Sunday, March 16, 2014

3OO: Seize Your Glory! In Slow motion...

The Spartans are BACK! Except they are not. What was a promise for more of Sparta has become an abridged version of all the good parts of the Battle of Salamis, one of the most decisive battles in Greek history. Think about it...the Persians are at your doorstep with a massive invading army, three-four times the size of yours, threatening your democracy. You must rally your Greek countrymen to sacrifice fathers, brothers and sons for freedom, but the probability of victory is low. You take command of the ships you have and brace yourself for the blood and terror of war, knowing every command you make, is yours to take to the grave. Good or bad. For glory or defeat. For every Greek man and woman who depends on you. This is your moment.

This is the point where you wish you had better life insurance...
This was the problem General Themistocles faced during a challenging time in history and yes it was beautifully done on the screen in battle form as every man gazed on that even the lowly Greek sculptors and farmers STILL had better abs than them. But instead of historical accuracies, this movie took on a lot of creative license to spice up the legend left behind. Because we all know that this is a piece of history, passed down through stories, scrutinized by historians and then turned into a Frank Miller novel to sell for twenty dollars a piece.

What this movie succeeds at, it equally fails. The first 300 movie commanded a unique design in film making...slo-mo the hell out of everything with epic music while beating the shit out of Persians. The slo-mo technique was popularized by the Matrix and abused by Zack Snyder years later, further strengthening our anti-muslim sentiments. Because we all know there is not one dude in that army that was actually Greek on screen. So its basically America battling the spooky evil Jihads in Greek drama form.

First impressions:

The movie is epic, exciting and makes a great commercial for wanting to go back to the gym to get in better shape to kill Persians [funny how that works]. But that was all it was good for. As far as storyline goes, it was fairly truncated and only glazed over the Battle of Marathon and quickly ended before we even got a chance to see the defeat of the Persian navy. I also was a little nerved that I was promised Spartan abs and only got dinky Greek abs and ugly Greek men cowering in corners. Ah democracy, it makes men soft. That is, until our bold hero, Themistocles slaps them straight and urges Greece to fight. Although I was happy to see Lena Headey reprise her role as the amazingly awesome Queen Gorgo of Sparta.

This is a cool scene, but who jumps like this except ballerinas?

The graphics were very mood inducing and impressive as usual. There are a lot of great set up shots and beautiful landscaping. As far as grandiose comic imagery, this film had it all.

However the one big problem was the fake blood. There was a shit ton of fake blood everywhere. Got scratched by a sword...FAKE BLOOD GUSH. Got cut on the arm? MORE FAKE BLOOD. Got your skull cracked into by a sword? SUPER FAKE BLOOD EXPLOSION! It almost became comical after a while. So yeah I get are killing people, but isn't the fake blood just a bit out of control here?


It was all right, there were some scenes that were unnecessary and gosh, the narration annoyed me all the way til the end. Sometimes narration will come out of no where and epically ruin the mood. For example, at the end of the movie there is a stand off between Themistocles and Artemesia [the Greek naval commander of the Persian navy], and then out of no where...LETS START NARRATING! The tension was dropped immediately for invasive story telling and therefore a very intense scene between the two becomes a buzz kill. Although I did like seeing there was more back story this time. We get to see the back story of Xerxes [barely] and Artemesia [equally as bare..but it was neat either way]. I am curious why they chose to tell both of their stories and not the story of Themistocles, our hero of the movie.


By far, the best thing about the movie. The soundtrack is very good and I will definitely pick it up for my work out regiment. Its got a great epic feel to it mixed in with an Arabic flair. Worth keeping it for story writing as well. I'm about to get swol!

She's not only a dick to slaves, she's also a dick to apples.

The acting was well done, no complaints there. The main hero, Themistocles is fairly unknown Aussie compared to the rest of the cast, but still a fairly good actor. Of course all of the acting was dramatic because this is a considerably dramatic film. Even though I wasn't impressed look wise for Artemisia, her skills in being evil was definitely well suited in how she was played. Eva Green made an impressive display as the ruthless Greek Commander of the Persian Navy.

Best lines in the Film:

"Don't lose sight of them!" - General Persian Dude after...they instantly lose sight of the Greek ships through the fog.

