300: Rise of an Empire

Movie review by
Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media
300: Rise of an Empire Movie Poster Image
Sequel with stylized bloody battles, sex, and vengeance.
  • R
  • 2014
  • 102 minutes

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 8 reviews

Kids say

age 15+
Based on 18 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Hidden inside all the bloody battles is a theme about democracy, or nations working together to attain peace and freedom, but it's ultimately fairly muddled in the storytelling. Also, seeing the movie may interest teens in reading about the real history.

 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Most of the characters are wooden and forgettable. Other than being brave warriors in battle, they have no traits worth emulating.

 

Violence

Though fantasy-based and totally artificial, the movie contains an array of brutal battle scenes, with arrows, swords and shields slicing into dozens of bodies. Huge gushes of fake-looking computer generated blood are shown spraying out at every angle. Heads and limbs are sliced off. A man's face is smashed underneath a horse's hoof. Dozens are killed. Things explode. Perhaps worse, the lone female character gets a flashback to her childhood, wherein her family is said to have been tortured, raped, and killed. As a girl, she is captured and chained up in the bowels of a ship, clearly bruised, and a man approaches her and is shown removing his shirt (abuse is strongly suggested).

 

Sex

A sex scene between Themistocles and Artemisia plays more like a fight than lovemaking. They throw each other around the room, and thrusting is shown. Artemisia is shown topless for several moments. Another woman is shown topless in an earlier scene, as she is being taken prisoner. Hundreds of chiseled, muscled men are shown posing shirtless, like an army of Chippendales dancers.

 

Language

"F--k" and "c--k" are used clearly, once each. In a noisy crowd scene, it sounds as if they are each used a second time, but it's difficult to tell for sure.

 

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that 300: Rise of an Empire is the sequel to the violent hit 300, with the story taking place before, during, and after the events of the original. The violence in the new movie is artificial and fantasy-based, but extremely bloody, with many fight scenes, sliced-up bodies, severed heads and limbs, and huge gushes of spraying blood. There's also a subplot about an abused girl, with sexual abuse strongly suggested. The movie contains a sex scene that plays more like a fight than lovemaking, and female toplessness is shown for several minutes. Another woman is topless in a brief scene, and many chiseled, musclebound men are shown shirtless throughout. The movie clearly contains one use each of "f--k" and "c--k," and a possible second use during a noisy crowd scene.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byFilmFanatic March 16, 2014

Bloody CGI violence and an explicit sex scene

Violence (12+)- Obviously as this is the companion movie to "300" it features the same stylized bloody violence as its predecessor. The action is more... Continue reading
Adult Written byzazmopepperz April 9, 2014

Not as good as the first

Rise of an empire is a fun film to watch with very well-done action sequences however the new characters are no where near as engaging as those of the first 300... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byJosh2515 April 16, 2014

300 rise of an empire lives up to the first

I loved this movie the action scenes were amazing and the fake blood doesn't bother me the fighting looks like a video game. Eva green was a highlight in t... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byJesse Butin April 29, 2014

Good for mature kids

The violence pushed even my extreme taste, and I wouldn't recommend it for juvenile families, but it was good and mature teens should be fine.

What's the story?

Set before, during and after the events of 300 (2007), the story turns to Greek general Themistocles (Sullivan Stapleton), who wishes to unite all of Greece in a new democracy. The Spartans oppose his idea, and he must go to war against the powerful Persian navy, led by the vengeful warrior Artemisia (Eva Green) and the half-God king Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro). But when the 300 Spartans die in battle, they become martyrs, bringing all the fighting forces together for one cause. Unfortunately Themistocles and Artemisia have some personal history together that complicates things.

Is it any good?

The film starts with droning exposition -- explaining a plot that is historically inaccurate anyway -- and adds wooden dialogue and stilted speeches. Then it throws in a boatload of posing, shirtless, chiseled, bearded men that are difficult to tell apart from one another. This is followed by an ongoing array of slow-motion sequences of swords slicing into bodies, limbs, and heads, and huge sprays of fake-looking computer-generated blood. Dust often floats in the foreground to highlight the 3D.

The monotony of the rest of the movie throws into sharp relief one character, the fierce, chilly warrior Artemisia (Eva Green). Green can't do much with this one-dimensional role, but she's by far the best thing in the movie. Zack Snyder adapted Frank Millers graphic novel, while Noam Murro directed. The final product is brutal and boring, though it will no doubt entertain the many fans of the hit original.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's violence. Does the movie go over-the-top? Is the violence realistic? Entertaining? What is the appeal of movies like this?

  •  

  • Does the movie have a message about working together, or is it more focused on the idea of revenge?

  •  

  • Is the movie's sex scene based more on violence, or on love?

  •  

  •  

  •  

  •  

  •  

Movie details

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

For kids who love comic books and action

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate