The rich history of Rome is known to many people, including those who are not very keen on digging into ancient civilizations and their evolution. The mighty empire made significant breakthroughs in many spheres of life, which makes it impossible to neglect its chronicles. However, what is shown in museums and art exhibitions is most commonly the life of rich and noble people. Meanwhile, the empire was created not by them but by poor hardworking individuals whose living conditions were far from being as grand as the traditional tourist attractions depict them.
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Hence, the main point the movie The Hidden History of Rome is trying to make is that the true history of Rome is hidden along with the laymen’s living circumstances. The film covers essential aspects of Pompeii’s and Herculaneum’s existence before the towns were romanized. Also, specific features of Rome’s people’s life are discussed, including society, hygiene, slavery, leisure time, and relationships. The movie is an eye-opener for everyone who has used to consider the Roman legacy represented solely by exquisite architectural, engineering, and legal achievements.
To justify their point, the creators of the film engaged professionals from the spheres of archeology and history who explained the actual state of affairs prevailing in the ancient city and the towns it conquered. The presenter set on an exciting journey through Pompeii and Herculaneum excavation sites. This approach enabled the movie makers to demonstrate the true essence of life in these cities as it pertained to the majority of people.
The viewers can see that apart from grand buildings to which tourists are typically brought by their guides, there used to be tiny apartments where poor individuals lived. The film presenter made a particular emphasis on the vast gap that had existed between the rich and poor. With the help of evidence, he showed the conditions in which the unnamed millions of ordinary craftsmen who actually build Rome had used to live. These people never made it to the history books, but their lives were much more worth investigating than those that are usually demonstrated in museums.
The excavation sites shown in the movie are numerous and versatile. One can see the buildings in which poor people used to live, the streets they walked, and the burial places in which they found their last rest. The presenter and his interviewees reconstructed and discussed fascinating traditions, such as preparing food, bathing, and looking for a job. To make a contrast, the film creators also depicted typical activities or wealthy Romans, such as attending horse races, courting, and building social hierarchies.
Due to the proficiency of the historians and archeologists helping the presenter to recreate ancient life, the film makes a clear point about the vast gulf between the rich and poor. The evidence becomes even more effective due to the good-humored nature of the main speaker and his ability to make the description of data amusing.
The Hidden History of Rome is a successful effort to explain whom Rome was really built by and who should receive the credit in history books. It may be more pleasant to look at beautiful temples and aqueducts on an excursion, but it is necessary to pay tribute not to those who lived in luxury but to those who created it. The reliable evidence and engaging presentation of the material make the movie valuable not only as a historical source but also as a means of entertainment.
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