7.9/10
173,045
869 user 151 critic

Hero (2002)

Ying xiong (original title)
Trailer
1:52 | Trailer
A defense officer, Nameless, was summoned by the King of Qin regarding his success of terminating three warriors.

Director:

Yimou Zhang

Writers:

Feng Li (screenplay), Yimou Zhang (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
3,291 ( 567)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 46 wins & 47 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jet Li ... Nameless
Tony Chiu-Wai Leung ... Broken Sword (as Tony Leung Chiu-Wai)
Maggie Cheung ... Flying Snow (as Maggie Cheung Man-Yuk)
Ziyi Zhang ... Moon (as Zhang Ziyi)
Daoming Chen ... King (as Chen Dao Ming)
Donnie Yen ... Sky
Zhongyuan Liu Zhongyuan Liu ... Scholar (as Liu Zhong Yuan)
Tianyong Zheng Tianyong Zheng ... Old Servant (as Zheng Tian Yong)
Yan Qin ... Prime Minister
Chang Xiao Yang Chang Xiao Yang ... General
Yakun Zhang Yakun Zhang ... Commander (as Zhang Ya Kun)
Ma Wen Hua Ma Wen Hua ... Head Eunuch
Jin Ming Jin Ming ... Eunuch
Xu Kuang Hua Xu Kuang Hua ... Pianist
Shou Xin Wang Shou Xin Wang ... Musician
Edit

Storyline

Ancient China and the Qin Empire is out to conquer the six kingdoms. This makes its king a target for assassination. However, one man has single-handedly ensured the safety of the king, by killing the three most notorious assassins in the land. Treated as a hero, he is summoned for an audience with the king. Written by grantss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One man's strength will unite an empire See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for stylized martial arts violence and a scene of sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The lake scenes took almost three weeks to film because director Yimou Zhang insisted that the lake's surface had to be perfectly still and mirror-like during filming. Due to the natural currents, this occurred every day for only two hours starting at 10am. To adjust to this phenomenon, the filmmakers arose at 5am each day to begin five hours of preparation and set-up. See more »

Goofs

(at around 27 mins) When Nameless shows Sky's broken spear to Broken Sword and Snow, he had directed them to meet at midnight - yet when he leaves, it is clearly the middle of the day, as a building is visible in sunlight through the doorway. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Nameless: [voiceover] I was orphaned at a young age and was never given a name. People simply called me Nameless. With no family name to live up to, I devoted myself to the sword. I spent ten years perfecting unique skills as a swordsman. The King of Qin has summoned me to court, for what I have accomplished has astonished the kingdom.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The Director's Cut was 107:15 minutes, compared to the theatrical version at 96:23 minutes. See more »

Connections

References Harakiri (1962) See more »

User Reviews

 
The best martial arts film ever made
24 February 2004 | by rcropperUKSee all my reviews

Rarely have I been so astounded by such a magnificent, awe-inspiring film. If you have not yet placed your eyes on this masterpiece of Chinese cinema then I cannot recommend this film highly enough. 'Hero' is by far the best Chinese film I have ever seen, and already a firm favourite of all time.

The imagery is unparallelled, simply draw-droppingly near perfect scenes, with bold and vibrant use of colour, symbolism and scenery. The fluent flow of the storyline, the delicate direction of the sword slicing action, the Chinese cultural concepts and the emotionally charged scenes between characters combine to produce a simply remarkable achievement.

This film has a few elements from Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, but is far, far superior in every way. The sleek direction from Yimou Zhang is so perfectly done, just imagine two martial arts experts ensuing in battle against each other, defying the laws of physics as we know it, and yet following them in 360 degrees in slow motion as one deflects a droplet of rain from one sword to the other, at the same time spinning and leaping over water... simply beautiful. The attack sequences are also superbly set, with hundreds of thousands of the King's warriors in formation, simultaneously firing enough arrows into the city which literally cover the sky, in addition to the viewer being able to watch the journey of a single arrowhead aimed during this event. The build up to the attack along with the unnerving tune of a Chinese stringed instrument help you, as the audience, to become firmly engrossed in your seat.

The individual martial arts is also second to none, for myself particularly to see the distant shots of the whole battle sequence showing the true skills involved with fighting, such as footwork, perfect timing,aggression, counter attacks and defence. Jet Li shows he is truly the grand daddy of martial arts. I cannot stress enough how much you need this film in your life.

The colourful imagery imposed by the director will take your breath away with luscious, vivid, bright, wind-blown,draped backgrounds as the setting for the important progression of the story. Even the story itself is brought to the audience in such a way which ensures your undivided attention, as there are twists in the tales and hidden plots which do not develop until the end of the film.Even short individual scenes are memorable due to their sheer awesome display of skill and speed.

This film even holds a political message which is relevant to all times, especially in today's American-lead world dominance. This film has absolutely everything - including an extremely sexy young Ziyi Zhang who simply is the biggest hype to come out of china since SARS.

This film was released in 2002, but this is certainly one of my all time favourites and will probably be the best film I see all year. I have never been more enthusiastic to pursue films in this genre in my life. For more action type enthusiasts who like more gore and violence check out 'Ong Bak', but for people who appreciate a fuller, visionary piece of martial arts filming, this will leave you speechless.


261 of 354 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 869 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Miramax [United States]

Country:

China | Hong Kong | Australia

Language:

Mandarin

Release Date:

27 August 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Quentin Tarantino Presents Hero See more »

Filming Locations:

Dunhuang, Gansu, China See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$31,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$17,800,000, 29 August 2004

Gross USA:

$53,710,019

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$177,395,557
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Director's Cut) | (Theatrical Version) | (Amazon Video)

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed