300's Berlin Premiere Reported as Amazing

February 15, 2007

There is a bit of an odd thing happening over at the Berlin Film Fest. Zack Snyder's 300, the epic Spartan movie, had its world premiere there. At the world premiere the apparent reaction was incredible, with a report from Warner Brothers publicity stating that, "the screening was interrupted again and again by spontaneous applause and cheers from the 1700 strong audience." I really want to help support this film with as much buzz as possible, because it really was incredible.

Now, I'm not trying to be a stickler, but Cinematical is reporting that at a press screening the film was booed. Although I don't think Erik is flat out lying, I think that reaction is just a bit ridiculous and not the realistic reaction of the interested movie going audience - so don't be at all swayed.

Stars Gerard Butler and Rodrigo Santoro at the Berlin Film Fest World Premiere.

You've got to think about the situation. It's Europe's second biggest film fest (next to Cannes) and there are probably hundreds of very intellectual independent dramas debuting their. It's like comparing Notes on a Scandal to 300 - it just doesn't work. You can't compare those two because they don't even have the same audiences or the same interest at all. It seems like Erik Davis has an unnecessary grudge against 300. That's why I always prefer to go to general audience screenings at Sundance, because the press are always stuck up in their opinion.

The bottom line is that 300 had an amazing world premiere in Berlin. It was completely sold out and full of cheers and a standing ovation. Zack Snyder, the director, even commented stating, "it was awesome to be at the Berlin Film Festival World Premiere and experience the amazing reaction." So that's it, believe what you will - the stingy European press who don't have an appreciation for action-filled comic book adaptations, or the real audiences who were interested in it and gave it a standing ovation.

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That Erik dude is a blogger, not a reporter and not a critic. His biases were transparent in what he wrote. Also, his telling of the small press screening, which by the way he misled people to believe he was talking about he Premiere itself, is unsubstantiated. He can say it is so but no one else seems to know anything about that. He's not news. And he very well may be lying. The news is that the film GOT A FRICKIN' STANDING OVATION in Europe at the Premiere. That is something that HAS been substantiated.

Mike on Feb 15, 2007


Certainly!! This is like The Fountain... where it got booed and then later it got a standing ovation and the standing ovation was what it got remembered for! Plus the amount of positive reviews and positive buzz circulating around this is substantially much more than any negative.

Alex Billington on Feb 15, 2007


I like how Mike is going around trying to tarnish my name everywhere -- Mike, who do you work for again? Anyway, I do not have a grudge against 300 -- I wrote like 6 or 7 posts hyping the movie up Alex, and I went into it really wanting to love it. I was on the phone with a friend of mine prior to the screening, hyping myself up -- he was so jealous I was about to see it. The reality is that it just didn't live up to par for me -- sure, it was pretty to look at, but the beauty masked a thin plot and characters I simply did not care for. Am I wrong for saying how I felt? I don't have an "agenda," and I'm just as much a fan of movies as the next guy. Show me a group of people who loved one film and I'll show you a group who hated it. I did not hate 300 -- I've seen worse films by far -- but I wanted to like it so much more. It was fast food action -- stuff that doesn't exactly stick with you for too long. A fast food version of Braveheart, I think is what I called it. What I said happened at the screening, happened at the screening. Yes, it was my fault for not specficially stating it was a press screening early on -- but I did add it in later -- frankly, I had a deadline and another movie to catch and was asked to write the story up real fast. If you look online (I believe GreenCine also has a review from the same screening I was at), the boos, folks leaving the theater and the laughter are all mentioned. So, I was not imagining anything, it happened. And, it was sad that it happened because no movie deserves to be disrespected. And I am happy it received a standing ovation at the premiere -- but what Mike fails to tell you is that every film that premiered at the Palast received a standing ovation, not just 300. But you don't receive those press releases.

Erik Davis on Feb 15, 2007


It's obvious that you aren't lying and I know some of this is a PR stunt (done well I must say), but I think my biggest issue is that booing it at a screening full of a bunch of stingy European critics who are looking for deeply intellectual dramas at a film fest and then glorifying the hugely negative results is not right. Sure your boss told you to publish it quickly, what better way to get hits than to post the first (and only) negative opinion on 300. I think that's my issue. This is obvious that it'll happen. 300 is not meant for everyone, but it is especially not meant for the crowd you saw it with, but it is meant for the crowd that saw it at the world premiere. You shouldn't be posting only the critics reaction at the press screening, but also the reaction at the world premiere. And sure they all get standing ovations, but do all of them have "the screening was interrupted again and again by spontaneous applause and cheers from the 1700 strong audience." I think you need to be fair and show both sides of the stories. Critics are critics, they don't like much. But 300 is designed for the general fan boy movie going audience. And you are of course entitled to your opinion of it not living up to par, just don't go around only showing your one side of the story when it's obvious it has both sides.

Alex Billington on Feb 15, 2007


Alex, if you wait 20 minutes, you'll see our post on the other audience reaction. We are reporting it, just a little late as we did not receive the press release -- gee, I wonder why ... And when it comes out, we will have one or two more reviews -- which may or may not be favorable, so our readers will have a crop to choose from.

