300: A Bunch of Actors No One Knows Hacking Each Other Up with Swords

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Tonight, the hubs and I went to see 300, the movie adaptation of the graphic novel by Frank Miller (Sin City). The title refers to 300 Spartans led into battle against a much more formidable Persian army (The Battle of Thermopylae, 480 B.C.) by King Leonidas of Sparta.

I wish I could do this review justice, but truth is I watched much of it with my hands over my eyes. My husband and I take turns choosing the movies and this movie was his pick. He was so happy. I am such a good wife.

The ticketers checked my ID before I was allowed to purchase tickets, and I chalked that up to the fact that it's so gory they want to make sure no underage kids see it (although there were some idiot parents in the theater with their tweens).

The ultra-violent battle scenes dragged on and on. There was the stabbing and the hacking and the hail of arrows. There were the requisite beheadings and slashings where blood flew out of wounds in slow-motion.

When regular old soldiers weren't intimidating enough, the movie makers brought out stampeding rhinos and charging elephants. I sensed the audience was tiring of all the violence. In fact, even though the audience was loaded with teenage boys, the only yelps and cheers happened in a non-battle scene when Queen Gorgo (a badass in her own right) takes swordly matters into her own hands.

The cast consisted of a bunch of unknown actors (as far as the average movie goer is concerned), and that made it boooring for me to watch. I mean, I hated Troy, too, but at least there was Eric Bana and Orlando Bloom to provide some eye candy.

The movie was shot in a high-contrast, grainy style, where the actors looked like they were sprung from the pages of a comic book. The entire movie was dark and moody, and the only vibrant colors were blood and the red of the Spartan cloaks.

If you are a fan of Frank Miller and his graphic novels you'll probably love the movie. I read that the director was very true to the novel and matched it frame-for-frame. Me? I was just happy the movie was less than two hours and there was popcorn. My pick next time.

300, directed by Zack Snyder. Rated R.


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