300

I Robot

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Have to say, I wasn’t super stoked by the upcoming sequel to Zack Snyder’s über-stylized 300, but the following trailer for 300: Rise of an Empire goes a long way in increasing my interest. More after the trailer.

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free-thor

If you’ve watched cable television at any point over the last decade or so, chances are you’re familiar with what Movies on Demand is. They’re the company that’s teamed up with all the big cable companies, like Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, Cox Communications, RCN, Mid-Continent, and MetroCast, to bring one-click access pay-per-view movies to everyone’s cable boxes. Anyway, Comic Con is coming up, which means we’re starting to see cases of corporate synergy popping up all over the geek sphere, and the latest promotional deal is bringing quite a bit of comic book movie-related content to all of us non-cord cutters’ living rooms, including free supplemental features, coverage from the Comic Con floor, and more opportunities to rent geek-friendly movies than you can shake a stick at.

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Reel Sex

Ladies and open-minded gentlemen, this is the weekend for which we have been waiting ever so patiently. Years of watching our fellow sisters remove clothing and undulate for the good of “story” has finally paid off, and we will have our day in the sun. Our fearless prince, director Steven Soderbergh, has reached into the depths of his vast (yet dwindling) bag-o-tricks and presented us with a simple masterpiece that has been on the tip of wagging tongues for months. Magic Mike is the product of a genius, and while it isn’t a perfect film, Soderbergh’s dedication to objectifying his male cast is reassuring and welcomed. It is about time ladies get a fluff movie that isn’t about shopping, shoes, or relationships, but instead two hours of glorious female gaze. These men are hotter than this Texas drought I’m currently suffering through, and I appreciated every moment I had with them. But what makes Magic Mike something of dreams is the film’s playful self-awareness that it is, in fact, meant to be a sort of man droolfest. Soderbergh knows what he’s doing, and instead of alienating his audience he embraces them, offers up a beer, and presents six sexy, shirtless men on a platter for the world to see. I’m sure a discussable plot is in there somewhere (and I will leave that to our film review), but I am more interested in reflecting on a handful recent films that paved the way for this glorious moment of shirtless wonderment.

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Today is Mother’s Day. Don’t worry, we’ll wait while you go and pick up that last minute gift (Amazon gift cards are great at this point) and take a few moments to call your mom and tell her you love her. It’s something that I did earlier today, taking a few moments to check in with the most important lady around, my Mom. And while talking to Mom meant explaining why I don’t call so often and hearing gossip about all the family members I call even less, it also meant talking about our latest favorites in the world of film and television. Because that’s what we do, Mom and I. We talk about the shows we’re watching, she asks me about the movies she should see in theaters and I implore her to read the Game of Thrones books because they are so much better than those Sookie Stackhouse books she reads. This is my relationship with my beloved mom, we share experiences over the 1,400 mile gap between Austin, TX and Cleveland, OH. We used to do the same thing when I was a kid, and the gap was the 30 feet between my room and my parents’ bedroom. We’ve always just liked watching movies together. I’ve long held to the notion that it wasn’t comic books or anti-socialism that got me into the world of pop culture, it was my Mom. So on Mom’s day, I’d like to take a moment to celebrate her favorites in our weekly […]

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Henry Cavill and Frieda Pinto in Immortals

Oh, Tarsem, that one-name wonder. Tarsem blew the doors off with his first film, the 2000 thriller The Cell, starring Jennifer Lopez of all people. He brought his music video past and introduced the film world to his visually striking signature style. While you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who’d call The Cell a great film, you’d be just as hard-pressed to find someone who wouldn’t give at least some credit to the visuals. The Cell presents the inside of a killer’s mind with incredible flair. It is nightmarish and enveloping, and when Tarsem decided to write and direct his next feature, we knew what to expect. The Fall certainly lived up to those expectations, pairing Tarsem’s skill in painting visual portraits with a compelling story. So there are certainly more expectations going into Tarsem’s third feature film, this weekend’s Immortals.

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Despite the fact that the 300 sequel 300: Battle of Artemisia will be something of a prequel that tells the story of how Xerxes rose to power as a God King, it seems like we’re going to get a chance to catch a glimpse of old favorites King Leonidas and Queen Gorgo in the movie anyway. While talking to Movies.com, 300 producer Bernie Goldmann told them that this time around, “it’s a different story, however there’s a small part for Lena [Headey]. There’s a small part for Gerry [Butler].” There’s a bit of a risk you take in these sorts of situations of doing small cameos for famous characters, as sometimes it can look pandering and take the viewer out of the movie (think of all the times when characters from the original trilogy awkwardly got their name announced as they turned to the camera in the Star Wars prequels), so hopefully 300: Battle of Artemisia is able to bring back Lena Headey and Gerard Butler in an organic way.

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Movies We Love

Around the year 480 BC, an historical battle between a group of Greek city-states and a bullying Persian army began in a mountain pass of Thermopylae (literally translated to “Hot Gateway”). This epic war saw the Greeks vastly outnumbered by the self-appointed god-king Xerxes, who had spent years overthrowing other city-states to build up his human reserve. See, Xerxes is a classy king. He likes to send messengers to each threatening city-state, offering to spare the citizens in exchange for the allegiance to him. Well, when his trusty foot soldier ventured into Sparta, a town known for their militaristic nature and tough, no-bull-shit attitude, their refusal to join up with Xerxes was never heard. Spartan King Leonidas (Gerard Butler) all but told the offending Persians to fuck off and kicked them into a deep hole. Just like Helena before him, this kick ignited the fury of both the Greeks and Persians. Leonidas organizes 300 of Sparta’s best men to fight off Xerxes’ army, each man wanting the glory of dying in battle to defend their great city. While they’re out getting all hot and sweaty in just tiny pairs of war shorts, Queen Gorgo (Lena Headey) remains in Sparta trying to drum up support of the Spartan council to ready troops for war only to prove just how fierce Spartan women are when she’s threatened, assaulted, and almost killed by Theron (Dominic West), a senator more interested in power than glory. Two stories diverge in the course of Zach Snyder’s […]

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We’ve known for a while that since Zack Snyder is directing Man of Steel, somebody else will have to come on board to direct the sequel to 300 and that it probably won’t end up being called Xerxes, like Frank Miller’s graphic novel sequel was. Things seem to be progressing on both those fronts. We now have word of what that new title is going to be and that the suits have narrowed the candidates to direct down to two choices.

