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"Madness? This is SPARTA!"

 - Brian

NOTE: Excuse me for grammatical/spelling errors -- I'm really tired and don't feel like checking for errors.

Yesterday, I had the privilege of seeing "300" with some friends.

BEST. MOVIE. EVER. Okay, so it certainly wasn't the best movie ever, but it was definitely the manliest. Seriously, this whole movie was powered solely by testosterone. It was awesome.

So here's a very brief review:
Review Key: Plot = overall premise; Awesomeness = explosions, blood, manliness; Eye Candy = "special" effects, babes, etc; Lingering Impressions = frame of mind after seeing film

PLOT: Big guys with big weapons fighting big enemies. If that isn't enough incentive to see the movie, then I don't want else to tell you. Basically, the entire movie is loosely based off the Battle of Thermopylae. However, I've been told it's very accurate to Frank Miller's graphic novel, if that makes any difference. My point is that this movie will thoroughly piss off ANY historian who happens to see it out of curiosity. Basically, everything in this movie is completely OVER-THE-TOP. That means 10,000 Spartans are 10,000,000 Spartans, the Persians are portrayed as sub-human orc-beings, and everybody contains 20x more quarts of blood than in reality. Those of you who see movies for the (*gasp*) plot should be forewarned: The overall premise of this movie is painfully simple. If you're like me and don't particularly take any interest in how complex and coherent a plot is, "300" shouldn't bother you at all.

Awesomeness: First off, everyone in this movie is ripped (not excluding women and children). The Spartans are rockin' 12-pack abs, red capes, loincloths, and pikes. No, "300" doesn't contain any homoerotic overtones; on the contrary, their uber-masculinity was intended to emphasize how powerful and glorious the Spartans were in contrast to their effeminate adversaries. In regards to sheer, unadulterated awesomeness, this movie takes the cake. Watching thousands of arrows cast a shadow on 300 men prior to pelting their shields is just plain awesome. To give you better feel for how awesome this movie was, picture this: A 40-foot wall consisting entirely of Persian corpses literally topples over and smashes a handful of ninjas. Yes, it's that awesome. Oh, and by the way, there are explosions. ;)

Eye Candy: Yes, "300" is pure eye candy. This movie offers an amazing visual experience, superior to LOTR. The dim, grainy visual style of the movie never gets old, and gives "300" a unique personality. In addition to the unique visual style, the camera effects were impressive. The battle scenes transitioned from slow-mo to normal-motion seamlessly. Although gory, "300's" violence is highly stylized and isn't realistic in the least bit. To my surprise, the entire movie was filmed in front of a bluescreen. With the exception of a few obviously computer-generated beasts, the movie didn't go overboard on the CGI, and everything looked very realistic. It also has babes and about 2-minutes of nudity for those of you who honestly care.

Lingering Impressions: After walking out of the theater, I felt like squeezing out a couple dozen pushups and a couple hundred situps. I also felt like brutally bludgeoning a few Persians (or anyone else who was in close proximity to me), but I don't feel the need to elaborate on that. All in all, I'd gladly see the movie again. It's the type of movie you definitely want to see on the Big Screen, for sure. Following the movie, I've been entertaining thoughts on what it would be like if America was as militaristic as ancient Sparta was. Awesome. Also, I just now realized that the majority of the movie was filmed in slow-motion, which probably accounts for its length.

Anyway, I give this movie a 20 out of 10. No, I'm not mathematically challenged, this movie just rocked.


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