Warner is holding midnight screenings of “300” tonight, so Metro’s running my review today, the better to inform hesitant moviegoers. No link available at blogging time, but I’ll provide it as soon as it’s available.
I don’t think the movie really works — which is a shame, because after his brilliant “Dawn of the Dead” remake it looked like Zack Snyder would be the perfect guy to tackle this material.
Still, I can’t deny that it’s a visual banquet; Snyder has covered every pixel of his digital frame with splendid detail, obsessively quoting Miller’s panels, and for a while it’s almost enough to bliss out on the spectacular imagery.
But then you start to notice some issues with the pacing, and some problems with the script, and then the whole thing grinds down into a grim, humorless orgy of shouting and chest-beating and blood-letting, and you start to wonder if you’re hallucinating: Was that one of the Muppet Musicians of Bremen in Xerxes’ tent? Did someone just appear with lobster claws for arms? Did someone spike my popcorn? Am I tripping balls, or is the movie?
(It’s the movie.)
That said, I’d still recommend catching the midnight screening to anyone who’s vaguely curious about how a hyper-stylized, homoerotic fascist nightmare will play to the comic-book geek crowd most desperate to see it. You won’t find an audience that’s more stoked — these guys stayed up late and came out in the cold to be among the first to experience Frank Miller’s vision in all its demented glory.
And it’s available in IMAX. Their heads will frackin’ explode.