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The comparisons to 300 will be inevitable, so let’s just get them out of the way. Yes, the teaser for Immortals makes it look an awful lot like 300 (and the “From the Producers of 300” bit only amplifies it), but it looks like a far more visually dynamic version. Snyder’s movie looked amazing, but Singh has a more varied palette and a bigger paint brush, so everything here seems a bit more vibrant instead of automatically being washed out in sepia tones and blood reds. Those are definitely still there, though. This teaser is intense, and it showcases Singh’s best strengths as a filmmaker: his eye for production design. Check it out for yourself and get your blood flowing:

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The sequel to Zack Snyder’s super successful swords and sandals epic 300 used to look like a much more straightforward proposition than it does now. Frank Miller was writing a graphic novel sequel, Zack Snyder would once again adapt it into a feature film, and it was going to be named Xerxes. Lately all that doesn’t seem to be so set in stone. Since Zack Snyder signed on the make the next Superman, the question of who is going to direct has been up in the air. Sitting down to talk with MTV, producer Mark Canton has cleared up a few things about where the project is, and stayed a bit more vague about where the project is headed. The big news is that he says the film will no longer be called Xerxes. He said that the story is more of a “Xerxes Plus.” I suppose this hints that the film will be taking a more epic scope than being just a bio of the Xerxes character, but it also means that someone is still working on the development of and thinking about this project, despite the fact that Snyder has been shunted off to Superman. While Canton doesn’t have a new title to give us, he does seem to think that the story is in place. He says, “It’s been worth the wait. You know, that group of people, we’re really a family. That’s part of what made that movie . . . so gratifying. Rather than doing […]

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Zack Snyder has been a busy beaver ever since he made 300. That film, an adaptation of a graphic novel by Frank Miller, was able to cross over and hit both the comic book nerd and the frat boy demographics in a way that nothing else ever has, thus creating a perfect storm of young male disposable income going into studio pockets. Execs were so pleased with what Snyder did on the project that his follow up film Watchmen was heavily billed in its advertisements as coming “from visionary director Zack Snyder”. That’s right, three films in and the man had not only hit director’s name in the voice over status, he also got a really cool adjective attached to his name. But today it seems like the upward trajectory of Snyder’s career might have hit a momentary snag. Vulture claims to have inside knowledge that the upcoming sequel to 300, Xerxes has been taken out of Snyder’s hands. This is largely because they need him to focus on his upcoming Superman film. You see, due to a historically long lawsuit between the people currently schlepping Superman product and the estates of Superman’s creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, Warner Bros. only has until 2013 to get a Superman movie out before they lose the rights to key elements of the franchise. Rumors abound that Snyder’s upcoming film is suffering from some serious script problems; more specifically that it doesn’t have much of a third act. Speculation is that the […]

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Xerxes

Even though he had shown some visual chops with his Dawn of the Dead remake, it was 300 that put director Zack Snyder on the big map. The intensely stylistic, bloody affair propelled both Snyder and star Gerard Butler to Hollywood’s A-List, where both have enjoyed some juicy projects since. Three years later, Snyder and his producing partner/wife Deborah are in the midst of two releases: next year’s girl-power shoot out Sucker Punch and this fall’s heroic animated owl adventure Legend of the Guardians. But Zack seems to be most excited about something new — another collaboration with co-writer Kurt Johnstad and comic legend Frank Miller on Xerxes.

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It’s more ancient history for Gianni Nunnari and Mark Canton, the producers of the smash hit film 300. The pair is planning to produce a historical drama based on Conn Iggulden’s bestselling “Emperor Book” series about the life of Julius Caesar.

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Gerard Butler in 300

300 made money and lots of it and now Warner Bros. is thinking of reopening that mine and going for some 3D gold. Snyder was shown a ten minute clip that had been converted to 3D by the studio.

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I know there’s already a list of historically inaccurate films featuring Braveheart and 300 online (they’re here too), but here’s a few more you might not have thought of. Who am I kidding? You’ve thought of them. You’re pretty clever.

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After being inundated with a slew of ads for Clash of the Titans and Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, it’s completely obvious that Greek mythology is poised to be the latest trend for Hollywood. But unlike vampires or pirates, there hasn’t been a recent proven Greek mythology hit to alleviate the fears of today’s risk adverse Hollywood. So why the recent Hollywood leap of faith?

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benfosterinterview

The star of The Messenger talks about losing loved ones, his X3 disagreements with Brett Ratner, and the film he turned down five times.

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american-flag-header

Instead of doing a cheesy list for Veteran’s Day, we here at FSR decided just to give a run down of all the war-type movies that we’ve covered over the years (the good, the bad, and the boots on the ground).

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GerardButlerLawAbidingCitizen

The actor and Evil Twins producing partner talked with us about his latest flick (in a very busy year) and about the crazy family that made him who he is today.

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published: 12.19.2014
A-
published: 12.18.2014
C-
published: 12.17.2014
B+
published: 12.15.2014
B


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