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Donnie Darko
So I read the snooty New York Times review and assumed it would be accurate and the movie would stink. The story sucks, people are the wrong races, the history wasn't accurate, blah blah blah.

Who cares? The movie was awesome, and followed in the grand comic book tradition of raising violent aesthetics to the level of gorgeous eye candy, better than anything to precede except maybe Sin City. Who cares about the damned story or that some of the bad guys had darker skin? The movie was about what it should have been about: 300 hard asses fighting off thousands of attackers until the bitter end. I thought it was great.
Head_prosthesis
I just want to skip over 300 to get to
The Watchmen!


Click to view attachment
Jaded Prole
So, given that this ahistorical dramatization of the battle of thermopylae has the Persians as the bad guys against the noble Greeks, is this a propaganda film ala Alexander Nevski? Well made maybe but methinks an application of emotion and myth to prepare a hestiant population for war with Iran. It also feeds into our worship of war and militarism -- ah the glory of martyrdom on the field of battle. Maybe it will inspire the young to enlist, pumped up with delusions of honor and glory, they need more people to feed the occupation in Iraq afterall.
Head_prosthesis
Sometimes a sausage is just a sausage, JP.
Jaded Prole
Being jaded, I tend to look at the implications of everything . . .




Sausage - the don't ask don't tell food.
whizz
QUOTE(Jaded Prol @ Mar 11 2007, 04:26 PM) *

So, given that this ahistorical dramatization of the battle of thermopylae has the Persians as the bad guys against the noble Greeks, is this a propaganda film ala Alexander Nevski? Well made maybe but methinks an application of emotion and myth to prepare a hestiant population for war with Iran. It also feeds into our worship of war and militarism -- ah the glory of martyrdom on the field of battle. Maybe it will inspire the young to enlist, pumped up with delusions of honor and glory, they need more people to feed the occupation in Iraq afterall.

I really like your clear vision JP. Even if the conclusion is a bit depressing.
I hope the warmongers think twice before actually starting to dance with Iran. If it is troublesome in Iraq just imagine what poop they will be stepping in when it comes to Iran... When will people in common start to realize WHO and WHAT they actually do the ultimate scrifice for?
Head_prosthesis
Yeah, just like in the graphic novel
(now a major motion picture) "300".
speedle
Down with war, but up with 300!
rogue_designer
Saw this Saturday afternoon...

Not a good movie. But very entertaining nonetheless. And, honestly, that's ok.
Donnie Darko
QUOTE(whizz @ Mar 11 2007, 05:18 PM) *

QUOTE(Jaded Prol @ Mar 11 2007, 04:26 PM) *

So, given that this ahistorical dramatization of the battle of thermopylae has the Persians as the bad guys against the noble Greeks, is this a propaganda film ala Alexander Nevski? Well made maybe but methinks an application of emotion and myth to prepare a hestiant population for war with Iran. It also feeds into our worship of war and militarism -- ah the glory of martyrdom on the field of battle. Maybe it will inspire the young to enlist, pumped up with delusions of honor and glory, they need more people to feed the occupation in Iraq afterall.

I really like your clear vision JP. Even if the conclusion is a bit depressing.
I hope the warmongers think twice before actually starting to dance with Iran. If it is troublesome in Iraq just imagine what poop they will be stepping in when it comes to Iran... When will people in common start to realize WHO and WHAT they actually do the ultimate scrifice for?


Gosh, and all this time I thought the whole point of the thing was to make shitloads of money. How optimistic of me.

Makes sense though. The first thing I thought of after seeing a 10 foot tall effeminate pierced Xerxes was that I'd really like to go throw a spear at some Iranians while wearing a leather diaper and a red cape. Semper Fi.
Jaded Prole
It may not be obvious to you if you lack insight into the power culture has in forming our identity and attitudes. It isn't a coincidence that our American culture has become steadily more violent, materialistic and vengeance oriented over the last several decades. During the cold war it was John Wayne and the Green Berets, by the time Reagan was pushing an aggressive agenda of contra wars and support of African terrorists like Savimbi we were being fed a steady diet of Rambo, Dirty Harry and an assortment of grade B mercenary flix. TV and cinema continue to push anger, vengeance and militarism. Now it's a minority of brave Greeks defending against the Persian hordes? Of course it's not the whole picture but it's a lot of it. We are in many ways a divided nation and there are vying cultural forces and attitudes but if one is aware of them, one can avoid being taken in by the assumptions being sold. We can even consciously contribute to a culture of more positive, humane values to counterbalance the corporate crap.
traineraz
I honestly thought this was relatively common knowledge; isn't it?

