300: Rise of an Empire
Director Noam Murro
Language English
Opens Now showing

This may be little more than trashy B-movie material, but at least it’s not the hideous war-on-terror propaganda film that the first “300” was, which had Spartans — warriors from a fascist state built on the back of mass slavery — yammering on about “freedom” and “democracy” and slaughtering Persians who looked like orcs.

The sequel involves general Themistocles (Sullivan Stapleton) attempting to hold off a Persian naval invasion against vast odds. Opposing him is Artemisia, a traitorous Greek amazon — played wonderfully by Eva Green, who hams it up with “Death to you, scum!” glares. It’s not surprising that an Israeli director (Noam Murro) was eager to helm this Persian-slaughter fantasy. Murro emulates the comic-book look of Zack Snyder’s original well enough, with endless freeze-frame shots of swords arcing and blood spattering all over the screen. Ripped male torsos seem to be the main selling point, though, and the homoeroticism is so thick that when one warrior yells “Ram it!” you might forget he’s talking about naval combat.

For a chance to win one of five “300: Rise of an Empire” T-shirts, visit http://jtimes.jp/film.

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