Trailer Review: 300: Rise of an Empire (2014)

General Themistocles fights back against Xerxes in the new trailer for this historical action sequel

A new trailer has been released for 300: Rise of an Empire, the sequel to Zack Snyder’s 300 released in 2006. This new trailer sheds some more light on the story and characters in the movie including Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro) himself and Queen Gorgo played again by Lena Headey.

The plot is fairly standard fare for an all action movie and fans of 300 know what to expect. This sequel takes place before, during and after the events in the first movie where King Leonidas and his 300 hundred Spartans were killed by Xerxes, the invading king from Persia. It centers on Themistocles (Sullivan Stapleton), a Greek general who prepares to face Xerxes who is attempting to invade Athens. Themistocles is forced to forge an uneasy alliance with Sparta in order to fight back against Xerxes and his army. Eva Green also appears in the film as Artemisia of Caria, a Queen and ally of Xerxes during the conflict.

Lena Headey is a good actress and she brings an element of pathos to her role based on the trailer. Rodrigo Santoro is a larger than life villain as Xerxes who cuts an imposing figure which is fine for an action movie. Eva Green is also capable of hamming it up a little to play memorable villains so she is well cast here too.

The trailer is a typical mix of action, special effects and slow motion set pieces. Viewers may get the impression that like Snyder’s 300, this is a film concerned more with spectacle and less with intrigue or a compelling story. That’s a shame really as the tale is an interesting one which deserves to be well told. However, using this conflict as a mere backdrop for lots of action can be fun for fans of the genre. It’s a rather generic trailer that does little to stand out from a crowded market but it does at least show what the film has to offer. Black Sabbath’s War Pigs is also used as the soundtrack at various points in the trailer which is a nice touch.

300: Rise of an Empire may satisfy action movie fans looking for a fix when it is released on March 7th, 2014. The trailer makes it look like a fairly generic action flick though which favors style over substance.

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