300: Rise of an Empire

Rated 2.0

One of the best moments of unintentional hilarity in Noam Murro's noisy and stupid 300: Rise of an Empire is almost a throwaway line. As an Athenian general surveys his chiseled and battle-worn troops, all of whom appear to have wandered out of a 1980s Bowflex commercial and into a gladiator-themed stag film, he remarks with a straight face, “Not bad for a bunch of farmers, poets and sculptors.” OK, so 300: Rise of an Empire isn't exactly Double Indemnity in terms of snappy dialogue and complex characters, but that's not the problem here. The problem is that in terms of being a hyperstylized, dreamily captivating, deliriously homophobic-homoerotic bit of action kink, it's not exactly Zack Snyder's original 300, either. Only French actress Eva Green transcends the cartoonish mayhem, savoring every word of the dopey screenplay as though they were stuck between her teeth.