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Leonidas I was a warrior king of the Greek city-state of Sparta, and the 17th of the Agiad line; a dynasty which claimed descent from the mythological demigod. The Spartan army stood at the center of the Spartan state, whose citizens trained in the disciplines and honor of a warrior society. Subject to military drill from. Sparda later appeared in the twentieth century where he met and fell in love with a woman named Eva, who bore him twin sons. He would later.
Plot[ edit ] Xerxes I of Persia leads a vast army of soldiers into Europe to defeat the small city-states of Greecenot only to fulfill the idea of " one world ruled by one master ", but also to avenge the defeat of his father at the Battle of Marathon ten years before.
Accompanying him are Artemisiathe Queen of Halicarnassuswho beguiles Xerxes with her feminine charm, and Demaratusan exiled king of Spartato whose warnings Xerxes pays little heed. In CorinthThemistocles of Athens wins the support of the Greek allies and convinces both the delegates and the Spartan representative, Leonidas Ito grant Sparta leadership of their forces.
Outside the hall, Leonidas and Themistocles agree to fortify the pass at Thermopylae until the rest of the army arrives. After this, Leonidas learns of the Persian advance and travels to Sparta to spread the news. In Sparta, his fellow king Leotychidas is fighting a losing battle with the Ephors over the religious festival of Carnea that is due to take place, with members of the council arguing that the army should wait until after the festival is over before it marches, while Leotychidas fears that by that time the Persians may have conquered Greece.
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Leonidas decides to march north immediately with his personal bodyguard of men, who are exempt from the decisions of the Ephors and the Gerousia. They are subsequently reinforced by Thespians led by Demophilus and other Greek allies. After several days of fighting, Xerxes grows angry as his army is repeatedly routed by the Greeks, with the Spartans in the forefront. Leonidas receives word that, by decision of the Ephors, the remainder of the Spartan army, rather than joining him as he had expected, will only fortify the isthmus in the Peloponnese and will advance no further.
The Meltdown for the biggest opening weekend in the month of March and for a Spring release. Jurassic Park but higher than Transformers. Once you make a great movie, word can spread very quickly. While it received a standing ovation at the public premiere,  it was panned at a press screening hours earlier, where many attendees left during the showing and those who remained booed at the end.
The site's critical consensus reads, "A simple-minded but visually exciting experience, full of blood, violence, and ready-made movie quotes. Scott of The New York Times describes as "about as violent as Apocalypto and twice as stupid," while criticizing its color scheme and suggesting that its plot includes racist undertones; Scott also poked fun at the buffed bodies of the actors portraying the Spartans, declaring that the Persian characters are "pioneers in the art of face-piercing", but that the Spartans had access to "superior health clubs and electrolysis facilities".
Comic Book Resources ' Mark Cronan found the film compelling, leaving him "with a feeling of power, from having been witness to something grand. The historical consensus, both among ancient chroniclers and current scholars, was that Thermopylae was a clear Greek defeat; the Persian invasion would be pushed back in later ground and naval battles. The Spartans' use of the narrow terrain, in those particular circumstances, is a military tactic known as " defeat in detail ". Paul CartledgeProfessor of Greek History at Cambridge Universityadvised the filmmakers on the pronunciation of Greek names, and said they "made good use" of his published work on Sparta.
He praises the film for its portrayal of "the Spartans' heroic code", and of "the key role played by women in backing up, indeed reinforcing, the male martial code of heroic honour", while expressing reservations about its "'West' goodies vs 'East' baddies polarization". He suggests that the film's moral universe would have seemed "as bizarre to ancient Greeks as it does to modern historians".
He remarks that SimonidesAeschylusand Herodotus viewed Thermopylae as a battle against "Eastern centralism and collective serfdom", which opposed "the idea of the free citizen of an autonomous polis ". Some passages from the Classical authors AeschylusDiodorusHerodotus and Plutarch are split over the movie to give it an authentic flavor. Aeschylus becomes a major source when the battle with the "monstrous human herd" of the Persians is narrated in the film.
Diodorus' statement about Greek valor to preserve their liberty is inserted in the film, but his mention of Persian valor is omitted.
Battle of Thermopylae
Herodotus' fanciful numbers are used to populate the Persian army, and Plutarch's discussion of Greek women, specifically Spartan women, is inserted wrongly in the dialogue between the " misogynist " Persian ambassador and the Spartan king.
Classical sources are certainly used, but exactly in all the wrong places, or quite naively. The Athenians were fighting a sea battle during this. It's about the romanticizing of the Spartan 'ideal', a process that began even in ancient times, was promoted by the Romans, and has survived over time while less and less resembling the actual historical Sparta. It's just in the visualization that it's crazy… I've shown this movie to world-class historians who have said it's amazing.
They can't believe it's as accurate as it is. That's what I say when people say it's historically inaccurate". He also describes the film's narrator, Dilios, as "a guy who knows how not to wreck a good story with truth". I took those chest plates and leather skirts off of them for a reason. I wanted these guys to move and I wanted 'em to look good. I knocked their helmets off a fair amount, partly so you can recognize who the characters are.
Spartans, in full regalia, were almost indistinguishable except at a very close angle. Another liberty I took was, they all had plumes, but I only gave a plume to Leonidas, to make him stand out and identify him as a king.
I was looking for more an evocation than a history lesson. The best result I can hope for is that if the movie excites someone, they'll go explore the histories themselves.
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Because the histories are endlessly fascinating. Kaveh Farrokh in a paper entitled "The Movie: Separating Fact from Fiction"  notes that the film falsely portrays "the Greco-Persian Wars in binary terms: He highlights three points regarding the contribution of the Achaemenid Empire to the creation of democracy and human rights. This was the first time in history that a world power had guaranteed the survival of the Jewish people, religion, customs and culture.Meet The Spartans Rated Version
Snyder relates that there was "a huge sensitivity about East versus West with the studio. The New York Post 's Kyle Smith wrote that the film would have pleased " Adolf 's boys,"  and Slate 's Dana Stevens compares the film to The Eternal Jew"as a textbook example of how race-baiting fantasy and nationalist myth can serve as an incitement to total war. Newsday critic Gene Seymour, on the other hand, stated that such reactions are misguided, writing that "the movie's just too darned silly to withstand any ideological theorizing.
They were the biggest slave owners in Greece. But at the same time, Spartan women had an unusual level of rights. It's a paradox that they were a bunch of people who in many ways were fascistbut they were the bulwark against the fall of democracy. The closest comparison you can draw in terms of our own military today is to think of the red-caped Spartans as being like our special-ops forces. They're these almost superhuman characters with a tremendous warrior ethicwho were unquestionably the best fighters in Greece.
I didn't want to render Sparta in overly accurate terms, because ultimately I do want you to root for the Spartans. I couldn't show them being quite as cruel as they were. I made them as cruel as I thought a modern audience could stand. Leonidas points out that his hunched back means Ephialtes cannot lift his shield high enough to fight in the phalanx.
This is a transparent defence of Spartan eugenicsand convenient given that infanticide could as easily have been precipitated by an ill-omened birthmark. Chemers, author of "'With Your Shield, or on It': Disability Representation in " in the Disability Studies Quarterly, said that the film's portrayal of the hunchback and his story "is not mere ableism: It would be much more classically Spartan if Leonidas laughed and kicked him off the cliff.
Snyder said of Xerxes: Officials of the Iranian government  denounced the film. Azadeh Moaveni of Time reported, "All of Tehran was outraged.