Mixed or average reviews - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 42
  2. Negative: 7 out of 42

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Critic Reviews

  1. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Mar 27, 2016
    We've seen plenty of sword-and-sandal epics, full of robustly virile men fighting like real men against other men. But we've never seen those hyper-macho mechanics presented with the brutal beauty and thrilling finesse of 300, clearly the best film of 2007 so far.
  2. Director Zack Snyder uses his computers to create ferocious and painterly images, with as much attention to each frame as a hand-drawn panel.
  3. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Mar 27, 2016
    A newfangled old-fashioned movie about glory, honor, sacrifice and a martial code that crosses into fascism, homoerotism and homophobia at the same time -- there are plenty of turn-off buttons in this one. But by Zeus, this is a ripping yarn, told with limb-rending gusto, an iconic ancient battle as seen by an iconic comic-book creator, Frank Miller.
  4. 80
    300 is a feast for the senses (well, two of them anyway) and an impressive technical achievement. More than that, it's a hell of a lot of fun.
  5. 78
    Not since Mario Bava's "Hercules in the Haunted World" has Greco-Roman movie-house mythmaking been so thoroughly well-conceived and executed.
  6. 75
    300 may not offer masterful storytelling in a conventional sense, but it's hard to beat as a spectacle and that makes it worthwhile viewing for all but the most squeamish of potential audience members.
  7. Look, but don't be touched: There is much to see but little to remember in this telling of a battle we are meant never to forget.
  8. 75
    300 is a movie blood-drunk on its own artful excess. Guys of all ages and sexes won't be able to resist it.
  9. 300 is a huge step forward in visually sophisticated storytelling.
  10. Cinema has once again proven its ability to incorporate every other mass-media art form. Director Zack Snyder and his computer wizards have made the best example yet of the movie-as-comic-book.
  11. It's impossible not to be moved by its nearly nonstop visual assault.
  12. Significantly, this hyper-stylization of 300 is limited to its visuals. The performances are played straight, and this combination -- straight performances and stylized visuals -- produces an uncanny effect.
  13. It may not be by-the-book history -- a relative term in any event, when discussing the ancients whose worldview embraced men, gods and monsters -- but what a spectacle!
  14. Arizona Republic
    Reviewed by: Bill Muller
    Mar 27, 2016
    In creating the ultimate movie for sword-and-sandal blood-spatter fetishists, director Zack Snyder scores on the spectacle side—300 looks amazing—but his mechanical story line and over-the-top melodramatics don't support the action. [9 March 2007, p.1]
  15. In epic battle scenes where he combines breathtaking and fluid choreography, gorgeous 3-D drawings and hundreds of visual effects, director Zack Snyder puts onscreen the seemingly impossible heroism and gore of which Homer sang in "The Iliad."
  16. 67
    The movie swings back and forth from awesome to awful so regularly and rapidly that it's like a jai alai match.
  17. This is a mixed blessing. For a story replete with open-air combat 300 is strangely claustrophobic. And for a film with lotsa flesh and even more blood, it's light on flesh-and-blood characters.
  18. 63
    300 is at its best when it settles for purely visceral thrills, such as Leonidas' battle against a hulking warrior twice the size of a normal man. The movie's broad strokes are all superlative: It's the details that keep 300 from being anything more than a striking curiosity.
  19. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    The action epic 300 is so overblown, overheated and over the top that on some level, it's fun to get caught up in the operatic dizziness of it.
  20. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    A blustery, bombastic, visually arresting account of the Battle of Thermopylae as channeled through the rabid imagination of graphic novelist Frank Miller.
  21. Reviewed by: Will Lawrence
    Visually stunning, thoroughly belligerent and as shallow as a pygmy’s paddling pool, this is a whole heap of style tinged with just a smidgen of substance.
  22. New Orleans Times-Picayune
    Reviewed by: Michael H. Kleinschrodt
    Mar 27, 2016
    There's no denying that 300 has its viscerally charged moments, but it would be a lot more fun if it didn't take itself quite so seriously. You don't get to be pretentious when you've populated your film with androgynous kings, lesbian concubines and giant elephants. [9 March 2007, p.4]
  23. 300 is "Gladiator" for the gamer set.
  24. Just about everything in this pea-brained epic is overscaled and overwrought – it's a cartoon trying to be a towering triptych.
  25. 300 is something to see, but unless you love violence as much as a Spartan, Quentin Tarantino or a video-game-playing teenage boy, you will not be endlessly fascinated.
  26. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    That it's so flat as an action movie probably has a lot to do with why people might prefer to jawbone over its putatively controversial aspects--there's really not much of a “wow” factor to revel in.