Heck, I remember in the early or mid-80s when all that discussion about video games came out. Reagan needed more fighter pilots; the games were to train kids in the art of future warfare, which will all be (and is now becoming) remote-controlled aircraft and the like.

Half the movies and television we see are thinly-veiled propaganda; the other half are distractions to prevent the common folk from paying attention to anything above gutter level.

Gee, I wonder how many deals were struck and how many people's futures mortgaged while we all watched with rapt attention the latest detail of Broccoli Spears' rehab adventures, or Paris Hilton's most recent excursion?
speedle
Now, NOT knowing really much at all about Mr. Miller's graphic novel, nor having read it, I feel compelled to ask, "why?", in the spirit of exploration. Why did the author fashion his novel from that particular perspective? Why did the studio green light the pic at this time? Why did the director make the movie from the perspective he did, hewing as closely as he did to the novel?

All those questions pop into my head when I consider a response such as yours, JP. It's not that I disagree with you, but it seems like a rather over-broad implication. Who knows, maybe there really is some kind of universal cultural sub-text to the American WOL that promotes these views?

Even if you're a staunch believer in "manifest destiny", it still pays to revisit history once and awhile, keep the modern context in mind, and better understand the diet we're being fed these days.
Jaded Prole
You are very much right about the importance of history. It is a shame that more attention is not paid to it but as I always say -- context is everything. It is also important to understand that we see history through the lens of our own time and experience. It is important to try to understand history in the context of it's own time. When a historically based movie comes out, I tend to wonder why that event is beeing focused on through the framework of where we are. Sometimes it appears to be coincidence, sometimes not.

Maybe in this case it is an "over-broad" implication but it struck me as having use to the current power.
Wild Bill Turkey
It's fairly obvious how a movie about brave soldiers defending against the Persian hordes might be of use as propaganda right now.

I haven't read the comic, seen the movie or even read the review, which the NYT has already made unavailable from their website. So I don't know in what ways the history of the story is bad. I do know that the story of the battle of Thermopylae inspired me when I was a kid, and I always wondered why nobody had made a movie about it. It seems like somebody is going to tell that story at least once in every generation.

The Persians did have an army of at least a million men. They were swallowing every farm, hamlet and city-state in their path, and they were marching on Greece. They were stopped, for days, at a tiny mountain-pass bottleneck that allowed 300 spartans to prevent the advance of their entire force. The spartans knew they weren't going to survive the battle, but chose to make their stand in order to give their countrymen time, and to send a very powerful message to both the Persians and their own people.

The story is virtually biblical in its machismo. It seems inevitable to me that it will be told again and again for at least as long as it has been already. Having said that, I can see that the timing of this version hardly seems like coincidence.
Head_prosthesis
I see it as an opportunity
for using a movie I haven't seen yet
as a step up onto my soapbox.
Wild Bill Turkey
No soapboxes were stepped on or injured in the making of my post.
thegreenimp
QUOTE(Head_prosthesis @ Mar 11 2007, 10:41 AM) *

Sometimes a sausage is just a sausage, JP.


It's all about sweaty sword & sandal films.
Head_prosthesis
A few answer for the young man in the fourth row.


Q. Why did the author fashion his novel from that particular perspective?

A. Because he's Frank Miller. He's a big fan of Willam Chandler,
Sam Peckinpah, Goseki Kojima and Kazuo Koike. He eats railroad spikes
and shits grenades.

Q. Why did the studio green light the pic at this time?

A. Sin City, hot. As Freddie Mercury once told Martha Quinn
about what kept the band together "Money dahling! Money!"

Q. Why did the director make the movie from the perspective he did, hewing as closely as he did to the novel?

A. It's called being fan girlie. It's respect. Admiration.
Because Zack Snyder is about 40 years old and in the 80's when young men
his age were reading comic books, Frank Miller was the man! He still is.


And if you're curious as to his role in Robocop2, as I was
Read this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Miller's_RoboCop
Wild Bill Turkey
QUOTE(Head_prosthesis @ Mar 12 2007, 05:10 PM) *

Frank Miller was the man! He still is.

I think this is the most important lesson to be learned in this thread.
Head_prosthesis
That and...

Alan Moore knows the score! Can U Dig It?
grey boy
We like the music, we like the disco sound
Donnie Darko
QUOTE(traineraz @ Mar 12 2007, 04:36 PM) *

Half the movies and television we see are thinly-veiled propaganda;


As someone who works in movies and television, I can tell you for certain that is not true. Movies and TV reflect prevailing social attitudes, or at their most ambitious are social commentary, they are rarely designed to create or entrench attitudes favourable towards the government. At worst they are designed to make money by any means possible, including product placement and merchandising spin-offs.

