Tuesday, March 18, 2014

300: Rise of an Empire - Movie Review

Starring Sullivan Stapleton, Eva Green, Lena Headey, Rodrigo Santoro, Hans Matheson, David Wenham and Callan Mulvey.
Directed by Noam Murro.


This is a prequel and sequel all in one. In fact the majority of the action takes place during the same time as the events in the first 300 movie. We get a couple shots of Gerard Butler's face but otherwise the movie dances around not having their main star from Part 1.

Part 2 revolves around Themistocles, an Athenian who wants to unite Greece against the Persian invasion. He's played by Sullivan Stapleton, an Australian actor best known (if he's known at all) as one of the leads on Cinemax's series Strike Back. He doesn't have the same wattage as Butler.

Rodrigo Santoro is back as the 8-foot-tall god-king Xerxes, but since he has to be gone most of this movie dealing with the events of the other one, his army is led by Artemisia, played with unbridled gusto by Eva Green (Dark Shadows). Indeed, this movie would have been much harder to sit through if it wasn't for her.

The "story" is slimmer this time around, the gore just as splashy and cartoonish, the substance is at zero. There are a couple points where Themistocles gives a troops-rousing speech and I felt a little embarrassed. How many troops-rousing speeches have been committed to film over the years? Hundreds, and most of them were better than these.

I hope the eventual 300: Fall of an Empire is a musical.

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