29 user 26 critic

The Era of Vampires (2003)

R | | Horror, Action | 23 May 2003 (USA)
Martial arts/horror movie from critically-acclaimed Hong Kong filmmaker Tsui Hark. In 19th century China, an evil monk awakens a nest of vampires hell-bent on devouring human life. Now, a ... See full summary »


Wellson Chin


Hark Tsui

On Disc

at Amazon





Cast overview, first billed only:
Ken Chang ... Hei
Michael Man-Kin Chow ... Fat
Suet Lam ... Kung
Kwok-Kwan Chan ... Choi
Anya ... Sasa
Rongguang Yu ... Master Jiang (as Yu Rong Guang)
Horace Lee Wai Shing Horace Lee Wai Shing ... Dragon Tang
Chunhua Ji ... Master Mao Shan (as Chun Hua Ji)
Kuan Tai Chen ... Zombie Wrangler (as Chan Koon Tai)
Lik-Chi Lee ... Butler
Wang Zhen Lin Wang Zhen Lin ... Young Maser Jiang
Na Zou Na Zou ... Ling
Yat-Fei Wong ... Undertaker
Mei-Yee Sze ... Clothing salesman
Kin-Yan Lee ... Geomancer


Martial arts/horror movie from critically-acclaimed Hong Kong filmmaker Tsui Hark. In 19th century China, an evil monk awakens a nest of vampires hell-bent on devouring human life. Now, a quartet of heroes trained in the Taoist Mao Shan school of magic and their master must use their unique powers to destroy the Vampire King and its lethal coven before it is too late. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Five heroes. A coven of vampires. A lot of bad blood.


Horror | Action

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and gore | See all certifications »



Hong Kong | Japan | Netherlands



Release Date:

23 May 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cacciatori di Vampiri See more »


Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?

Alternate Versions

The Ending has been changed on the Columbia Tristar version. See more »


Remake of The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires (1974) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

Offers nothing new to the genre... but is passable entertainment.
11 June 2006 | by BA_HarrisonSee all my reviews

When four hunters of the undead—Thunder, Wind, Rain and Lightning—are separated from their master during a battle with a King Vampire, they continue their hunt for the bloodsucker, using a magical Taoist compass to lead the way. Eventually they arrive at the home of Master Jiang, who is celebrating the marriage of his son to the beautiful Sasa.

When the groom turns up dead the next day, having been bitten by a snake, the foursome are employed to find the reptile. Master Jiang informs Sasa that she need never be parted from her husband, because the family tradition is to preserve dead relatives with wax and store them in vaults below the house; she can visit him anytime she likes!! Meanwhile, it transpires that Sasa had been married off by her brother just so that she might be able to find the whereabouts of a hoard of gold hidden somewhere in the house and pass the information on to him.

With that plan scuppered, Sasa's brother employs a 'zombie wrangler' to reanimate the waxy corpses under the house. With Master Jiang busy rounding up the zombies, he hopes to search the place for the hidden loot.

Unfortunately, for everyone involved, the King Vampire shows up at the end to cause additional mayhem and chaos and it is up to the four heroes to save the day.

Whilst this is no classic of the genre—the plot is far too messy—it does contain many elements which will prove to be of fun to fans of 80s Hong Kong vampire movies: the martial arts are of a reasonable standard, with some impressive swordplay and a bit of nifty wire-work, there is some fairly cheesy gore, and the reanimated bodies do the old hopping routine we all know and love. Best of all is the King Vampire, who has supernatural powers that enable him to suck blood at a distance and fire flames from his mouth.

My main gripe with this film is that everything is just too dark. I found myself straining to see what was going on for most of the running time. I can ignore some dodgy CGI and iffy make-up effects, but I'd like to be able to see what the hell is going on.

Despite the advances in film technology, Tsui Hark's Vampire Hunters remains an average production that does nothing to improve on the films that it emulates. Don't watch this with expectations too high, and you might find yourself enjoying it.

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