Indeed, Spartan is not a bad movie. It's not a great movie, either, but that's not Kilmer's fault. He tries.
The movie is written and directed by David Mamet, who I like, but I wonder whether the trademark delivery of lines--the repetitions, the emphases, the repressed violence--might work better in a story about repressed violence. This movie incorporates so much actual violence that the stylized dialogue seems to almost mock the seriousness of the events, making the movie harder to believe in.
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