Full disclosure, I was late to the 300 game. As a matter of fact, I didn’t even see it till a few days ago. Rise of an Empire ups the game a bit but also is missing some of the spark that made 300 so epic. This go around Zach Snyder wrote and produced while Noam Murro directs. Returning to this epic world is Lena Headey as Queen Gorgo of Sparta, and Rodrigo Santoro as the God King Xerxes. New comers include Sullivan Stapleton as our lead warrior Themistocles, and Eva Green as very vicious Artemisia.
300 Rise of an Empire! The much anticipated sequel to Zach Snyder’s 2007 300! The story is unique in the fact that it’s not necessarily a true sequel, the beginning of the film is a prequel, the middle of the film takes place the same time as 300 is, and the final act takes place after 300 ends. Our story follows Themistocles the Athenian warrior as he leads his troops through a battle to unite all of Greece against the Persian Empire. Standing against him is the viciously evil Artemisia, Commander of the Persian Navy. Based on Frank Miller’s graphic novel “Xerxes” Rise of an Empire focuses more on the Athenian Army, while great warriors in their own way they lack the raw badassness that we got with the Spartans in 300. They aren’t out to die defending their country, they’d rather live, which does give you a more personal connection to the characters. However other than Themistocles and Artemisia there isn’t much background or character development.
300 changed the game when it came to visual effects in film, and Rise of an Empire is definitely on par. Visually stunning and graphic as all hell, Rise of an Empire ups the ante. The gore is even more over the top, which sometimes can be a bad thing in film, but works well in the 300 universe. There are times that you can notice the green screen, and the think to yourself, why can I see that there’s a green screen on this multi-million dollar production???? But moments later someone’s head is chopped off and you are back into the film. Now I’m not one for 3D film. When giving the choice I choose to stay away from the 3d, and see the traditional 2D. However I was forced to see the IMAX 3D version of Rise of an Empire and I will say that if you opting for the 3D viewing of the film, IMAX is the way to go. All though you can be taken out of the film by the large amount of 3D ash flying around ALL movie long, it’s still pretty stunning.
All in all, 300 Rise of an Empire is a badass film. Not the Oscar winning film my buddy Bluem thinks it was, but still a fun film to watch. I gave is Jeebus score of 3.6 with a .4 bonus for a topless Eva Green(yes topless, amazing scene) for a total score of 4, A Good time at the Theater!