300 is an attempt to print money, as nearly every movie is, nothing more. As for the director, he's a Frank Miller fan. Of course he's going to direct the movie the way he did, there's no other way to do it.

Also note that the Iranian administration is not Persian, in fact they are hostile to native Persians who are far more liberal than the theocrats, so the point about being anti-Persian for the sake of invading Iran has little relevance to the reality of the situation.

Head put it best. Sin City was extremely popular/profitable, so the intent was to greenlight as many Frank Miller eye-candy fests as they can get their hands on. I doubt 300 will be the last one.
Donnie Darko
QUOTE(Head_prosthesis @ Mar 12 2007, 09:10 PM) *

And if you're curious as to his role in Robocop2, as I was
Read this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Miller's_RoboCop


That movie was designed to increase police recruitment and to encourage cops to shoot black people in the future.
Jaded Prole
No, just another vengeance flick for a culture where eating railroad spikes
and shiting grenades is supposed to be cool. . .
Steyr850
QUOTE(Donnie Darko @ Mar 13 2007, 08:09 AM) *

They (movies and TV) are rarely designed to create or entrench attitudes favorable towards the government.
'nuff said.


QUOTE(Jaded Prol @ Mar 13 2007, 08:36 AM) *

No, just another vengeance flick for a culture where eating railroad spikes
and shiting grenades is supposed to be cool. . .
Blood lust has been around a long time.
Absomphe
Yes, I prefer those kinder, gentler cultures, like the one evinced so tastefully in, say, Stalinist Russia, JP. harhar.gif
Le Gimp
"You been goofin' with the bees?"

You ever see Paris ?"

"No."

"You ever see New Dehli?"

"No."

"There you go. You see what you wantot see and you don't see what you don't want to see."
Jaded Prole
And then for all you fans of the Trojans, there's this.

MrsAbsomphe
QUOTE(Wild Bill Turkey @ Mar 12 2007, 02:28 PM) *

battle of Thermopylae inspired me when I was a kid, and I always wondered why nobody had made a movie about it.


There was a filmed version called The 300 Spartans, released in 1962. I thought it was mediocre.

---Tish looking-up.gif
Head_prosthesis
QUOTE(Jaded Prol @ Mar 13 2007, 07:36 AM) *

No, just another vengeance flick for a culture where eating railroad spikes
and shiting grenades is supposed to be cool. . .


Hey now, it was just a metaphor, dude. But if that were for real!
there'd be no supposing about it, that WOULD be fucking COOL!
And I'd have to come over to your house, eat all your Absinthe
spoons and silverware so I could poop some land mines in your
yard just to prove it to you.

Provenance
QUOTE(Jaded Prol @ Mar 11 2007, 10:21 AM) *

Sausage - the don't ask don't tell food.

Kirk's sausage - the ask for more food.
Donnie Darko
QUOTE
Sausage - the don't ask don't tell food.


But they love sausage in the military.

QUOTE
But if that were for real!
there'd be no supposing about it, that WOULD be fucking COOL!


I think it would be cooler if you ate a grenade and shat out an absinthe spoon. I bet that's how Kirk makes his.
Head_prosthesis
If there's any silver lining in the rationale that
films do influence our culture, it's that in real life
the loser will go to war, win, inherit a fortune, get
the girl, retire to a sunny beach where beautiful tan
people serve them cold delicious coctails and the hole
in the ozone begins closing as the credits roll.

the end.


Or is it ?

(cut to floor where gloved hand of Ming
enter scene to pick up jewled ring)

ha ha ha ha HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA !!!
FLASH!
Wild Bill Turkey
Forrest Gump meets Flesh Gordon! That was one of the best buddy-films I've seen in a while.
Steyr850
QUOTE(Head_prosthesis @ Mar 13 2007, 08:33 PM) *

If there's any silver lining in the rationale that
films do influence our culture, it's that in real life
the loser will go to war, win, inherit a fortune, get
the girl, retire to a sunny beach where beautiful tan
people serve them cold delicious coctails and the hole
in the ozone begins closing as the credits roll.

the end.


Or is it ?


Who is Humphrey Bogart
Jaded Prole
Now Bogart was cool!

QUOTE
Hey now, it was just a metaphor, dude . . .


The point is that you too are shaped by this culture -- we all are. We should also contribute because it is a two-way street. As much as culture determines how we see ourselves and what attitudes we have, it arises from the society it shapes. We should be aware of culture and its power and not be passive conumers.

Sausage or not, what makes Kirk cool is that he is fully Kirk and not some knock-off of what "cool" is supposed to be. He adds to the culture with his creations.

You're welcome to come eat absinthe here but not the spoons.
Kirk
That's why I like Headly; he's an original.
I'm mostly a knock off, a combination of everyone that I learned from,
I'm the culture grown from the spore that was left when anyone touched me.
I am mold.
Absomphe
Works grate on cheese.

