A heavily stylized visual feast takes its inspiration from historical fact: multiple assassination attempts on the life of China's first emperor. A nameless warrior (Li), looking for a reward, comes to the court of the King of Qin (Chen) to report that he has killed three legendary assassins. Flashbacks are then used to recount his success against Long Sky (Yen), Broken Sword (Leung), and Flying Snow (Cheung) while the King provides his own interpretation on the truth of the matter. Shifts of color (black, white, red, blue, green) reflect changing moods and the martial arts sequences are choreographed more like dances than fights. Tech credits are top-notch from the lensing to the production design, music, and costumes. The Cantonese accents of Hong Kong stars Cheung and Leung have been dubbed into Mandarin.
Buena Vista Home Entertainment, 500 S. Buena Vista St., Burbank, CA 91521-1120, Toll-free: 800-723-4763, URL: http://www.bvhe.com
Available on VHS, DVD
Running time 96 minutes.
Originally from Chinese, Hong Kong.
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