117 Min | Action – Fantasy – History | March 2006
IMDB Rating: 7.8
Director: Zack Snyder
Starring: Gerard Butler, Lena Headey, David Wenham
300 Review: Hearing that 300 is based upon a “graphic novel” which is a pseudo intellectual phrase used to describe a comic book. Sometimes prejudice can get in the way of judging a film of its own merits because 300 is one of the more memorable movie moments from last year and one that seems unforgivably ignored at the more prestigious film award ceremonies. Being based upon a comic book you could say in all honesty that the visuals mirror those of a graphic novel. The battle scenes are entirely different from those seen in LORD OF THE RINGS or KINGDOM OF HEAVEN but are no less impressive and some of the battle sequences, most notably the ones featuring the immortals are terrifying. This film is like a painting come to life? In some sequences it looks like a nightmare come to life and this stylish formalist type of cinema will send a chill down your spine. This is cinema strictly for adults only.
Fans of ancient history and classical studies will find a lot to criticise because it’s not an accurate depiction of ancient Greece but you should always make the legend according to John Ford. Unfortunately by concentrating on the visuals there’s other aspects lacking. The Spartans don’t really come across as real characters from ancient times, more of a crowd of wise cracking macho cyphers and let’s be honest here, with the exception of voice over the dialogue is rather poor. It often reminded me of something present day Scottish folk hero John Smeaton might say “Dinnae come tae Sparta, we’ll set aboot ya up here.”
But despite these very noticeable flaws 300 is a truly memorable movie down to the jaw dropping visuals and it’s the visuals the film will be rightly remembered for. It’s a pity that the Oscar voters have ignored 300 because certainly make up, cinematography, editing and possibly best supporting actor for Andrew Tiernan as Ephialtes should have been nominated at least and this film will be highly regarded in years to come.