Movie Review: ‘300’

By Grayce Turnbach
March 22, 2007

Warner Bros. Pictures

A sold-out crowd packed in tightly at the Marple AMC theatre anxiously awaited “300.” Sounds of people munching on popcorn, straws scraping up against the plastic floppy lids of soda cups and quiet whispers were the sounds before the movie came onto the big screen.

Thunder rolled and gray clouds filled the screen as the movie began. A voice in the background started to speak and tell the story of Spartan boys’ journey to become Spartan men.

The story of the boy in training was narrated and illustrated in a few scenes to get across the idea of how vigorous and intense their training is. They took us from the growing up process to present day Sparta with King Leonidas who is played by Gerard Butler.

If and when a king desires to go to war, he must consult the oracle and the ephors. The ephors are the priests of the gods or as referred to in the movie “more creature than human.” The oracle is the most beautiful girl of Sparta. She’s forced to stay up in the mountains with the ephors which, is why they refer to her beauty as more of a curse than a gift.

The story begins to unravel when a Persian messenger and his followers visit Leonidas in regards to Sparta bowing down to Xerxes, the Persian god/king.

Leonidas only had 300 men to go to war with him. The Spartans were fearless – the number didn’t matter. Not to mention, extremely strong, built men. Saying that the soldiers had rock hard abs would be an understatement. Along the way some of the Spartans notice that someone was following them. It turns out to be Ephialtes, a hunch-backed monster who wants to help fight.

The Spartans huddled in a narrow straight and prepared themselves for the first wave of soldiers which, was no match for the Spartans. A sea of arrows were shot over them and brought the term “fighting in the shade” a whole new meaning.

If you have a weak stomach, I wouldn’t suggest you go see this movie. It isn’t extremely gory, but fighting scenes were intense. Blood was splattered across the screen, body parts were dismembered by swords and thrusts of spears into men’s bodies were a common thing to see.

Finally, an appearance of Xerxes is made. He is played by Rodrigo Santoro and appears as an extremely tall, bald-headed, dark-toned man. His body is covered in chains; he has a piercing on the side of his face and his voice is deep, almost sounding like a computer-generated voice.

Personally, I found him to be one creepy man. Funny thing is that he didn’t come off to be this all-powerful being. When he made his appearance a sea of laughter came over the audience. It was highly entertaining.

Ephilaltes, the hunchback found his way to Xerxes and informed him of a hidden path to the Spartans in return for all the wealth, money and women he wanted.

The Persians surrounded the Spartans and gave Leonidas one last chance to bow to him.

One by one, the Spartans fell to their defeat. Last was the king. He took his last breath and whispered the words “My love” and seconds after a sea of arrows came down upon him and his 300 men.

Blood shed and a tale of courage and heart is just the beginning as to what you’ll experience from this movie. . The gore wasn’t the purpose of this movie; it was the tale of 300 men having the courage to fight against millions of Persians without fear and any hesitation.

I enjoyed the movie, maybe just as much as I enjoyed staring at the actor’s rock hard abs. It’s a must see, you will not be disappointed. I give it two thumbs up!

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Grayce Turnbach

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