300 not a documentary?!?!?! Oh, the Horror!

So, I was all set to go see Frank Miller’s new flick 300 as I heard it was a completely spot on documentary of the Battle of Thermopylae. I mean, Frank is clearly one of the best documentary directors of our times as he so accurately put down a good chunk of Batman’s life story and Sin City was a milestone docu-drama of inner city criminal activities.

But now I learn that Miller may have diverged from the truth in the telling of 300?

And now the Iranians, gays, lesbians, Persians, brown people, handicapped people, and others are offended by the inaccurate, gross categorical, mistreatment of their particular groups within 300’s plot?

And….


No, wait. Can’t continue. Hurts to much to pretend to be outraged while laughing this hard at these idiots.

It is a MOVIE people! A bloody fictional thriller!

If you happen to be taking a class from Assistant Professor Ephraim Lytle of Hellenistic history at the University of Toronto, can you do me a favor? Please lecture him on the differences between “fantasy” and “reality”. And laugh at him a bit. Please?

Of course, I would fully expect that Lutle would do exactly the same to any student showing up in his class claiming that 300 was somehow educational. Point. Laugh. Then flunk the dumbass right out of your class, people.

What next? Will there be a law mandating statements of “this movie is a fictional interpretation derived from what may or, more likely, may not have been a historical event” at the beginning of movies?

300 is not real. The DaVinci Code was a remarkably successful work of fiction by an author that doesn’t know his ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to technology. The X Files were not the government’s way of disclosing secret events to the illuminati through untraceable channels.

How about some educational darwinism, please? Anyone who claims to have “learned” about “reailty” from any of the above? Just smack ’em with a verbal clue-by-four.



15 Responses to “300 not a documentary?!?!?! Oh, the Horror!”

  1. mdmunoz says:

    I couldn’t agree more.

    What makes it really ridiculous is that the movie is based on a graphic novel that is itself a fictional embellishment of the battle.

  2. Dad says:

    folks just do not understand that a movie is still make believe.
    here is one that is ironic.
    Andy, the man who was working with mom is attending NYU to get his masters. he is studying film right now and as part of his course he is now on what is porn and what is not porn. this week he had to view “I Am Curious Yellow” and “Deep Throat” !!! Yes, that “Deep Throat”.
    You and i cannot buy or view this film as it is banned in this country but you can “study” it in college.

    now where is my app for college…

  3. Diogenes says:

    I’d love to know why you’ve got this ax to grind, but I have to say that your acrimoniousness is pretty misplaced here. Have you seen the discussions people have about the faithfulness, e.g., of the Lord of the Rings movies to the Lord of the Rings books!? A history professor criticizing the protrayal of historical figures and events for deviations from the truth is sober in comparison. It won’t prevent me from seeing the movie, but it’s still good to know.

    Now, a bunch of people arguing about the accuracy of the portrayal of a fictional character in one storytelling medium compared to another… that is completely absurd.

  4. Diogenes says:

    Dad,

    Are you writing us from 2007 or 1977? 🙂 Deep Throat was banned in some states at one point in time, but you can order it from Amazon now. There’s even an ASCII art version floating around the net, which is pretty impressive, I might add.

  5. bbum (waiting for panic'd machine to reboot) says:

    I find the “discussions” regarding the faithfulness of reproduction of the LotR movie vs. the book to be a more valid discussion than the various folks offended by 300, Borat or anything like it.

    LotR vs. LotR is, at the least, a comparison of two different portrayals of what every sane person knows is a fictional event.

    That professor’s article was not written as “this is a fictional movie and, in case anyone is interested, this is how it differed from the our best understanding of actual history”. The professor was quite clearly criticising Miller for bifurcating for the best understanding of reality.

    That is the real crime. That is the detail that has my briefs in bunches on a larger scale. The movie is a work of fiction derived from another work of fiction that was loosely based on reality. Confusing it with reality directly or indirectly through things like the professor’s article or through the idiots that are upset about the portrayal of their race/culture/creed/orientation/whatever is just inexcusably stupid.

  6. bbum (waiting for panic'd machine to reboot) says:

    But, yeah, ultimately I’m really not that upset about any of this… it is just a symptom of a bigger stupidity that is slowly eating at the soul of America.

