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A Chinese Ghost Story (1987)

Sien lui yau wan (original title)
Trailer
1:57 | Trailer
After a string of bad luck, a debt collector has no other choice than to spend the night in a haunted temple, where he encounters a ravishing female ghost and later battles to save her soul from the control of a wicked tree demon.

Director:

Siu-Tung Ching

Writers:

Songling Pu (novel), Kai-Chi Yuen (as Kai-Chi Yun)
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11 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Leslie Cheung ... Ling Choi San
Joey Wang ... Lip Siu Sin (as Tsu-hsien Wang)
Wu Ma ... Yin Chek Hsia
Wai Lam ... Hsia-hou
Siu-Ming Lau ... Tree Devil
Zhilun Xue ... Ching
Jing Wong ... Judge (as Jing Wang)
David Wu ... Secretary Chiu (as Dawei Hu)
Ha Huang ... Boss at Tavern
Yau Cheung Yeung Yau Cheung Yeung ... Charm Seller
Mei-Yee Sze ... Paintings Seller
Kam Cheung ... Policeman (as Kam Chiang)
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Storyline

Ning Tsai-Shen, a humble tax collector, arrives in a small town to carry out his work. Unsurprisingly, no-one is willing to give him shelter for the night, so he ends up spending the night in the haunted Lan Ro temple. There, he meets Taoist Swordsman Yen Che-Hsia, who warns him to stay out of trouble, and the beautiful Nieh Hsiao-Tsing, with whom he falls in love. Unfortunately, Hsiao-Tsing is a ghost, bound for all eternity by a hideous tree spirit with an incredibly long tongue that wraps itself round its victims and sucks out their life essence (or 'yang element')... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Hong Kong

Language:

Cantonese

Release Date:

18 July 1987 (Hong Kong) See more »

Also Known As:

A Chinese Ghost Story See more »

Filming Locations:

Hong Kong, China

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,600,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV premiere) (USA)

Sound Mix:

Mono (original release)| Dolby Digital (5.1 Surround Sound)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »

Quotes

Yin Chek Hsia: Today's a good day in hell. They must've got Tsing back.
Ling Choi Sin: Old Evil is coming to collect the bride.
Yin Chek Hsia: Scholar, it seems we've to storm hell!
See more »

Connections

Remade as A Chinese Ghost Story (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

 
masterpiece
3 June 2007 | by madhu_susSee all my reviews

I saw this movie in my childhood. And after 10 years I did not remember anything about this movie but I found out it I also don't know how I was able to find out this movie. Its my life. My all times favorite movie. My words will fall short of true meaning what I have inside for this movie. I follow this movie. It's a brilliant mix of fantasy, comedy, romance, horror, erotic, scary and martial arts. The story about the power of love is pretty touching and warm. It's a masterpiece of Hong Kong Cinema.

Sinnui Yauman, is without a doubt one of the best ghost stories ever made into film. Written by Songling Pu and directed by Siu-Tung Ching, A Chinese Ghost Story has it all. Ling Choi Sin played by Leslie Cheung is a young man down on his luck who goes in search of a monastery for lodging, deep in the woods, a place the villagers seem very afraid to go near. The trek alone is perilous with wolves, and a crazy taoist monk lives at the temple.

Ling Choi Sin meets Tsing, a beautiful and mysterious young girl who also lives nearby in a deserted temple. She is forced to seduce men for her evil mistress, but when she meets innocent Ling Choi Sin they fall in love.

Ling Choi Sin is sort of a bumbling fool but his heart is in the right place, while Tsing tries to protect him from the other spirits in the woods, he tries to protect her from the monk who is trying to kill the spirits in the woods. There's great martial arts, even a monk that breaks out into drunken song as he performs ritual taoist sword forms. The movie does a lot of traditional old martial art films acrobatics, with magic and flying through the air, leaping from tree to tree, with elegant long gowns and scarves, but the movie genuinely flows, and everything is effective.

Tsing is to be married to a evil tree monster, which cant be good, and we feel her plight in her home where we meet her sisters and stepmother who is truly not nice.

In the end they must fight a tree witch with a deadly tongue, and go with Yin deep into the heart of hell to fight a thousand year old evil to save their souls, and bring Ling's ashes back to her home for a proper burial so she may have a chance at reincarnation.

A beautiful story that truly pays attention to details. One is touched in many ways by this movie, you'll laugh, cry, and just have fun with the great martial arts and cinematography. And though at the end, Yin and Ling Choi Sin ride off into the morning sun under a enchanting rainbow, we never know if Tsing was afforded a reincarnation, but we do know her.


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