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300 Film review


Description : Exploring the Hollywood film 300 in fine detail.
Move over big budget films. New generation filmmaking has arrived. One King and 300 men with a sword, shield and a six pack each, have the audience swooning around the world. This is a script that was turned down by every major Hollywood studio and independent production house. It was thought to lack strength in script and also had a mediocre star cast.

300 is based on Frank Miller’s graphic novel of the same name. The story revolves around King Leonidas of Sparta, the ancient Greek city, who picked 300 elite warriors from his army to defend the city-state against Persian invasion led by King Xerxes, who continues his father’s ambition of conquering Greece. King Leonidas with his 300 men guard the passage of Thermopylae, the only way to reach Greece by land. While Leonidas refuses to bow down to Xerxes and become governor under his rule, his loyal wife Queen Gorgo pleads with the council to send the entire army to Leonidas’s aid. A traitor, Efialtes, shifts camp to Xerxes and shows him the secret passage where the Spartans hide, and with this brings down the legacy of the brave King and his 300 men.

Hats off to Zack Snyder for breaking rules in filmmaking. The film is minus large obnoxious sets for historical backgrounds, loud jewellery for the queen, gold cups and court entertainers with flashy costumes. Only one scene with some of these elements is used, but not to bring on lavishness to the film, but to emphasise on the character of Xerxes, his arrogance and thoughts of invincibility.

Gerard Butler easily steals the show with his potrayal of a brave king, as the lead character in 300, full of passion and love for his land, not to forget his rich vocals. His authority evokes not jealousy but love among his men. King Xerxes is menacing and would put the gothics to shame, with his snazzy get-up.

The film 300, was shot in 60 days, completely in studios with blue matte backdrops, not because they did not have anything to shoot, but because the director knew exactly what he wanted and the team was well prepared. A lot of time was spent on post-production, and Zack Snyder was busy revolutionizing filmmaking of the 21st century by making special effects his hero of the film. What would one give to be part of this technical wizard.

You can feel the pulsating sound in every nerve of your body. The visuals are stunning and classic cinematoraphy by Larry Fong plays a big role in enriching the screenplay.Despite the gore and crudity, stunt choreography is mind blowing. Each move has been master minded and very very well crafted. Some critics have extensively debated about the historical elements of the film. However they fail to remember that this film is not about Persian and Greek history, it’s about one inspiring man’s passion for his land and people who is willing to shed his blood to defend it.

With no superstars in this film, this is major breakthrough for Warner Bros. Studios. All the actors live up to the expectations, but again the visual effects is the hero of the film. Queen Gorgo’s potrayal of a bold and passionate woman is inspiring and refreshing. The production designer has worked extremely hard to create a realistic look, because it is effects versus real sets from the first shot of the film to the last. He has done a commendable job with his use of dark colours to create a somber mood to match the screenplay.
Above all, Zack Snyder has passionately been able to direct each scene within closed walls, without any feel to the script on a real location. A true filmmaker will truly understand how difficult it would have been to just emotionally visualize the scene imaginatively and bring out everyone’s best. Please also note, he has narrated a piece of 400 B.C history in a studio. Three cheers to the director’s exotic imagination and visuals.

Made on a budget of 60 million USD (small amount for a Hollywood studio and historical story), this film has collected a whopping 200 million USD and odd in the United States alone, and still collecting worldwide, which means this is a box office record. Add another several millions to world wide collections.

By Swarupa Pillaai
Copyright 2007
Published: 2007-05-25
Author: Swarupa Pillaai

About the author or the publisher
I am a freelance writer,who has just completeed a screenplay for an independent production company in the US.I also work on ahort news articles related to entertainment,especially movie reviews.

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