Ying xiong (Hero)

Interestingly for this film I walked in not knowing what the story for this would be. Usually the trailer gives everything away of the movie (see Aliens vs Predator for the entire story of the film in only one minute), however this trailer actually gave me a totally different idea from the movie. This ended up being just as bad for me as I was a bit disheartened at the beginning, but that didn’t last.

The tag lines are flying all over the place for the PR, “…most beautiful movie ever made…”, etc. Well they really aren’t wrong; this really is visually stunning and is just a joy to watch. The locations, the costumes, the movements of the actors, it’s just all so luxurious on the eyes.

Talking of the actors, the quality is superb. For me, Jet Li wasn’t the strongest, it was by far Tony Leung Chiu Wai as Broken Sword, followed by the very intimidating Daoming Chen, the King of Qin.

Story wise, well I really am not going to summarise this movie, not that I’ll spoil any plots, it’s just that there isn’t an easy way to do it credit in a short blurb. It’s an excellent story however, and although you never really know what happened for definite, the journey is what makes this such a great movie.

That, and of course, the beautifully filmed fight scenes. They are stunning, with some superb wirework that just rises above what has been seen in similar movies. Each single scene for the fights seems to have been thought of from a cinematic experience, and there is never a case where the fighting is there for the sake of it, each is there for a dramatic reason.

The story plays out from multiple viewpoints, each presenting a different slant on the history leading to the opening point of the movie, and which do you believe?

The beauty, I thought, is that all this just continues to build tension to the point you’ve been waiting for early on in the movie. The tiniest detail of the film represents a great moment, and the sparse dialogue helps to highlight each of these to perfection.

I would thoroughly recommend this, it really is as it is billed, a spectacular movie. However, don’t go expecting Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, the story here is very different, and although there are a few similar themes, the story plays out very differently and is filmed in a very different way. Also, listen for the superb Japanese Drumming group in the soundtrack.

Excellent movie, a must buy on DVD when it is finally allowed to be released – check out the original date of this movie release in the Far East!

IMDB UK movie details.

My voting history on UK IMDB

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