7.0/10
1,889
15 user 18 critic

The Swordsman (1990)

Xiao ao jiang hu (original title)
When a scroll containing valuable martial arts secrets is stolen from the Emperor, an army detachment is sent to recover it. Blademaster, a young martial arts expert, accidentally ends up ... See full summary »

Writers:

Louis Cha (novel), Ying Wong | 5 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

4 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Swordsman II (1992)
Action | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

With an entirely new set of actors, this movie continues the story from Swordsman (1990). Blademaster and his martial arts school decide to retire to a distant mountain. Before leaving, he ... See full summary »

Directors: Siu-Tung Ching, Stanley Tong
Stars: Jet Li, Brigitte Lin, Michelle Reis
Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A royal official accompanies a Portuguese warship to the Black Cliffs to see the site of the defeat of the evil Invincible Asia, who attained supernatural abilities by following the sacred ... See full summary »

Directors: Siu-Tung Ching, Raymond Lee
Stars: Brigitte Lin, Joey Wang, Rongguang Yu
Dragon Inn (1992)
Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

This big hit at the Sundance Film Festival had audiences cheering. Set during the Ming Dynasty, this acclaimed production tells the story of a power hungry eunuch who employs an evil sect ... See full summary »

Directors: Raymond Lee, Siu-Tung Ching, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Tony Ka Fai Leung, Brigitte Lin, Maggie Cheung
Action | Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Basically a retread of the first movie, in which the evil Tree Spirit is back with yet another ghost played by Joey Wong. The Swordsman Yen and Leslie Cheung characters are replaced by a ... See full summary »

Directors: Siu-Tung Ching, Hark Tsui
Stars: Tony Chiu-Wai Leung, Joey Wang, Jacky Cheung
Action | Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In this installment of a phenomenal saga of the super natural, four young people are caught in a tug-o-war of evil between an Imperial Wizard and a corrupt General. Outrageous special ... See full summary »

Director: Siu-Tung Ching
Stars: Leslie Cheung, Joey Wang, Michelle Reis
Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Following on from the Royal Tramp I, after discovering that the Empress is actually Lone-er, a member of the St Dragon Sect, and that she imprisoned the real empress. Lone-er is bent on ... See full summary »

Director: Jing Wong
Stars: Stephen Chow, Brigitte Lin, Chingmy Yau
Action | Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A parody of Louis Cha's novel The Eagle Shooting Heroes (thats the literal translation). Story begins with the Queen of Golden Wheel Kingdom had an affair with her cousin West Poison, and ... See full summary »

Director: Jeffrey Lau
Stars: Leslie Cheung, Brigitte Lin, Maggie Cheung
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Chinese soldiers in an ancient civil war get caught up in a fantastical quest to save the universe.

Director: Hark Tsui
Stars: Biao Yuen, Hoi Mang, Adam Cheng
Green Snake (1993)
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two snake spirits become human and learn about love and suffering. A monk discovers his own weaknesses and finds that morality is not as simple as he had thought.

Director: Hark Tsui
Stars: Maggie Cheung, Joey Wang, Wenzhuo Zhao
Royal Tramp (1992)
Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of Wilson Bond, a pimp who after saving Chan, the leader of the Heaven and Earth society, a revolutionary group, is made a member. After a botched first assignment for the group, ... See full summary »

Director: Jing Wong
Stars: Stephen Chow, Man Cheung, Chingmy Yau
Adventure | Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

China 2.200 years ago. It's the time of the Qin dynasty. The emperor seeks immortality by busily letting his alchemists search for a formula and building the famous terracotta army from the... See full summary »

Director: Siu-Tung Ching
Stars: Yimou Zhang, Li Gong, Rongguang Yu
Action | Adventure | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Late 1800s Foshan, Guangdong: Wong Fei Hung/Jet Li trains men in martial arts to help defend against foreign powers already holding Hong Kong and Macau. He looks after cute 13th Aunt, who's just returned from England. Lots of fight scenes.

Director: Hark Tsui
Stars: Jet Li, Rosamund Kwan, Biao Yuen
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Samuel Hui ... Ling Wu Chung
Cecilia Yip ... Kiddo
Jacky Cheung ... Au Yeung
Man Cheung ... Ren Ying Ying (as Sharla Cheung)
Fennie Yuen ... Blue Phoenix (as Fanny Yuen)
Siu-Ming Lau ... Ngok (as Siu Ming Lau)
Wu Ma ... Lau (as Wo Ma)
Ching-Ying Lam ... Kuk (as Ching Ying Lam)
Wah Yuen ... Zhor
Shun Lau ... The Eunuch
Ming Man Cheung Ming Man Cheung ... Luk Ta Yau
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Yiu-Sing Cheung Yiu-Sing Cheung
Shan Chin ... Lam Jan Nam
Sing Kwong Lai Sing Kwong Lai
Chi Ming Lau ... (as Chi Ming Liu)
Edit

Storyline

When a scroll containing valuable martial arts secrets is stolen from the Emperor, an army detachment is sent to recover it. Blademaster, a young martial arts expert, accidentally ends up in possession, but the plot grows complex as Japanese samurai, an illegal Chinese sect, a tribe of snake-wielding women warriors, a rival martial arts school and the leader of his own martial arts school vie for the scroll. Romantic complications also ensue, involving him with his longtime chum, daughter of the leader of his school, a Japanese woman, and two of the snake- wielding tribeswomen (Blue Phoenix and their leader, Princess Yin-Yin). Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Action | History

Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Hong Kong | Taiwan

Language:

Cantonese | Mandarin

Release Date:

27 January 1990 (Taiwan) See more »

Also Known As:

Swordsman See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

King Hu was credited as the director but he allegedly left the project midway, and the film was completed by a team led by producer Hark Tsui. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Bu wen sao (1992) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Swordsman 1: the stolen secret
30 January 2009 | by unbrokenmetalSee all my reviews

Having watched this movie for 2 hours, it felt like 3 - not that it was boring for a minute, it's simply that so much was happening! Action and drama, comedy and violence, treachery and bravery - anything you can expect from a good Wuxia movie is in here. The basic story is not complicated: a rare script describing a lost art of fighting is stolen. Some try and hide it, some want to get it back, others get in the way or mind their own career most of all. It is especially the well explained characters who make it interesting. The variety of the action may not have been intended from the start - director King Hu who created masterpieces like "Come Drink With Me", "A Touch of Zen" and "Dragon Gate Inn" left early on, so that Ching Siu Tung and others finished the shooting - but it works well. That is best illustrated in the scene on the river (33rd - 40th minute) where everybody sits together, singing a song when the ship is suddenly attacked and fights break out while the ship sinks, then one of the masters gets a "viking funeral". Happiness, action, tragedy condensed within 7 minutes, I thought I couldn't leave for a moment without missing something important. The 2 sequels take even a step further in the over-the-top action and glowing colors, but the first "Swordsman" already is very enjoyable during the whole running time.


1 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 15 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed