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CanadianGirl
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300

Post by CanadianGirl » Tue Mar 20, 2007 3:04 pm

Hi-Have any of you guys seen "300" yet? I was really excited when I heard about it-I love Herodotus & i thought it might be a REAL historical movie-but then I saw the ads & I was disgusted. The format looks like an unusually stupid vid game ( I know-they're ALL stupid, but some are more stupid), and the dialogue in the ads is also stupid: "Taste death, dirty barbarian." etc. This movie seems to be aimed at approx. the 12 year old boys' level: lots of brainless violence & lots of brainless dialogue. If I'm wrong please tell me-I really would like to see an intelligent treatment of Herodotus. Won't get it from hollywood, though. Thanks. P.S. I just saw Irene's post about the movie-wish I'd seen it sooner!
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Post by Mofmog » Tue Mar 20, 2007 3:47 pm

The point of 300 is not to be historically accurate. It doesn't eve come CLOSE to claiming any sort of reality. It is an expression of masculine machismo set in a semi-historical time. That is it. The trailors made this point extremely explicit. In fact, I would go as far as to say this is a mythicalization of the "real" story, much in the same way the Iliad is a mythicalization of the "real" trojan war.

Also I dont appreciate you snubbing video games :(

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Post by Lucus Eques » Tue Mar 20, 2007 9:58 pm

300 is a fantastic movie -- to be sure, it is not history, though easily more so than Gladiator or Ben Hur. My comments are in the other 300 thread. You have nothing at all to fear. I found it inspiring and wonderful. Also, the makers exspected the movie to rate well with men age 18-35 — 100% positive from them, in fact. What they didn't exspect: 100% positive rating from women age 18-35.
L. Amadeus Ranierius

SCORPIO·MARTIANVS

CanadianGirl
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Thanks for the replies

Post by CanadianGirl » Tue Mar 20, 2007 10:12 pm

Lucus (should say Equus): Thanks for the information. It's just that I remember crying when I first read the story in Herodotus at age 15-really the way the Spartans behaved is the way I think Canadians would behave in that situation. (& Australians, & Americans, & Brits, & Germans, etc.) So to see that scene transformed into vid game format (that's what it looks like to me) is a little repulsive. My point is: Really, are we so clueless that we have to have everything presented as a cartoon? Whatever happened to reality? Oh and about women approving: What did you expect-lots of scantily clad, muscular guys in the movie! I'm in favor of that subject myself. Anyway, hope I'm not offending anybody. My younger brother hears this all the time & you guys will be glad to know, he keeps right on with his vid. games, etc. He'll like the movie, no doubt. I'll probably see it too, since some intelligent people have recommended it. Paige.
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Lucus Eques
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Post by Lucus Eques » Tue Mar 20, 2007 10:36 pm

I am certainly no fan of video games. This movie, however, resembles a painting. This famous work depicting the same battle resonates strongly with the movie:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/c ... id_004.jpg

Perhaps the movie is even more beautiful:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/e ... _cliff.jpg

The movie is based upon a comic book -- another genre I am not fond of -- but, graphic novel would definitely be more appropriate, I think. I'll tell you what, though: I'm really glad I didn't let my respected Textkittens talk me out of seeing this movie — I'm going to see it again next weekend, and take my parents.
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SCORPIO·MARTIANVS

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Lucus Eques
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Post by Lucus Eques » Tue Mar 20, 2007 10:40 pm

Also, from wiki:

Spartan women enjoyed a status, power and respect that was unknown in the rest of the classical world. They controlled their own properties, as well as the properties of male relatives who were away with the army. It is estimated that women were the sole owners of at least 40% of all land and property in Sparta.[13] The laws regarding a divorce were the same for both men and women. Spartan women received as much education as men, as well as a substantial amount of physical education and gymnastic training. They rarely got married before the age of 20, and unlike Athenian women who wore heavy, concealing clothes and were rarely seen outside the house, Spartan women wore short dresses and went where they pleased.

This is especially well depicted in the movie. Another reason I liked it very much.
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Post by Turendil » Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:57 pm

I think if I remember right that aristophanes and the other dramatists of Athens loved to portray the "henpecked" spartan husband but I could be wrong.
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Post by Carola » Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:29 am

My husband just "loves" going to these movies with me - he has to listen to me correcting the dialogue, picking up mistakes in clothing, weapons and various attitudes to things (like the attitude to homosexuality so glossed over in "Troy").
As silly as these movies are, it is interesting that the film industry keeps mining classical literature for all its best stories. I am waiting for another remake of Jason & the Argonauts, should be great with modern special effects. It seems the public just can't get enough of this stuff, so perhaps we also need some modern translations of these old texts to follow up their movie experience. I know my library stocks up on extra copies of Jane Austin & Dickens every time one their books hits the TV screens in a series, but some of the old translations of the classics seem almost as antique as the Greek originals! This doesn't win over too many readers new to this genre.
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Post by acarrig » Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:40 am

Carola-

I wonder why this hasn't happened. I see bookstore editions of Herodotus and Homer all the time. Why not just slap a glossy cover with a shot from the movie on the front to make it look hip and stick in the front of the bookstore with all the other movie books? Seriously - does this happen? I haven't noticed.

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Yes!

Post by CanadianGirl » Wed Mar 21, 2007 3:39 pm

Carola: That is a super point! & doesn't that say a lot about how fascinating classical literature really is? After thinking it over, I realized that at least "300" will create interest in the subject, so let's hope other people (publishers, movie makers, etc. ) will respond. My reaction was just due to the fact that I've loved Herodotus forever & I hate the thought that he was being twisted (as Irene says) for this movie. I still wonder why a serious portrayal of Thermopylae, with a more in-depth use of the various personalitiies, hasn't been done. Maybe there isn't an audience for that in the 21st century. Lucus Eques has a really reasonable attitude toward this topic- I appreciate his logic. I will probably see it too, out of curiosity. P.S. A friend of my family just asked me for a good book about Sparta for her son-he is into the Spartans now, & I'm supposed to be the resident expert! I recommended Lazenby's book (forget the title) we read it in college & it's the best good intro. I'm aware of. Take care. Paige.
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Post by Caius Brittannicus » Thu Mar 29, 2007 1:11 am

Hello; I'm new here, but I just felt compelled to add my comments on the movie 300. It is awful, awful, awful! It would seem to be targeted to pre-teen boys for the gore, middle aged women and gay men for the mostly naked, all muscled men. It ranks right up there with classics (ahem!) like The Saw, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and other brainless blood spewing, violent twaddle!

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Post by elduce » Sat Apr 07, 2007 3:54 pm

I haven't seen 300, but I'll get around to it. I can tell from the trailer that it's heavy on look and light on reality, but I don't care. If you don't like it, don't watch it; hollywood's been skewering history for decades. If people were forced to watch a truer representation of the Iliad or some other event, they'd fall asleep. The film industry knows this, and because we are conditioned for violence and visual images, films must be action-packed so much so that reality is irrelevant. Gladiator is not true; Troy is not true (that movie is pile of ****); Braveheart is not true.
I enjoyed most of these but also know they are nonsense.

And look out for Pathfinder. This flick looks like 300 again. Hollywood is relying heavily on graphic novels lately.
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Post by perispomenon » Sat Apr 07, 2007 5:15 pm

What suprised me in the trailer I saw for '300': I heard two lines Wheelock presented to me when I started out learning Latin again (not Greek, mind you): 'TONIGHT WE WILL DINE IN HEEEEELLLL' (yes, it was not spoken, but screamed), and 'Our arrows will blot out the sun, well we will fight in the shadow then'.

I was surprised by the fact that those two lines were in the one trailer and that in Wheelock they are also close together. So I am wondering: where does this come from? From a Greek or a Latin source?

