Up 32,094 this week

Challenge of the Gladiator (1965)
"Il gladiatore che sfidò l'impero" (original title)

Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 4.4/10 from 35 users  
Reviews: 3 user

Treacherous Roman senator Lucius Quintilius plans a secret journey into Thrace to recover a legendary treasure. He is accompanied by his daughter Livia posing as a Christian slave girl, his... See full summary »


0Check in

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb at Comic-Con 2014

Follow our coverage of Comic-Con 2014, direct from San Diego July 23-27 in our Comic-Con section.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

list image
a list of 27 titles
created 03 May 2012
list image
a list of 518 titles
created 19 Dec 2012
a list of 166 titles
created 1 week ago

Related Items

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Challenge of the Gladiator (1965)

Challenge of the Gladiator (1965) on IMDb 4.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Challenge of the Gladiator.

User Polls


1 video »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Adventure | Comedy | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.8/10 X  

The story of Spartacus and 10 other gladiators who rebelled against the bloody coliseum sports. They escape and are faced at every turn by Roman soldiers bent on taking them back to the ... See full summary »

Director: Nick Nostro
Stars: Dan Vadis, Helga Liné, Ivano Staccioli
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

Hercules helps the Polish army against a massive Mongol horde.

Director: Domenico Paolella
Stars: Mark Forest, José Greci, Ken Clark
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  

Local beach-goers find that their beach has been taken over by a businessman training a stable of body builders.

Director: William Asher
Stars: Frankie Avalon, Annette Funicello, Luciana Paluzzi
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

A warrior protecting a slave girl, who is really a princess, winds up as a gladiator in the Roman arenas.

Director: Mario Costa
Stars: Gordon Scott, Wandisa Guida, Roberto Risso


Credited cast:
Spartacus (as Rock Stevens)
Massimo Serato ...
Senator Lucio Quintilio
Livio Lorenzon ...
Gloria Milland ...
Piero Lulli ...
Consul Metello
Walter Barnes ...
Andrea Checchi
Dario Michaelis
Franco Ressel
Bruno Scipioni
Giulio Tomei
Giovanni Petrucci
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
John Bartha ...
Roman Messenger
Salvatore Borghese ...
Jeff Cameron ...


Treacherous Roman senator Lucius Quintilius plans a secret journey into Thrace to recover a legendary treasure. He is accompanied by his daughter Livia posing as a Christian slave girl, his cruel henchman Commodio, and Terenzius, an ex-gladiator and Nero look-alike who fools the local Thracians into believing he is the real Emperor. But Lucius's plans are thwarted by Spartacus and his band of rebels who succeed in capturing the treasure for Thrace. When news arrives from Rome that the real Nero has died, local Roman governor Consul Metellus joins forces with Spartacus to defeat the traitors. Written by Jim Marshall

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis





Release Date:

4 April 1965 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Challenge of the Gladiator  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Peter Lupus shaved his chest for this movie, giving his torso the smooth, oily, suntanned look popularized by Steve Reeves in his "Hercules" roles. (Lupus's naturally-hairy chest can be seen on display in his centerfold photos in the August 1974 issue of 'Playgirl' magazine.) See more »


Consul Metello: You never win victories with brute force alone. You also have to have a brain.
Spartacus: You don't believe I have one.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

CHALLENGE OF THE GLADIATOR (Domenico Paolella, 1965) *1/2
20 August 2008 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

The peplum genre has always been one of the most erratic branches of the "Euro-Cult" style; for every gem, there's a score of average efforts and even a handful of turkeys – and this is clearly one of the latter species!

The narrative throws in historical figures – the hero is called Spartacus and the villain Nero (albeit an imposter who makes the Emperor seem mentally-challenged as opposed to mad!) – who, historically, never actually 'got together', so to speak; they just make easy identification points for the audience, I guess! The muscular lead is one Rock Stevens(!) – whom I'd recently watched in MUSCLE BEACH PARTY (1964): the stage name itself suits that empty-headed ambiance somewhat better but his performance comes across as wooden under any circumstances; for what it's worth, this was Stevens' fourth and final outing of the sword-and-sandal variety.

The heroine is as bland as her male counterpart – irritatingly, she has a tendency to shriek when wishing to attract Spartacus' attention (incidentally, she's made up to be a femme fatale for much of the duration but, characteristically, it's such a clumsily-handled twist as to utterly lack conviction and, ultimately, merely serves to notch another fiasco in the film). The villain, then, is played by a regular in this type of low-brow fare – Massimo Serato – who's visibly bored throughout; as for Livio Lorenzon, his imposing bald-headed acolyte, he was much more in his element in the Spaghetti Western Texas, ADIOS (1966) which, coincidentally, followed this viewing. What's worse, for being Roman nobility, both Serato and the 'Nero' impersonator are bafflingly made to lust all through the film for some hidden treasure belonging to Spartacus' people!!

Amusingly, the film unwittingly makes a perceptive statement about the whole 'muscle-man epic' fad in which the heroes more readily display brawn than brain throughout – because, at one point here, after explaining the situation to Spartacus, the heroine instinctively asks him "Are you sure you understood?"; similarly, as if the audience were expected to be asking itself just what form of challenge did the gladiator hero put forth to the Empire, the elders of his community are made to blatantly state the fact when Spartacus accepts to face Nero in a duel inside the proverbial arena!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Challenge of the Gladiator (1965) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: