Nothing Matters 

Democracy, Nihilism and 300: Rise of an Empire

300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE “Hey. We’re looking for the Magic Mike 2 auditions?”

300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE “Hey. We’re looking for the Magic Mike 2 auditions?”

LET'S DISPENSE with the pretense straight away: I've got only 300 words to spend on 300: Rise of an Empire, and as we can surely agree, the film is an impenetrable fortress of garbage that would render a nuanced critique futile, so I'm not going to bother. The truth is, 300: Rise of an Empire is not so much a movie as a two-hour trigger warning: a meticulous orgy of three-dimensional, dispassionate digital gore; a thinly veiled neo-fascist agenda; and a particularly weird and gratuitous hate-fucking sequence soundtracked by a thunderous orchestra of concert bass drums. Basically, there's just way too much going on in 3002 to waste any time fucking around with subjective valuation.

With a sequence of events strangely encircling those of the first 300, Rise of an Empire courageously commits itself to the Speed principle of sequel-making: (1) Replace your leading man (Gerard Butler, seen here only in muted footage, presumably left over from the previous film), and (2) throw the whole thing onto a boat. Otherwise it's more or less the same deal as its obscenely successful predecessor: casting still favors abs over acting ability, it's still a homoerotic nightmare of blood and glory, and it's still pretty racist (maybe slightly less racist?). Also, I have the sinking suspicion that the movie might actually be about 45 minutes long were you to run all of the excessive slow-mo in real time.

The thing is, though? When a stone-chiseled warrioress frenches the decapitated head of her freshly sword-slain enemy IN THE FIRST ACT, how can any of this possibly matter? This isn't even a movie. It's a feature-length 3D parlor trick—each sequence ruled by physics-defying carnage, perspective-forcing digital dust particles, and a ballet of overzealous lens flare to really drive home that "500 years Before Christ" period piece look. Again, none of this matters. Nothing matters. 

300: Rise of an Empire 3D
Rated R · 103 minutes · 2014
Official Site: www.300themovie.com/index.html
Director: Noam Murro
Producer: Gianni Nunnari, Mark Canton, Zack Snyder, Deborah Snyder, Bernie Goldmann, Thomas Tull, Frank Miller, Stephen Jones and Jon Jashni
Cast: Sullivan Stapleton, Eva Green, Lena Headey, Hans Matheson, Callan Mulvey, David Wenham, Rodrigo Santoro, Jack O'Connell, Andrew Tiernan, Igal Naor, Andrew Pleavin, Peter Mensah, Ben Turner, Ashraf Barhom and Christopher Sciueref
300: Rise of an Empire IMAX 3D
Rated R · 103 minutes · 2014
Official Site: www.300themovie.com/index.html
Director: Noam Murro
Producer: Gianni Nunnari, Mark Canton, Zack Snyder, Deborah Snyder, Bernie Goldmann, Thomas Tull, Frank Miller, Stephen Jones and Jon Jashni
Cast: Sullivan Stapleton, Eva Green, Lena Headey, Hans Matheson, Callan Mulvey, David Wenham, Rodrigo Santoro, Jack O'Connell, Andrew Tiernan, Igal Naor, Andrew Pleavin, Peter Mensah, Ben Turner, Ashraf Barhom and Christopher Sciueref
300: Rise of an Empire
Rated R · 103 minutes · 2014
Official Site: www.300themovie.com/index.html
Director: Noam Murro
Producer: Gianni Nunnari, Mark Canton, Zack Snyder, Deborah Snyder, Bernie Goldmann, Thomas Tull, Frank Miller, Stephen Jones and Jon Jashni
Cast: Sullivan Stapleton, Eva Green, Lena Headey, Hans Matheson, Callan Mulvey, David Wenham, Rodrigo Santoro, Jack O'Connell, Andrew Tiernan, Igal Naor, Andrew Pleavin, Peter Mensah, Ben Turner, Ashraf Barhom and Christopher Sciueref

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