Erik Davis on Feb 15, 2007


Sounds good... and don't worry, I'm not at all trying to be hostile against Cinematical or you or anything... I'm just stating my opinion on the situation.

Alex Billington on Feb 15, 2007


Well, I'm quite ur opinion, Alex. Surely, there is a difference weather u watch the movie with a general crowd or a bunch movie critics. I myself saw it at the world premiere. And there was a great response to it. The audience was clearly amazed and fascinatde by 300! And so was I! In my opinion 300 is really great and worth being seen!!!!

Maria Lopez on Feb 16, 2007


Mike, who do I work for? You are implying something with that I suppose. Fair enough, I'm a Firefighter with no affiliation with anyone having to do anything with this or any other film. I'm interested in this particular film and your report because my daughter who is on a study program in Germany happened to be there in Berlin and she is taking a film course this semester. I was interested in your deception because, well, I have a thing about letting people get away with false reports. I know, it happens all the time on the net.... but sometimes you get caught and in this case you REALLY got caught. My question is what motivated your deception in the first place? If you didn't like the film I have no problem with that. Why use a false representation of others reactions to bolster your own position? That, my friend, is juvenile. Alex, you may be interested in the news that the German press was surprised by how Erik had characterized even the press screening, keeping in mind that his headline came off like it was the big Premiere audience. The following was posted yesterday as comment on Erik's blog. My daughter said she also saw it in the German press and it has become quite a topic of discussion. ----------------------- I am surprised!!! Maybe I (and other journalists) were at a different press screening. But there was certainly no booing after the movie. I just read the same opinion in the professional press (Blickpunkt:Film) in Germany. They are very surprised, that some online journalists write about a negative feedback after the screening, because they felt the movie received a positive feedback at the press screening. Quote from Blickpunkt:Film (in German): "Auch in der Pressevorführung nachmittags war der Film mit großem Interesse und durchaus freundlich aufgenommen worden. Das hinderte einige Journalisten nicht, online das glatte Gegenteil zu behaupten." And: The public screening was a tremendous success. The screening was even interrupted by spontaneous applause from the audience. I think it is OK for you not to like the movie - but why make up this story? ------------------------------------

Mike on Feb 16, 2007


There you go again, Mike, saying that I am making things up. Were you at my screening. No, you weren't. Since we're posting Cinematical comments, how about I share two you might have missed. Audience Raves Over 300 at Berlin Scott -- "If I may ask, what was the source of your story? Was it from someone who was at the premiere, or was it taken from Warner's press release? I was at a separate screening from Erik, and the reaction was the same as he described. There were a ton of walkouts. I'd love to hear from someone who was actually at the Berlinale Palast on Wednesday night. I've not been to a single premiere at this year's fest that received a standing ovation. There is a lot of buzz about the film here at the fest, but it's almost all negative." And a second comment, from someone at the same screening as I: Berlinale Update: 300 Screens To Chorus Of Boos In Berlin "Allow me to ring in with an objective observation from the same press screening that Erik Davis attended: - Roughly 20 people left the screening during the first 15 minutes. (As a person who've never left a film playing in a cinema, I don't endorse this - but at festivals this happens more easliy, because people can catch another film if the one they've begun seeing is not in their taste). - The film suffers from a very pretentious style, and this was reacted upon by laughter - where laughter was not intended. Especially when the Xerxes-figure entered the film. - The film was definitely booed at the end, joined by some sarcastic whistling, and an occational cheer. I went to see this film because I loved the trailer, the premise and the comic book. Sadly, I have to agree with Mr. Davis' review - the film is not as good as it should be, and a major disappointment." --- I guess there's more than one person making things up, huh Mike? Oh, and GreeneCine Daily also posted a review from the SAME screening and backed up my statements. I guess she is making it up too, huh Mike. We're all making this story up -- why, again?

Erik Davis on Feb 16, 2007


Hey Alex, I was the Usher at the Cinemark off powers who was with you guys in Ghost Rider, just thought I'd drop by and check out some of your stories/reviews when I came on this one. I must say I have to agree with some above comments, the bias is definitely apparent in his article. I'm going to school for my PhD in Psychology and we have to always be picking out biases in articles so it's more-or-less a habit now. As I have not seen "300" yet I could not tell you whether or not I enjoyed it, but as a big fan of Frank Miller and the Sin City adaptation it is hard for me to believe this film will be less than great. I look forward to seeing you guys at the midnight showing, keep up the good work!

Joshua on Feb 19, 2007


Let me add something...Movies are made for audience but NOT FOR PRESS REPORTERS, if the movie gets incredible respond from the audience then why uneducated press media peoples have problem with it. why they bring their a$$ between ? erik devis-he is just "wanna be film critics" and still in learning process of it and nothing all........or... or IS He TRYING TO GAIN CHEAP INTERNET PUBLICITY ?Poor erik devis. why they gives opnion on movies like 300 when they cann't understand abcd... of visual art, sfx, ect. the movie is clearly mentioned has based on Frank miller's graphic novel...not based on actual event. why don't these uneducated cheap press ppls understand? do we care press opnion on movie like 300? we have our own brain ( better then erik devis " wanna be critics") to judge the movie 🙂 300 will RULE 🙂 Regards Steve

Steve on Mar 3, 2007

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