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March 7, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Several critics suggest that 300: Rise of an Empire would work more effectively as a video game. “This is the genre of abs and pecs and arrows in the eye in slow motion, with geysers of globby blood floating around, prettily and painlessly, for our gamer-style delectation,” writes Michael Phillips in the Chicago Tribune. Adam Nayman in the Toronto Globe and Mail writes that “This Xbox aesthetic was at least somewhat unique when 300 came out in 2006, but seven years’ worth of slicked-up sword-and-sandal epics has diminished its novelty significantly.” And Joe Neumaier adds in the New York Daily News: “The film winds up looking like an ashen video game. It’s even more muddy in IMAX and 3D.” Nevertheless, the film is also garnering some enthusiastic applause from some critics. Indeed, Betsy Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times gushes, “As much performance art as movie, “300: Rise of an Empire” unfolds as beautiful, bloody, slow-motion machismo. Torsos bared, swords flashing, another 300 rock the leather skirts and loincloths with pounding, passionate music perfectly underscoring this latest round of the ‘beautiful death’ the ancient Greeks were so poetic about.” David Hiltbrand in the Philadelphia Inquirer was affected similarly. “With its slo-mo ultraviolence, gushers of blood, impressive 3-D effects, homoerotic subtext, and self-important plot, this is a fan boy’s fantasy, a four-star wonderment,” he writes. And all that blood and gore in the movie? It’s not going to make the squeamish squeam, Kyle Smith suggests in the New York Post. “It isn’t remotely disturbing, because it’s so stylized and comic bookish,” he observes. He suggests that there’s plenty about the movie that can be criticized. “But why fight it?” he asks. “This isn’t Sparta. This … is … Hollywood.”