the way in which the movie had presented the events. Most movie recreations attempt to make the events as real and accurate as possible.
Facts vs. Reality
The movie Gladiator essentially depicts the reign of Emperor Commodus:
1. Commodus became the emperor after his father’s death.
2. The film tells the story of the reign of Commodus.
3. It’s unlikely that Commodus died 13 years after becoming the emperor. Therefore, Commodus probably lived between 3-5 years after his father's death.
Commodus Enjoyed Being Emperor
Commodus enjoyed being a recognizable and somewhat powerful figure. However, he probably never envisioned that he’d ultimately be killed within such a short period of time. It’s a known fact that Commodus enjoyed combat very much. This is basically what he lived for throughout his reign.
Commodus Hobbies & Interests
1. The movie does point out that Commodus was somewhat fascinated with beast hunting.
2. Chariot racing was another pastime for the Emperor.
3. Commodus enjoyed combat most of all. The emperor Commodus was known for his skills in combat.
It may not be accurate that Commodus had 620 victories while in Gladiatorial Combat. The number 620 may not be accurate but merely a number that was chosen as reference for the film. There’s no true way in which to verify this number. Therefore, we’re only left to guess how many victories the Emperor Commodus did in fact have.
Family Life of Commodus
The Emperor Commodus did have a sister named Lucilla who eventually married Pompeianus and had a son. However, Lucilla didn’t like her brother and did plot many times to actually kill her own brother.
Lucilla’s husband eventually became Co-Emperor called Marcus. After a lifetime of betrayal and self-gratification, Lucilla and her husband were executed. This event took place probably within 15 years after the blood assassination of Lucilla’s brother Commodus.
Finally, this movie did accurately depict several real life events as they happened at the time. However, certain dates and the general time-frame of actual occurrences may be inaccurate.