"You fight harder than you f***." - Artemisia to Themistocles after he punches her in the face.

The Battle of Bad Film Making and Random Thoughts:

I notice a lot of bad stuff in my day, but its amazing how much random shit goes on in the background and foreground of this movie that throws you out of the story.

1. That random dude that dies in the background - Themistocles rushes to the boat of his arch enemy, Artemesia, fighting and stabbing everyone in his path. As far as we know only him and Artemesia stand alive on the ship after he happy stabs everyone to death. Then while Themistocles is speaking, you see a random Persian dude on the left just die and drop in the water. Was that suicide? I think it was.

2. The 'Skyrim Horse' Film Bombs the Movie - Has anyone played Skyrim? A random horse appears out of no where, so you steal said horse and run away like the asshole you are until you get off the horse. You walk away for a second to go pick some berries, or fight a dragon or some shit and when you come back, THE MOTHER EFFER IS GONE!! Yeaaaah...that is what basically happens in the film. Themistocles is fighting on one of his ships, a horse appears out of no where. He gets on the horse, rides it through fire, water, and onto another boat and gets thrown off the horse. Then the horse disappears. WHERE THE HELL DID THE HORSE COME FROM? Where did it go?! And why was there a single horse on the ship? I don't think horses like water or fire...or jumping from ship to ship. Seriously, that's the most bad ass horse in history and now its gone. You screwed up should have kept that one.

My pants are magical, let me show you how they disappear!
3. The Abnormally Long Sex Session - Personally, I never liked sex scenes in movies, but most of them have a point. This one was just grossly long for no reason. It was meant to be more of a power play struggle between Artemisia and Themistocles, but it seriously was pointless. She didn't convince him and he didn't even finish on her. So I'm not sure what the point of either of that was. Also....when the hell did his pants come off? He takes off his cloak and....pants instantly disappear. And personally...if some dude said no to my offer, I wouldn't have taken a sword to his throat and kicked him off my boat. I would have chopped his wang off and tossed him over into the sea. The fact that she let him go was totally counter-productive to her goals of winning against the Greeks.

4. Apple of Evil - Why does every evil person eat a freaken apple in their scenes? What is it with apples that just are so appealing to bad people? They eat it so douchy like too. Like...I'm not going to bite into the apple, I'm going to carve pieces off of it and eat it piece by piece like a dirt bag. Who eats apples like that? Screw you and your stupid apple eating habits! And where the heck do they grow apples in Persia?

5. The Gigantic Moon - There is a scene where the moon was HUGE. Like that shit was about to crash into the earth huge. What planet are they on?? And do they realize they have more catastrophic problems with having a moon that close to the earth than their petty, hissy fit fighting? I mean, I know its a beautiful scene and that was what it was there for, but holy crap.

Man panties, big and proud.
6. Xerxes Transformation - I tell you what... Xerxes was a handsome dude before he became the freakishly tall, throat gurgling, hairless creep we all know today. I'm not sure why he became weird after his time in the desert, but not only did he shave all of his hair off [including his eyebrows...who the hell shaves their eyebrows?], he got taller, his voice got deeper, and he became very brave to wear a large golden man diaper that looks like a chastity belt. So why such a dramatic change to become the God King? Couldn't he be as convincing keeping his eyebrows? Come on know better.

7. Who is cutting the wheat in Sparta? - Seriously...I really want to know! If everyone is training to kill shit, who is taking care of the lawn?

8. Hairless Bodies - I know they are hairless because they want to define the abs and muscles and yadda yadda yadda, but you are telling me there isn't a man in Greece that hasn't got a Persian rug? REALLY? Not according to all the hairy statesmen I saw in that movie.

9. Little to No Armor - OK. I know the whole point of the movie is to show how the gym can work for everyone, but seriously, hoplites did not have such little armor during that time. They had body armor that worked. I was genuinely surprised more Greek men didn't die compared to the Persian army that had full body armor. Lets be realistic here...soft pudgy vs fully armored dude. Who is going to win here?

10. Head Armor does not grant you God Mode - Twice I saw some one strike Themistocles on the head, one with an arrow and another a sword. He brushes it off like its a scratch. I don't care how bad ass you are, that shit would hurt like hell even with armor.