  27. 50
    There's a stale, synthetic airlessness about the movie. Imagine a large cast trapped in a series of spectacular screensavers. It could be ancient Greece. It could be somebody's hard drive.
  28. 50
    The disconnect between the human actors and the digital backgrounds is more pronounced here than in a futuristic adventure like "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow," and because classic Hollywood cinema is so rich with epic images of antiquity, this can't help but seem chintzy.
  29. 50
    Sensory gluttony is reason enough to see a movie, and few epics overstuff the eyes like this one.
  30. 50
    Part of the fascination of the Thermopylae story is that it really happened, and it helped define real heroism. There's nothing remotely like reality to be had in this film.
  31. 50
    My deepest objection to the movie is that it is so blood-soaked. When dialogue arrives to interrupt the carnage, it's like the seventh-inning stretch.
  32. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Mar 27, 2016
    A fun-sapped maelstrom without meaning, 300 simply pummels you with endless loops of battle-porn. While you couldn’t classify the movie as entertainment, it might have a long, prosperous future as a Clockwork Orange–style Ludovico Technique.
  33. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Mar 27, 2016
    It has to be said that there is a level of cheerfully self-aware ridiculousness, which means that 300 is not entirely without entertainment value.
  34. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    300 will be talked about as a technical achievement, the next blip on the increasingly blurry line between movies and video games.
  35. 40
    The bigger question to ask about 300 is why, for a supposedly rousing tale of heroism, it's so curiously unaffecting.
  36. Reviewed by: Nick Schager
    Mar 27, 2016
    Snyder attaches no larger significance to his arresting visuals. He’s only intent on eliciting “Whoa, dude!” reactions, of which there are fewer and fewer once it becomes clear that there’s nothing sustaining the centerpiece razzle-dazzle sequences except awful dialogue and no-dimensional characters.
  37. As you watch -- no, endure -- this flattened-out spectacle, there's really nothing worth pondering save for a single thought: What a difference a director makes.
  38. It's kind of a ghastly hoot, and while I suppose it does no harm, it also contributes nothing. It's a guilty unpleasantness.
  39. 30
    Another movie -- Matt Stone and Trey Parker's "Team America," whose wooden puppets were more compelling actors than most of the cast of 300 -- calculated the cost [of freedom] at $1.05. I would happily pay a nickel less, in quarters or arcade tokens, for a vigorous 10-minute session with the video game that 300 aspires to become.
  40. 300 presents a dual clash of civilizations. An action adventure that pits thousands of Persians against 300 brave Spartans at the Battle of Thermopylae, it also pits millions of fans of brainless violence against a gallant band, or so I choose to think of us, who still expect movies to contain detectable traces of humanity.
  41. 30
    Pop has always drawn energy from the lower floors of respectability; this movie, in which fan-boy cultism reaches new levels of goofy chaos and sexual confusion, draws energy from the subbasement.
  42. 20
    It's a ponderous, plodding, visually dull picture, but the blame shouldn't be put on Snyder's skills per se, and has nothing to do with his ambition to blur the distinction between CGI and photography. Frankly, it's the slavish, frame-by-frame devotion to Miller's source material that's the problem.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1432 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. HeruclesDoh
    Mar 14, 2007
    This has to be the first movie since Hitlers propaganda movies in the 40's to depict an entire civilisation (Persian) as subhuman. Way toThis has to be the first movie since Hitlers propaganda movies in the 40's to depict an entire civilisation (Persian) as subhuman. Way to go guys... so the "ragheads" are demons and goblins now. Was the shock and awe not effective enough?
    You know what this movie needed!
    Terror Alert:High
    Full Review »
  2. Aug 19, 2010
    300 is a movie I saw, I appreciated the look of the movie, and a few scenes were pretty memorable, but after I finished it I really had no300 is a movie I saw, I appreciated the look of the movie, and a few scenes were pretty memorable, but after I finished it I really had no urge to see it again. Even for just silly escapist entertainment for me there needs to be more depth than there is here. It's just a bunch of macho warriors screaming about war, preparing for war, and making war, and never did I really care about the outcome, never was I the least emotionally involved. Frankly for certain stretches of the movie I was bored. Full Review »
  3. GuillermoGalindo
    Mar 8, 2007
    Based upon i have seen so far, this movies is nothing short of spectacular action and dramatic scenes that can show us that ancient battlesBased upon i have seen so far, this movies is nothing short of spectacular action and dramatic scenes that can show us that ancient battles can be more exciting trough the eyes and mind of a great director. Really a must see for everyone that loves a great epic movie. Full Review »