Tonight we dine in Hell; get a table for 300

I finally watched it and I know you are dying for me to tell you all about those guys with the massive abs (I have these too, just a bit bigger). The movie was good fun if one let historic and presentation stuff slide. A couple of the visuals were great. Now let me bombard you with my views.

“What are we fighting for?”
First of all my main concern is what the movie would make of the Spartan war machine. Nazi propaganda and war lovers tried to cite them as their glorious, bloodthirsty forerunners. The point is that Spartan prowess served freedom, with emphasis on serve. The killing of messengers, cruelty for its own sake and the “we’ve been exchanging civilisations all day” playing after Huntington’s self-realised prophecy is as far from Spartan spirit as could be. I was glad the movie mentioned freedom as the ideal of the war (7x) though it had clearly a back seat in the presentation, except perhaps in the end.

“Dude, Sparta is totally voting for Bush”
Nope. The Spartan training system empowered the simple citizens, reducing the power the aristocrats held till then and making Sparta the freest Greek city up to the Solon/Cleisthenes Law Systems in Athens, which were a democratic step forward. The battle of Thermopylae is considered a landmark because of its symbolism; free people choosing to die for an ideal against the odds. Otherwise it’s yet another battle.

“300 heroes? Nope, more”
A modest sized army of the Greek city-states who chose to fight went to Thermopylae (Hot Gates :stuck_out_tongue: ) to delay the vastly superior in number enemy forces. When betrayed and encircled, the rest of the army was ordered to retreat, while 300 of the Spartans stayed together with 700 Thespians. These 700 were hot stuff (+servants, slaves etc. IIRC).

“His arm has grown long indeed”
I did catch some instances of Lord of the Rings segueing into 300: the rhino/oliphants, the ghoulish Immortals and the ogre warrior. Ephialtes (with correct pronunciation, woo!) had a clear case of gollum. Trivia: Ephialtes means nowadays nightmare in Greek. I have missed the parts in Herodotus where Xerxes is described as a transvestite.

“Imperial March”
Now, for Star Wars! The ephors weren’t really clones of Senator/Emperor Palpatine in disguise. Otherwise they’d know Force Grip. If the Persian cavalry looked like Darth Vader from the behind, we’d all be Sith now.

“What’s your price, bitch?”
I don’t know who did the ephors. They wielded power greater than kings but they were elected annually and the whole Spartans keeping Spartans from the war plot was bunk. We are talking about the same war where the “soft” Athenians sacrificed Athens. Being bribed with Persian gold would be a dead giveaway in Sparta, where the coins were designed to be heavy.

“Won’t somebody please think of the children?”
I lol’ed there. Anyway, the women in Sparta had it good for the times. If a Spartan accused a woman of adultery, they’d just laugh. Damn Romans and their ad hominem attacks.

“I’ll sue Jesus on copyright”
We all saw Leonidas raising his hands to die in a Crucifix posture, nailed by the arrows. Also Hell is quite an anachronism there; Hades wasn’t hell. Get off my lawn!

Trivia edit: Thermopylae has nowadays been so eroded by the water that it’s a few kilometres/miles long. The place boggled my young mind when I first saw it.

It’s a movie based on a comic book based on an historic event. It’s all about bad ass fight scenes and fucking cool quotes. Stop analyzing it so much.

And only one man has the abs to compare to the 300 Spartans, and that man is Ken Shamrock. You sir, are no Ken Shamrock.

Remember the really fat guy with swords for arms? What aspect of Greek or Persian culture did that represent?

Yeah, I forgot him. Solid proof that Jabba the Hutt is a Space Persian/Greek, limbs not included. Think along the lines of Warhammer 40K.

I originally had a nitpicking warning somewhere in the post. If the movie wasn’t entertaining I would have began real nitpicking, so that you’d know about the real ab training regimen of Sparta, “Biceps of Steel in just two weeks”, “How to pump your shoulders” and other relevant stuff. To prove my abs are bigger, I’ll challenge Ken Shamrock in a battle to death; of tic-tac-toe.

I figured if I just turned my mind off and appreciated for what it was- A big dumb action flick, I would like it.

Didnt work.

the only unfortunate thing (and something that probably doesn’t have a place in an action movie) is that the major motivations and causes for the Spartan war state is the massive slave population they had under control, which was also the major reason why they’d hesitate before committing soldiers abroad.

All I can say is that my “watching people get stabbed through the torso” quota has been filled for the year.

Also true.

My favourite part was that pretty much every single line in the movie was yelled. I hope the real spartans were like that:

“I don’t know why we’re going on this picnic. What the hell kind of sandwiches are these, Leonidas? This is Peanut Butter! This is Jelly!”


“. . . Right. You know what else? To top off your weird sandwiches, the sun’s gone behind a cloud.”


“Look, I’m just saying, why couldn’t we have a nice evening in, instead of being out there in the rain with these disgusting sandwiches.”


“And is there a reason we’re doing that, or. . .”


And so on, and so forth. That’d be a pretty fucking great civilization.

EDIT: Rig made the dine joke before me. I thought I was all clever for thinking of it, but it is the thread’s name. In big letters at the top of my window. Balls.

In American, Thespians are high school theather fags, so that probably wouldn’t have gone over well with the macho audience demographic.

“Won’t somebody please think of the children?”
I lol’ed there. Anyway, the women in Sparta had it good for the times. If a Spartan accused a woman of adultery, they’d just laugh. Damn Romans and their ad hominem attacks.[/QUOTE]

I haven’t seen the movie, but the thought that a Spartan would say this amuses me.

Nah, the Thespians always get overlooked unless it’s a historian speaking. Never mind that they came from a society that was art-oriented rather than war-oriented.

Beware of my almighty jokes, Arac.

That’s why a lot of Chinese poets became generals and vice-versa. Historians and artsy-folk can’t ignore them. They’ve got it coming from both sides, like some kind of kinky, historical analysis three-way.
Oh, Cao Cao.

The western world seems to have been more performance art -oriented. If Nero’s hit “The Rome’s on fire”* wasn’t scathing criticism, what was it?

*rumoured to have been a remix.

A jammin’ mix that the Gauls could put their balls to the wall and get funky to?

Actaully those extra were represented in the movie (remember the Arcadians). However, you are also forgetting how there were many more than 700 Thespians, there were about 6,000 to 7,000 Greek. If you want to get even more into it, you could also mention how it wasn’t just a storm that killed a lot of Persians, but alsoa naval battle. Also, on the last day, after they got surrounded, it was just the 300 Spartans. However, it is pretty much just an action movie based on a historical event. Besides, if you want to be truly accurate, there are shitload of things that you could comment on. It is just a guys movie. Sex and violence are the key themes and it is just to entertain. Plus, if you want to get into a historical representation of the battle, you could also acknowledge how people are now interested in the battle and trying to learn about it since the movie came out.

History Channel

I watched it today with one of my coworkers… after it ended she told me she kept trying to compare the men’s cup sizes…

I was surprised to see the movie came with bondage equipment. IIRC they wore armor in Ancient Greece, not leather jock-straps.

Was decent, probably won’t get the DVD.

I mentioned Leonidas ordered the rest of the army away. The Thespians remained there till death with the Spartans. I agree with the rest of your comments Info.

Throw Manowar, WoW and ancient Greece into a pot. Add some senseless mutilation. Stir. This is what you get.

I think the Spartans actually did fight in loin cloths, though I might be mistaken.

I thought they fought nude, actually. I know the celts did, so I could just be thinking of that, but I think they went inthere with a spear and shield and a lot of (openly visible) balls.