Warner Brothers Pictures and Legendary’s “300: Rise of an Empire” was based from Frank Miller’s graphic novel “Xerxes.” The film was directed by Noam Murro. Its cast members include Sullivan Stapleton (Themistocles), Rodrigo Santoro (Xerxes), Lena Headey (Queen Gorgo) and Eva Green (Artemisia). Read on for the “300: Rise of an Empire” movie review and a brief synopsis of the film.
“300: Rise of an Empire” Film Synopsis:
While the brave 300 were led by their king, Leonidas (Gerard Butler), another battle was happening in the sea. It was the Athenians led by the mighty Themistocles who killed Darius against the Persian navy led by the cunning Artemisia. Artemisia was a Greek. However, her family was raped and killed by her fellowmen, and she was sold as a slave. She was left to die in the streets when a Persian man found her, helped her, and trained her to become a warrior. She impressed King Darius with her skills, bravery and loyalty, thus appointing her as the navy commander. As the saying goes, Greeks can only be killed by the gods. So when Darius died, she wooed Xerxes into going to the desert and finding the hermit’s cave, where he would be bathed and be borne as a god-king. While Xerxes was away from the kingdom, Artemisia killed everyone who was loyal to him. When he returned, he declared war against the Greeks.
Themistocles was informed of Leonidas’ death through the hunchback traitor who brought his sword. He told the hunchback to tell Xerxes to meet him at the Battle of Salamis. Then Themistocles brought the sword to Queen Gorgo and asked for Spartan’s help for they were losing the battle against Artemisia’s naval army. Queen Gorgo refused, stating that Spartan had enough of the war.
Meanwhile, Xerxes, while watching Athens burn, was informed of Themistocles’ challenge. Artemisia, surprised that Themistocles was still alive, tried to convince Xerxes to fight. However, Xerxes declined. Artemisia went on her way, defying Xerxes’ orders.
Artemisia and her army was defeated as the Spartans, led by Queen Gorgo, came in the aid of the Athenians, thus uniting Greece.
“300: Rise of an Empire” Movie Review:
Even if the film has good execution, it did not win the hearts of Rotten Tomatoes’ top critics. The film rated on 43%, but 65% of moviegoers liked it.
For Newark-Star Ledger’s Stephen Whitty, the movie has too much grinding of teeth and disparagement of history. There was also much “anachronistic use of gunpowder, until we plug our ears and desperately pray to the gods of Olympus, or the brothers of Warner, that they might make an end,” wrote Whitty in his article in NJ.com.
James Rocchi of Film.com expressed his view on the bloody film. “Long on crimson spurts of blood but low on character, larded with production value but bereft of any other kind of it, “300: Rise of an Empire’ is a 3D joke,” said Rocchi in the Film.com report.
And that’s it for the “300: Rise of an Empire” movie review. Stay tuned for more reviews here on Movie News Guide (MNG).