300 – (in theater) Not exactly a factual representation of the battle of Thermopylae in 480 BC when 300 Spartans, led by King Leonidas, faced down a horde of Persians (about a quarter million warriors) after some 7000 Greek soldiers fled the battle; the three-day standoff ended in utter defeat but caused King Xerxes such heavy losses and inspired the other Greeks to fight that the Greeks eventually won their victory. No subtleties here. Based on Frank Miller’s graphic novel, almost literally lifted from the page to the screen, the movie is CGI – cartoonish gory illustrations, choreographed grisly impalings, video violence (jerky pause and thrust of lances then penetrating fictional flesh).
The movie begins with an exposition on how Spartan children are raised to be selfless warriors from birth (infants with imperfections are tossed off a cliff). Yet these are the “good guys” who proclaim themselves committed to justice and liberty – Giuliani Republicans. Some eroticism follows involving a nearly nude oracle dancer (actually filmed underwater) and a love scene between Leonidas (Gerard Butler) and his queen Gorgo (Lena Headey). Then comes all the gutting of bare-chested males in skimpy leather briefs. At the conclusion of the gory battle, after two Judases have betrayed Leonidas’s warriors, an image alludes to Christ’s and St Sebastian’s crucifixions. If you want more of this type of movie production, see Robert Rodriguez’s Sin City (also adapted from a Frank Miller graphic novel) and Kerry Conan’s Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.
Click here for links to places to buy or rent this movie in video and/or DVD format, or to buy the soundtrack, posters, books, even used videos, games, electronics and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.