In the year 480 B.C., the Greeks and the Persians fight one of the most famous battles in history at a place called Thermopylae. Here, the mighty Persian war machine, which has conquered ... See full summary »
Jeffery A. Baker,
Essentially true story of how Spartan king Leonidas led an extremely small army of Greek Soldiers (300 of them his personal body guards from Sparta) to hold off an invading Persian army now thought to have numbered 250,000. The actual heroism of those who stood (and ultimately died) with Leonidas helped shape the course of Western Civilization, allowing the Greek city states time to organize an army which repelled the Persians. Set in 480 BC.Written by
Jes Beard <email@example.com>
I was a teenager when I first saw this film. I was raised on the ancient spectacle films of the 50's and 60's and feel this one holds up quite well. No, it's not perfection with respect to history. The Spartans were hardly democratic or benevolent. But, they were fiercely proud, great warriors and very independent. The film does a fine job choreographing the 2-3 day battle, given the budget and FX limitations of the early 60's. Very similar to "Helen of Troy" in these respects. Richard Egan was excellent as Leonidas but the script was very limiting for him and the rest of the cast. I will look forward to seeing the film that results from Steven Pressfield's "Gates of Fire". Hopefully 40+ years of technology will create a true epic, as befitting an action (unknown to most school kids today) that helped preserve and push Western Civilization.
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