The Last Gladiators
The Last Gladiators (2013)

Academy Award (R) Winning Director Alex Gibney examines the NHL's most feared enforcers while also exploring the career of Chris Nilan. (c) Official FB

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Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: February 1, 2013
DVD Release Date: March 12, 2013
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Critic Score: 91% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune

The opening sections of this film play like a greatest-hits clip collection, but when Gibney delves deeper into Nilan's personality, it's a magnetic portrait of a rinkside Raging Bull.

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Nicolas Rapold
New York Times

Pretty or not, the stories of dropped gloves and smashed faces shed some clarity on the game's violence ...

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Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Even if you're not a hockey fan, Nilan is a modest and insightful guy.

Nick Schager
Village Voice

Gibney celebrates hockey's fisticuff traditions while also recognizing how such brutality ultimately takes its greatest toll on those who perpetrate it.

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Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News

At his best, Gibney focuses on his subject and then explodes it outward. But with "The Last Gladiators," he's taken a rare misstep. There is undoubtedly a great story within the bruised history of NHL enforcers. Why, though, did he choose Chris Nilan's?

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Brian Orndorf

Reflecting the sweep of aggression that swallowed the game throughout the 20th century, Gibney tackles his points smartly, laboring to communicate the thrill of combat and the shock of retirement.

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Farran Smith Nehme
New York Post

Gibney deserves credit for making a hockey film that the uninitiated can watch with interest, and for focusing on an issue even some hockey fans can't make up their minds about.

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Sara Maria Vizcarrondo
Movies With Butter

In a way, this doc is Bully, grown up, and from the bully's perspective.

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Christopher Campbell
Film School Rejects

Gibney, always a master of the documentary interview, gives us another captivating talking head in Chris Nilan.

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More reviews for The Last Gladiators

Flixster Audience Score: 81% Flixster User Reviews
Walter M.
"The Last Gladiators" is a documentary that seeks to explore the careers and lives of various enforcers in the NHL while carefully walking the line… More