Ultra slow motion shots, fantastically choreographed stunt sequences and those oil painted frames with silver and gold tint are some unique features of the 300 franchise. The second instalment in this series, titled 300: the rise of an empire has certainly included all these visual beauties in a pretty enhanced manner , but forgot to add that passion and pride which made us all scream like a Spartan. With some breathtaking stunts and fairly cool tactics in the storyline the movie is enjoyable even though it is not a match for its predecessor.
The sequel here is actually happening as a parallel war as Leonidas was fighting against Xerxes with his 300 men. In this second episode we get to know the reason why the Persians want to destroy Greece and the man who was responsible for all this, Themistocles is the central protagonist. A revenge seeking Xerxes along with his naval commander Artemisia decides to attack the Greek and Themistocles decides to stop them with his limited resources. How it all ends up with Sparta deciding not to offer anymore help is what this bloodshed movie narrating in the second chance.
More than its technical uniqueness, there was this sort of patriotism in the Spartans which made 300 a special story. And also Gerard Butler’s really captivating performance as a powerful king also worked big time for the movie. When it comes to 300: The Rise of an Empire, you will surely miss that presence of a controlling force. But they have somewhat compensated that gap of a powerful character in the form of this female antagonist , Artemisia. The first half of the runtime has some impeccable stunts choreographed, captured and sliced very effectively with some really impressive background scores. But the progresses after that couldn’t really create any surreal wave in my heart and it was all too tactical rather than this so called war for glory.
On screen, Sullivan Stapleton wasn’t that great as Themistocles. The actor was able to show the acrobatics of a great warrior (of course with the help of visual effects) but wasn’t convincing as an inspiring leader. Even though she was on the negative side, Eva Green was really impressive. The attitude and the anger the character demanded was really there in her performance. Good performances from the rest of the cast.
Direction from Noam Murro follows the similar pattern that Zack Snyder created but there was a slight decrease in the usage of slow motions. The screenplay co written by Snyder introduces the flash back and the main protagonists in an intriguing manner but as I said fails to include that aggression that comes out of pride. Dialogues are good but only a very few were worth remembering. Cinematography is really good. The chorography, edits and the visual effects have done a phenomenal effort to sustain that 300 stamp of making. The level of brutality is too much that you might not even feel scared if you happen to see any brutal murder just outside the theatre (rightly A certified).
So, 300: The Rise of an Empire is not a bad film in terms of overall quality. If there was a more captivating take on the Themistocles, things would have been as good as 300. My rating is 3/5 for this stunning oil painting.
Green: Recommended Content
Orange: The In-Between Ones
Red: Not Recommended