March 14, 2014

What Could Make 300: Rise of an Empire Better

300: Rise of an Empire was unimpressive to say the least. Riding off the success of the first 300, Rise of an Empire makes an effort at the cool stylized violence and cinematography, but ultimately creates boredom by repeating the same process over and over. What could make 300: Rise of an Empire better?


1.  The Story

This story was an epic ... failure. Along with most of the other faults, the story didn't push the envelope and wow me. It was mediocre at best and piggy-backed off the success of the previous film. The story was all over the place, first giving us a long back story of the hero Themistocles, and the soon-to-be God-King Xerxes. The creators try to sympathize with Xerxes, but I don't care. I don't need to sympathize. I liked him when he believed he was a God-King. I don't need to see the human side of him. The story jumps to the present where Themistocles decides to use his fleet against the Persian fleet approaching Greece. He runs around looking for more ships and fails. Next, we have another back story, this time regarding the villain Artemisia. After that, there's a bunch of battles that pretty much look the same. The back stories throw you off and are unnecessary. Take out the origins of Xerxes and Artemisia and we'll be dandy. 

What is with the scenes going back to the original 300? We see Leonidas and his men arrive at Thermopylae, then Leonidas and his men dead. These are the most unnecessary scenes in film history. We already know what happened, we don't need inter-cutting scenes showing us that Leonidas is about to fight a war. Just take all this out and we'll be going in a better direction. Plus, the movie will be like thirty minutes shorter.

2.  Set Design

The set design was boring. There was no epic feeling in it. The ships were small. The beach where the Greeks rested was minimal and uninteresting. Xerxes's temple was the same usual temples audiences see in every other classical film. Come on! This is a fictional account of the second Greek-Persian war. They over-glamorized the men, culture, and warfare, but they couldn't over-glamorize the architecture. Really? Out of all the shit you decided to over-glamorize, you didn't do it to the buildings?

3. The Sex Scene 

Destroy it from existence. As much as I love Eva Green's breasts, was the whole thing necessary? Technically the whole film wasn't necessary, but this was the most unnecessary thing about it. It took place on Artemisia's ship during the battle with Themistocles and Artemisia. I can't explain the stupidity that went behind this scene to create it. I can only imagine there were writers sitting around being bored and decided that they wanted to see Green's breasts. It didn't even try to be creative or stylistic like the sex scene with Lena Heady and Gerard Butler in the original. Again, take it out. Now five minutes of the film is cut out.

4. Take Out the Other Crap

The only difference between this film and the original, is the amount of slow motion scenes there were. Every battle had a slow motion scene. Every scene that wasn't a battle sequence, had slow motion. Then, there were buckets of blood being spewed at the screen. The cinematography was beautifully imitated, plagiarized, forged (pick one) from the original film. The battles were dull, the dialogue was stale, the characters were flat. You can't really save this film from all of those mistakes, but you can help out the slow motion. Take out the slow motion scenes or just make very long slow motion scenes. I'm talking about three minute long slow motion sequences where we just see a soldier running and yelling in slo-mo. The sex scene would have been a little better if it was all slow motion. That would be useless, but interesting. With all the slow motion sequences out, there goes another thirty minutes. All-in-all, this film would be a good 30-40 minutes. I'd rather watch that then what I saw.

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