Sunday, October 15, 2006

300


I’m currently obsessed with the upcoming movie 300, which like Sincity was based on a comic book by Frank Miller, and is now going to be remade into a highly stylistic movie that looks like LOTR/Troy on LSD. Check out the trailer.

What a story. It has so many awesome lines, Frank Miller just had to ink it. It’s one of the greatest stories ever told. At the battle of Thermopylae, a few thousand Greeks, led by the Spartan king Leonidas commandeered the first resistance to the Persian king Xerxes, whose empire stretched from the edge of Greece to the edge of India. By some accounts, it was 3,000 Greeks vs. a two million conglomeration of Libyans, Egyptians, Arabs, Ethiopians, Babylonians, Syrians, Assyrians, Ionians, Lydians, Bactrians, and Indians… it was a formidable fighting force.

The Greeks fought them at the “hot gates”, a precipitous tight narrow path which reduced the Persian numerical advantage, and the Spartan army’s tank-like formation tactics held the line for three days. The sacrifice of the 300 Spartans who died roused the country into unification, and they fought back valiantly.

I can’t wait for this movie. I read the comic book a couple of days ago, and while I liked it, I couldn’t help take offence to some of the undertones. First of all, the timing of this movie is a little suspect. At at time when Iran wants to go nuclear.. comes an ancient story of how they wanted to enslave the last free world of free people who wanted freedom and liberty beyond all means for freedom is worth fighting for and freedom is worth dying for as is liberty rah rah bullshit.

The word freedom is has been molested long enough, and I hope the movie doesn’t have any rah rah Mel Gibsonish war cries about liberty or freedom.

Secondly, the comic has a few symbolic undertones which maybe I’m looking too deeply into, but see for yourself and judge. The Persian arrowheads have moon and trident heads on them. Is it just me?

It's unfair of me to complain about how revisionism in an English movie made for a western audience, but how come when Alexander ran with a similar conglomerate right up to India's door, his great philosophy isn’t enslavement, but "one people"?.

The only fun thing about history is rewriting it, so I propose a story of how a small tribe of Indo-Scythians exiles whose village is sacked, their women raped, children slaughtered, go on a suicide mission and turn the tides of history by assassinating Alexander in a guerrilla fight.

The movie won’t he half as cool though.

P.S. History of the Middle East in 90 seconds

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