Went and saw 300: Rise of an Empire this weekend. Fun enough movie. Great effects. Plenty of expertly choreographed battles in dramatic slow motion, just like the original. In a clever twist, the storyline runs in parallel with the events of the first movie. So while Leonidas is battling Xerxes on land, Themistokles is out battling the Persian fleet on . . . sea.
Again, fun enough movie but it doesn’t quite live up to the original. It captures the intense action aspect well enough with blood and gore galore, but part of what made the first movie so epic was the disturbing mix of the sensual with the grotesque to the point of making the average viewer (me), squirm in his seat. This sequel appeared to make a couple of halfhearted attempts to recreate that deliciously oppressive atmosphere, but never quite succeeded. Still, well worth the entry price . . .