THERMOPYLAE: A SOLDIER’S HUMOR
“Exercitus noster est magnus,? Persicus inquit, “et propter numerum sagittarum nostrarum caelum non videbitis!? Tum Lacedaemonius respondet: “In umbra, igitur, pugnabimus!? Et Leonidas, rex Lacedaemoniorum, exclamat: “Pugnate cum animis, Lacedaemonii; hodie apud inferos fortasse cenabimus!?
A Persian says, “Our army is great (powerful) and because of the number of our arrows, you will not see the sky!? Then a Spartan says in reply: “Therefore we will fight in the shade!? And Leonidas, king of the Spartans, calls out: “Fight with courage, Spartans; today we will dine, perhaps, among the dead)!?


edit ---- seems to be from Cicero.

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Post by edonnelly » Sat Apr 07, 2007 9:31 pm

The fighting in the shade business definitely comes right out of Herodotus (5th century BC):
[url=http://www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext01/2hofh10.txt]History of Herodotus part 2[/url] (translated from Greek by G. C. Macaulay) wrote: 226. Such were the proofs of valour given by the Lacedemonians and Thespians; yet the Spartan Dienekes is said to have proved himself the best man of all, the same who, as they report, uttered this saying before they engaged battle with the Medes:--being informed by one of the men of Trachis that when the Barbarians discharged their arrows they obscured the light of the sun by the multitude of the arrows, so great was the number of their host, he was not dismayed by this, but making small account of the number of the Medes, he said that their guest from Trachis brought them very good news, for if the Medes obscured the light of the sun, the battle against them would be in the shade and not in the sun.
Both appear in Plutarch (1st Century AD) :
[url=http://oll.libertyfund.org/Home3/HTML.php?recordID=0062.01]Plutarch, The Morals, vol. 1[/url] ('translated from the Greek by Several Hands') wrote: And to another saying, What, the flights of the Persian arrows will darken the very sun, he said, Therefore it will be pleasant for us to fight in the shade.

...

And he ordered his soldiers so to dine, as if they were to sup in another world.
The lists:
G'Oogle and the Internet Pharrchive - 1100 or so free Latin and Greek books.
DownLOEBables - Free books from the Loeb Classical Library

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Post by elduce » Sun Apr 22, 2007 1:39 am

I finally saw 300. I liked the picture's bold approach and couldn't care less about historical accuracy. 300 is simply sex and violence from start to finish. The visuals were compelling. Go see it not to complain about hollywood getting it all wrong again and then pointing out the flaws as most pedants do, but because you like thrilling entertainment.

The only thing I didn't like was that a semi-intelligent family sat in front of me. The father and son decided it was time to use their cell phones and play with their menu screens, to which I wanted to put my foot in the guy's ass. Total assholes.
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Post by CanadianGirl » Tue Apr 24, 2007 9:16 pm

elduce: I love the phrase "semi-intelligent!" I know swarms of people who fit that description. (Some of them are probably using that phrase to describe me). Paige.
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Post by Bert » Tue Apr 24, 2007 10:11 pm

CanadianGirl wrote:elduce: I love the phrase "semi-intelligent!"
When I read that I wondered what was meant; Reasonably smart or half witted. :)

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Post by Turendil » Tue Apr 24, 2007 11:43 pm

depends. Personally I think it describes all of us at some point or another.

People have a tendency to be resonably smart at one level and half witted on another at the same time
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Post by elduce » Sat Apr 28, 2007 12:46 am

Yeah, well, I meant more like inconsiderate assholes (I like how the censor doesn't pick up assholes) than stupid people. They were stupid too. I'm not a genius, but I appear like one compared with that family. Anyway, they're going to do a sequel to 300 called 600 starring Bruce Willis as Leonidas II, Lindsey Lohan as wife, and Hulk Hogan as Xerxes XIV. See you there.
ego amo megaforce

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Post by elduce » Sat Apr 28, 2007 12:48 am

Oh yeah, I forgot to say that CanadianGirl is cute. Vale, amica.
ego amo megaforce

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