  7. Diogenes says:

    What is really eating at the soul of America is that a bunch of unscrupulous cockroaches have taken over the government and turned it into a kleptocracy, making a time in which US funded death squads in Central America or inaction during a genocide in East Africa were the main things to get outraged about seem nostalgically quaint by comparison. But I digress…

    Ephraim Lytle’s beef with the movie is not that it fictionalizes historical events, but the things he choses to take liberties with and the ways in which he takes those liberties. For example, if I write a fictional book that takes place in Turkey during 1915 and make the Armenians look like a bunch of people that were just begging to get slaughtered… yes it is a piece of fiction, but it is prefectly valid to criticize the socio-political liberties I take with the Armenian genocide as being historically inaccurate, and I don’t think it is unreasonable for the Armenians to be miffed.

  8. rogre says:

    I am just happy to come to a web site (this one) were anyone cares or knows differences between literary fictions and the stories we use for histories. The web is usually as dumb the general population.

  9. Dorkpants says:

    One day Hollywood will make a fictional movie in which Americans are portrayed as bad guys and the Right will go and watch it and say “it’s just a movie…a great movie” instead of crying “What can you expect from those liberal lefties who run Hollywood? we’re gonna boycott this movie, praise Jesus.”

  10. BrownPeople says:

    As one of the brown people, White man has been denigrating other peoples history for a long time. Now that we object, you throw a hissy fit.
    So you have no problem stealing Aryan (which is a sanskrit word). Swastika (which is a sanskrit word). Aryan people are defined as Indian-Iranian. Abraham is a sanskrit word. The word Father and Mother comes from Persian.
    Aryan Invasion Theory was invented to denigrate the brown people. There is no such thing as Indo-European Languages but lie continues. Should I go on.
    So now that we are actually challenging the White Man’s Burden you don’t like it. how quaint. Any history that contradicts Judeo-Christian timelines is disregarded and ridiculed. There is more archeological evidence for Aryan empire in Israel than all the Jewish and Christian combined. Do you know that.

  11. John C. Randolph says:

    Say there “BrownPeople”,

    Did you have some kind of point you were trying to make? Do you imagine that the movements of people and cultures thousands of years ago entitles you to something individually?

    -jcr

  12. greay says:

    I’m going to see the movie, and I’m pretty sure I’m going to think it’s awesome. But I think your complaints are misplaced. Lytle’s review of the movie isn’t really all that different from yours of Digital Fortress. True, Dan Brown’s errors may be particularly egregious and he’s just a terrible writer, so it’s harder to look past them.

    I can’t say anything about the groups that are taking issue with the film, because I don’t know anything about that. But I can entirely understand an expert in Hellenistic history having a hard time enjoying the movie because of the things they get “wrong”.

  13. bbum says:

    Heh– I was wondering if someone would call me out on that. Kind of hoping so.

    There is a key difference: Both attempt to sensationalize something — technology or history — to create a better, more gripping or thrilling, story.

    The key difference is that Miller is taking some piece of reality (or, in this case, what we can figure out from historical records) and augmenting it into this awesome story.

    In Digital Fortress, Brown doesn’t augment or distort reality to make a better story. He dumbs it down to the point of being just plain ludicrous. As I pointed out in my “review”, my mother — a very non-technical person — found the story to be just plain stupid because of the glaring flaws in Brown’s attempt at painting an alternative reality.

    One could argue that Miller’s portrayal of events is a dumbing down. It kind of has to be to cram that much stuff into something as short as a movie. But that just leads back to the writing thing — the fictional bits (most of it) of Miller’s telling is really good. Brown’s fiction sucks monkey elbows.

  14. Frog says:

    I’m with Diogenes. I would add: you’re complaining about something absurdly meaningless. How about paying as much attention to what the “Christian” right and their ilk are doing to our own modern-day government?

    Bread and circuses.

  15. bbum says:

    Frog. Gee, I’m horribly confused. Here I thought I was writing a weblog largely for (a) the hell of it and (b) to take notes on random crap so I can easily find it later via Google (or search engine du jour). Yet, somehow, apparently, I’m supposed to be writing something meaningful to change the world?

    Actually, I’m not confused. I know I’m complaining about something meaningless.

    You might be surprised at how deep and vehemently I hold certain opinions about our government, the religious right, the religious left, and the jackassery pervasive throughout the world. I choose not to write about that here because I just don’t have energy and, frankly, I’m trying to keep this weblog at least somewhat family friendly.

    However, keep an eye on the rat gonads… maybe I will start my other weblog.

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