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‘300: Rise Of An Empire’ Reviews: Should You See The Epic Action Flick?

Fri, March 7, 2014 11:29am EDT by Shaunna Murphy 2 Comments

‘300: Rise of an Empire’ rose to theaters on March 7, and the reviews are piling up like the dead bodies in the film’s wildly violent trailer. So — should you see it? Find out what top critics are saying below!

The original 300 film was released in 2007, and while reviews were mixed, it obviously did well enough to merit a sequel. The latest installment of the fantasy action series — which is based on Greek history — stars Sullivan Stapleton, Eva Green, and Game of Thrones star Lena Headey — but does their star power bring anything new to the franchise?

‘300: Rise Of An Empire’ Reviews — Should You See It?

Should you race to theaters this weekend to see 300: Rise of an Empire? Depends on who you’re talking to.

The Hollywood Reporter

“Although Gerard Butler’s star has significantly fallen due to the 17 mediocre films he’s made since 300, he’s missed here; his replacement at the top of the sequel’s cast, Australian actor Sullivan Stapleton, just can’t bellow on a par with Butler, whose cocky, over-the-top abandon and staunch physical presence leave big sandals to fill. Visually, there was clearly a mandate to hew close to the original’s look. All the same, it’s disappointing that, after all the years, no effort has been made to augment or riff on the style at all; in fact, the new film is more monochromatic and duller in appearance, lacking the bold reds and rich earth tones that are glimpsed here in brief visits to Sparta and the events at Thermopylae.”

The New York Times

“The naval collisions and melees play out in panel-like renderings that are bold and satisfying for the first half-hour but lack the momentum and bombastic je ne sais quoi of 300.”

USA Today

“Stunningly shot and stupidly written, 300: Rise of an Empire (** out of four, rated R, opens nationwide Friday) has all the visual style and arterial spray of its predecessor, Zack Snyder’s 300.

But even that stilted dialogue is Fellini-esque compared with Empire, whose wacky take on Greek history won’t bother action fanatics. But for anyone looking for a sense of script (forget plausibility), Empire is a Trojan horse.”


“This highly entertaining time-filler lacks the mythic resonances that made 300 feel like an instant classic, but works surprisingly well on its own terms.”

Entertainment Weekly

“There’s so much crimson gore flying off the screen you feel as if you should be wearing a tarp like the folks in the front row of a Gallagher show.”

Time Out

“It’s flesh and carnage that the audience is here to see, and Murro delivers it by the glistening ton, pausing only for stray bits of backstory.”

New York Daily News

“The film winds up looking like an ashen video game. It’s even more muddy in IMAX and 3-D.”


“A triumph of production design, costumes, brilliantly choreographed battle sequences and stunning CGI.”

So, what’s your verdict, HollywoodLifers? The film is definitely getting mixed reviews — will you risk your wallets to see it?

— Shaunna Murphy

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