Besides, we wouldn't have penicillin if it weren't for you, buddy!
Wild Bill Turkey
I am mold
I am mold
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled
Kirk

[backing vocals Tina Turner & The Ikettes]

I am gross and perverted
I'm obsessed 'n deranged
I have existed for years
But very little has changed
I'm the tool of the Government
And industry too
For I am destined to rule
And regulate you

I may be vile and pernicious
But you can't look away
I make you think I'm delicious
With the stuff that I say
I'm the best you can get
Have you guessed me yet?
I'm the slime oozin' out
From your TV set

You will obey me while I lead you
And eat the garbage that I feed you
Until the day that we don't need you
Don't go for help . . . no one will heed you
Your mind is totally controlled
It has been stuffed into my mold
And you will do as you are told
Until the rights to you are sold

That's right, folks . . .
Don't touch that dial

Well, I am the slime from your video
Oozin' along on your livin' room floor

I am the slime from your video
Can't stop the slime, people, lookit me go

I am the slime from your video
Oozin' along on your livin' room floor

I am the slime from your video
Can't stop the slime, people, lookit me go
Kirk
This thread has been Zappad.
MrsAbsomphe
QUOTE(Wild Bill Turkey @ Mar 14 2007, 08:35 AM) *

I am mold
I am mold
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled


heart.gif

I luvz dem litermarary allushuns!

---Tish looking-up.gif
Selmac
Looks like the Iranians are not taking it well.
Uncle
300 is a slick 70 million homo-erotic snuff film. It chock full of money shots except they use blood instead of semen. that said, it was cool when the elephant fell in the sea. yeah. blink.gif
Donnie Darko
QUOTE(Selmac @ Mar 14 2007, 01:46 PM) *

Looks like the Iranians are not taking it well.


Looks like I don't care what Iran thinks about American movies. If they ever actually saw the movie, they would also notice the Persian army had elephants, rhinocerouses, giants, and large executioner ogres with lobster-claw hands. They didn't have those in Iran! How offensive that a comic book movie dare show anything other than absolute reality!

The Departed got banned in China because one scene depicts some Chinese mobsters buying missile technology from US mobsters. I guess we're going to war with China too?

Some people are just too goddamned hyper-sensitive. It's a MOVIE based on a COMIC BOOK. You didn't see the entire country of England in an uproar when all the bad guys in Star Wars had British accents, did you?

Jaded Prole
Gee, you're starting to sound like Mel Gibson. Just a movie after all. What difference does it make if makes a twisted mockery out of history at a time when the media are doing everything possible to demonize Persians?
Donnie Darko
Since when is a comic book obligated to accurately represent history? You might as well criticize The Daily Show for having weak investigative journalism.

As for sounding like Mel Gibson, perhaps I should quote Iran's President's words about Jews for you to compare?

I could understand if someone had a gripe with the tv show 24, as the main terrorists in that show are Iranian and played by Iranian actors, and the show is intended to be a present day political/espionage drama. But "300" is a highly fictional stylized movie based on a comic book that was only very loosely inspired by historical events that bear little connection to modern day Iran or Iranians. The ONLY connection is that the invaders are Persian.

Speaking of Mel Gibson, that piece of shit movie he was in The Patriot demonized the British in every way imaginable, yet the entire country of England was not in an uproar. Rather than asking what is wrong with the 300, perhaps we should ask why Iranians are so incensed about a comic book fictional portrayal of something that was set over 1500 years ago, which they incidentally haven't even seen.
fryke
Then again, I'm pretty sure that the US wouldn't like _their_ old history to be tampered with. Ah, sorry, I forget they don't _have_ history that old...
Donnie Darko
If there were a movie made based on some comic book about the Revolutionary War and George Washington was a 10 foot tall effeminate slave-owning totalitarian who didn't even vaguely resemble what an American would look like, I highly doubt the entire country would be up in arms (though Christian fundamentalists probably would, without ever having seen the movie, of course).

In taking Iran's side over this movie, you guys are basically defending the Iranian equivalent of a Christian Fundamentalist reaction.

As for historical accuracy, what really happened back then was that Persia was an Imperialistic force that invaded Greece unprovoked. As people who criticize America's Imperialism (I do myself), wouldn't you side with the movie version of the Spartans in this conflict over the Imperialist Persians?

I think the people who should really be pissed off over this movie are hunchbacks! [ SPOILER ALERT!] The hunchback in the movie ends up selling out the Spartans so he can get a little nooky. This just goes to further the sterotype that all hunchbacks are backstabbing tail-chasers. One of you should go organize a hunchback march, pronto!
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