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Ashes of Time (1994)
"Dung che sai duk" (original title)

R  |   |  Action, Drama  |  17 September 1994 (Hong Kong)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 9,539 users   Metascore: 69/100
Reviews: 43 user | 121 critic | 20 from

A broken-hearted hit man moves to the desert where he finds skilled swordsmen to carry out his contract killings.



(novel), (screenplay)
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Ashes of Time (1994) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Complete credited cast:
Li Bai ...
Peach Blossom
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Joey Wang ...
(scenes deleted)


Ou-yang Feng lives in the middle of a desert, where he acts as a middle man to various swordsmen in ancient China. One of those swordsmen is Huang Yao-shi, who has found some magic wine that causes one to forget the past. At another time, Huang met Mu-rong Yin and under the influence of drink, promised to marry Mu-rong's sister Mu-rong Yang. Huang jilts her, and Mu-rong Yin hires Ou-yang to kill Huang. But then Mu-rong Yang hires Ou-yang to protect Huang. This is awkward, because Mu-rong Yang and Mu-rong Yin are in reality the same person. Other unrelated plot lines careen about. Among them is Ou-yang's continuing efforts to destroy a band of horse thieves. Oy-yang recruits another swordsman, a man who is going blind and wants to get home to see his wife before his sight goes completely. The swordsman is killed. Ou-yang then meets another swordsman who doesn't like wearing shoes. Oy-yang sends this man after the horse thieves, with better results. We then find out what a man must give... Written by Scott Hamilton <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Action | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

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Release Date:

17 September 1994 (Hong Kong)  »

Also Known As:

Ashes of Time  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


HKD 40,000,000 (estimated)


SGD 368,000 (Singapore)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Redux)

Sound Mix:

(Redux version)|


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In 2008, Kar Wai Wong re-edited and re-scored the film, re-releasing it under the title "Ashes of Time Redux". See more »


Ou-yang Feng: If you don't want to be turned down by people, the best way is to turn them down first.
See more »


Follows The Eagle Shooting Heroes (1993) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Memories Cut Deeper Than Swords...
11 January 2009 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

"Ashes of Time Redux" is Wong Kar Wai's venture into the martial arts genre. However, energetic action and narrative clarity take a backseat to the visual poetry that contemplates wounded hearts, loneliness and the memories of lost love that cut deeper than any sword. Best appreciated as a sensory experience, "Ashes of Time Redux" unfolds as a series of beautiful yet melancholic images like the soft brush strokes of a Chinese landscape painting. Even the sword fights are shot as swirling, hallucinatory dreamscapes. The haunting desert landscape gorgeously captured in saturated colors by cinematographer Christopher Doyle, a brooding cello score by Yo-Yo Ma and the beauty of the actors (an all-star Hong Kong cast) contribute to a movie experience that both pleases the senses and engages the heart.

13 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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