Lee's Review: "300: Rise of an Empire"

(WLTX) - It's been seven years since Frank Miller's artistic bloodbath 300 attacked the multiplex. And, while the violent images possessed a unique visual style, I couldn't help feeling a little frustrated with the redundancy of it all. Regardless, it had a loyal following and, frankly, I'm surprised a follow-up has taken so long.

But a sequel was nearly impossible. So, they shifted their focus from Sparta to the concurrent battles of Greece. General Themistokles hopes for an alliance with the Spartans for a unified force. However, stubbornness gets in the way of the greater good and he must carry on without them.

While their opposing leader is a Persian God, the most frightening foe seems to be Artimesia. Catwoman has nothing on this proud Greek turncoat. And Themistokles seems to find her abilities quite alluring.

Maybe my expectations were a little lower this time around - but I felt like improvements were made. There's a more coherent story, there's sunlight...and there are women! It's like they opened up the suggestion box and really listened. Yet, in no way does it compromise the artistic carnage that drew the people in to begin with. I'm not saying that makes this is a great movie. But it does offer more variety.

I have no doubt that any fan of the first film will be entertained. The real surprise is that those who were not may be as well.


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