Don't you know who I am? I'm the Juggernaut, bitch!
11. Taking off the Helmet - I know the movie wants people to recognize the main characters in the story, but holy shit..everyone just takes off their helmet at the worst possible time. Yeah lets keep it on for the surprise cliff drop into the boat, but take it off while there are 5O Persians trying to run up and kill me. That makes sense. Can never be too safe.

12. The Explosion of Themistocles Boat - That TOTALLY should have killed him! That blasted right in his face. He should have been marred in the face...deaf, maybe blind and most of all dead, dead, double dead. What a crock of shit.

13. Mutant Animals - Xerxes has to be experimenting with animals...that super buff black panther is totally creepy. Am I watching the Hunger Games? President Snow, is that you?

14. Super Women Oppression - Damn...this movie had a rabid case of women oppression. Except Queen Gorgo...because she will stab your cock with her sword if you betray her.

Here they come to save the DAAAAYYY!
15. Themistocles Blue Cloak - In the beginning of the film, the narrator stated Themistocles was a generally unknown soldier. Which probably isn't true in actuality, but if it was, why did he still have the blue cloak? Most of the Athenians did not have blue cloaks, which meant to me only special people received it. Or...the producers wanted something to easily distinguish him from the crowd, but still...seriously..what was the significance?

16. Slicing Someone's Skull - You need a heavy blade to cleave through a man's skull. This happens twice in the film and the second time was less believable when we witness a thinner, lighter blade butcher through the top of a man's skull. I know I am being picky at this point, but seriously, that should have never happened.

17. can wait... - People sure take a LONG time to die in this film. King Darius..makes it all the way back to his home country before he dies. The kid's father gets brought back to shore with 3 arrow wounds, lasts long enough to see his son, have a chat and drop dead. Even Artemesia takes her time to die in the end. There must be something in the I right?

18. Sparta! Now 15% Recycled - Seriously...15% of this film was recycled from the first one. I want 15% of my money back.

19. Similar Slogans - "PREPARE FOR GLORY!" - 300. "SEIZE YOUR GLORY!" - 300: Rise of an Empire. Gee...what will the marketing wizards come up with next?

20. Dead People Everywhere - When Xerxes transformed, Artemisia starts killing the shit out of every dude close to him in the palace. I mean, seriously, it was a bad day if you were best buds with the King. How does Xerxes not notice this? A bunch of random people that were close to him suddenly disappear? Really? You just didn't notice everyone that was close to you was dead all of a sudden? I can imagine the conversation now:

Xerxes: Wheres Jalalabob? 

Artemisia: Uh...hes busy. 

Xerxes: What can he possibly be busy with? I haven't seen him for weeks.

Artemisia: Well you know...stuff. Like throwing himself into the sea and drowning...or crocheting with his wife.

Xerxes: Oh, well then what about Muhammatt?

Artemisia: Hes busy too.

Xerxes: Man, is everyone busy around here? What the hell happened?

Artemisia: War. sir?

Xerxes: Oh right. War. 

Ma'am...this story is way too long. We just want to hit things.
20. The Spartans Save the Day - In the beginning, Queen Gorgo tells a story and at the end you realize she is telling it to her Spartan soldiers on their ships. So how long have they been standing there waiting to fight? Then after all that Greek struggling, the Spartans show up last minute and save the day. Thanks Spartans...thanks for showing up at the end. Assholes. Not you Lena Headey... you are still totally awesome. *female crush*

To wrap up this ever expanding list of odd complaints, I have to say that if you are looking for simple good entertainment value and motivation to run those three miles to the gym, get swol and run back, this is your film. If you are looking for something seriously deep, please save your money. Was it fun? Oh yes. It was both fun and hilarious to watch. Not the year's masterpiece, but definitely a good theater film in general. So if you are ready for your new gym plan....GO SEE 300: Rise of an Empire!

So what did you think of the film 300: Rise of an Empire? Tell me your thoughts below!

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DnD Rating: 5/10

After Credits?: Nope. Just leave. The credit song is also God awful. Blah.

1 comment:

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