In ninth century China, a rebel group called The Flying Daggers is constantly challenging government authority; agents Jin and Leo (Takeshi Kaneshiro, Andy Lau) are hoping a blind dancer (Zhang Ziyi) will take them to the group’s leaders. Director Zhang Yimou followed up Hero (2002) with another visually stunning martial arts adventure. A beautiful autumn saga with gorgeous colors and imaginatively staged fights; they completely dominate the film (the one in the forest is awe-inspiring). The romance is OK, but don’t expect much of a story; many ingredients are also awfully familiar.
2004-Hong Kong-China. 119 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by Zhang Yimou, William Kong. Directed by Zhang Yimou. Cinematography: Zhao Xiaoding. Cast: Takeshi Kaneshiro (Jin), Andy Lau (Leo), Zhang Ziyi (Mei), Song Dandan.
Trivia: Original title: Shi mian mai fu. Zhang Yimou allegedly wrote a part for Hong Kong star Anita Mui, but she died before filming began.