300: Rise of an Empire (2014) – Movie Review

The words spoken in the trailer by King Xerxes perched precariously atop his Health and Safety test-failed balcony provide the perfect plot summary for this action-packed sequel. Adopting an ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ approach, this second installment in the 300 franchise chooses to throw what story line there was from the first film completely out the window, and focus entirely on the things that its target audience are really interested in: blood, boobs and stylized gore. Did I mention there was blood?

Not that this is all bad though. Going into the movie it must be said that I wasn’t expecting much in terms of a deep and engaging flick, but was more there for the big screen experience of 3D guts being splattered against the camera lens, essentially what the trailer was implying. And I got exactly what I expected.

Don’t bother trying to analyse this film on too many levels as its technically a pretty awful film. But if insane stylized wars are your scene then you’re in for a treat. I can honestly say that there wasn’t really a dull moment in this film, and with character testosterone levels set to maximum (both visually and mentally), the wars themselves (of which I believe there are about five in total? – so many I lost count) proved almost better than part one.

In conclusion, if you’re a fan of clever, inventive and well-acted films, then this may not be your cup of tea. On the other hand, if you’re a Zack Snyder fan who wasn’t a fan of the first 300 because there wasn’t enough ground and pound, then bring popcorn and soda, fasten your seat belt and enjoy the ride.

7 out of 10 stars



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