I sat packed in the front corner of a theater last night with no popcorn, no candy, no soda; surrounded by excited teenage males, eager to see boobs and blood. My neck was arched and my body contorted in positions I didn’t know were possible just to watch a distorted view of the new movie, 300. My eyes rolled around like a steer before the slaughter as I waited for the movie to start…but previews first. Whoop-dee-doo. They were so-so…well…the Spider Man III trailer did rock my world but still didn’t drive away my discomfort.
The screen goes black.
I shift uncomfortably and moan.
The the title splatters across the screen in large, bloody letters. The theater squeals with delight, yet I sigh in my irritation at not having arrived sooner. I’m going to have the movie spoiled by my discomfort, I thought. And then the movie started and my mind was sucked away to ancient Sparta.
The movie was stunning visually, the artistry of the cinematography was truly amazing even at my front-of-the-theater vantage point. During combat scenes (and there are a lot of them), the stop-and-go effects of thrusts, bashes, blood flow, and gore really added a lot to the movie. Having not read the 300 comic I’ve nothing to compare the movie to, however, the story seemed solid…primary vocals from the characters on screen were battle cries and very eloquent “bravery” speeches, however, the movie was heavily narrated giving the viewers the feel they were watching a story rather than just a movie. Very well done.
Effects were sweet, although I have some issues with the various views presented in the scene where Xerxes and Leonidas parley. From the beginning of that scene, we see that Xerxes towers comically huge over Leonidas, yet the camera views during their conversation changed that perception. Darby O’Gill and the Little People did a better job of this effect.
And that was my only real complaint.
So good was the movie that my discomfort and irritation at my position within the theater dissolved into nothingness. One thing was quite funny about that theater room, however. The movie showed plenty of breasts and a very brief, non-graphic sex scene…As I mentioned before, I was surrounded by teenagers. That became readily obvious any time a boob flashed on screen as a ripple of snickers and jibes swept across the room. That was more humorous that annoying…was I ever that way?
I will definitely be seeing this movie again. When next I see the movie, I’ll make sure to secure a better position within the theater so I can experience the full effect in all its glory. If you have a chance to see this movie in the theater…do so. You won’t be disappointed.
For a little background on the movie, here’s some info pulled from Wikipedia:
The film is a close adaptation of the graphic novel 300 by Frank Miller in which Spartan King Leonidas (Gerard Butler) and 300 Spartans fight to the last man against Persian King Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro) and his massive army of one million soldiers. Facing insurmountable odds, the Spartans’ sacrifice inspires all of Greece to unite against the Persian invaders. The story is loosely based on the Battle of Thermopylae which took place in 480 BC.
I want to read the Graphic Novel now. :) I sure hope the other comic book/hero movies coming out this year are as good! This month is Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Then of course, Spider Man III and Transformers!