Even some American reviewers noted the political overtones of the West-against-Iran story line — and the way Persians are depicted as decadent, sexually flamboyant and evil in contrast to the noble Greeks.
Still, it touched a sensitive nerve. Javad Shamghadri, cultural adviser to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, said the United States tries to “humiliate” Iran in order to reverse historical reality and “compensate for its wrongdoings in order to provoke American soldiers and warmongers” against Iran.
The movie comes at a time of increased tensions between the United States and Iran over the Persian nation’s nuclear program and the Iraq war.
“It is a new effort to slander the Iranian people and civilization before world public opinion at a time of increasing American threats against Iran,” it said.
Iran’s biggest circulation newspaper, Hamshahri, said “300” is “serving the policy of the U.S. leadership” and predicted it will “prompt a wave of protest in the world. ... Iranians living in the U.S. and Europe will not be indifferent about this obvious insult.”