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From legendary action director Tsui Hark and the creators of international smash hit Detective Dee - Mystery Of The Phantom Flame comes the captivating tale of Dee Renjie's beginnings in ... See full summary »
In the early 1600's, the Manchurians have taken over sovereignty of China and established the Ching Dynasty. While many nationalist revolts still brew within the martial artists' community, the newly set-up government immediately imposes a Martial Arts Ban, forbidding the practice of martial arts altogether in order to gain control and order. Wind Fire (Sun Hong-Lei), a surrendered military official from the previous dynasty, sees this as an opportunity to make a fortune for himself by helping to execute the new law. Greedy, cruel, and immoral, Wind Fire ravages the North-western China, and his next goal is to attack the final frontier, Martial Village. Fu Qingzhu, a retired executioner from the previous dynasty, feels the need to put a stop to this brutality and sets out to save Bowei Fortress. He brings Wu Yuanyin and Han Zhiban from the village with him to Mount Heaven to seek help from Master Shadow-Glow, a hermit who is a master of swords and leads a group of disciples of great ... Written by
A powerful and truly brilliant piece of modern cinema.
"Seven Swords" is a truly epic wuxia film. Not merely a showcase for the physical talent, this film has a heart and soul. Its themes run deep and leave a lasting impression on the viewer. The story grabs its audience and doesn't let go until everything is resolved. There is not a whole lot to complain about this film. It has a great story and great characters, is artfully thematic, keeps a sense of humor, and still has room for some great fight scenes.
This time around Tsui Hark's focusing a little more on characters, sweet action, and a little story development, pushing the film two two-and-a-half-hours. Unlike other long martial arts films, this one somehow never gets boring. Obviously it does have its slow moments, but with the cool fight scenes and interesting characters, you tend to forgot how much time has passed.
Set in the early 1600's, the film follows a group of poor villagers as they get the aid of 5 skilled swordsmen to help fight against an evil general and his army of bounty hunters. All of a sudden a new government has been established banning any use of martial arts and evicting anyone who's practicing them. This is rather just in order to prevent any contingency of uprising and the ultimate overthrow of the actual empire. In the vein of the classic 50's Japanese classic Seven Samurai, the skilled swordsmen and a couple brave villagers fend against the army and hope to take down the new law. The plot thickens as we learn that as they flee the village there may be a traitor among them not only leaving clues to the enemy but also is about to impair well-established self-righteousness of the peaceful society. Which brings up the relevant question which unified group of people can survive, their enemy? or the villagers themselves? I was really astonished by what was accomplished here. The romance, characters and extremely well shot action. But what truly caught my attention was the quality and artistic creativity of the quite genius editing. I think to admit that this is just another addition to the previous classic films featuring similar main theme, 7 warriors defending the hapless villagers, i dare to say that this film can rank as the very best of them. Maybe still not on the worldwide scale today but i fairly believe this film will once slowly grow up as one of the greatest masterpieces of the world cinema.
If you have a passion for cinema, this film is a gift. If you "just like going to the movies", then this film will cure your insomnia. Better to spend your cash on Last Holiday and let true cinema nerds like me take in this masterpiece.
Thank you Mr.Hark. I look forward to your next masterpiece... a 15 years from now?!
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