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The Assassin (2015)

Ci ke Nie Yin Niang (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Drama, History | 27 August 2015 (China)
Trailer
2:35 | Trailer

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A female assassin receives a dangerous mission to kill a political leader in eighth-century China.

Director:

Hsiao-Hsien Hou

Writers:

Cheng Ah (screenplay) (as Zhong Acheng), T'ien-wen Chu (screenwriter) | 3 more credits »

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 35 wins & 72 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Qi Shu ... Nie Yinniang
Chen Chang ... Tian Ji'an, governor of Weibo
Yun Zhou ... Lady Tian
Satoshi Tsumabuki ... The Mirror Polisher
Dahong Ni ... Provost Nie Feng
Mei Yong Mei Yong ... Yinniang' Mother
Zhen Yu Lei Zhen Yu Lei ... Tien Xing (Yinniang's Uncle)
Nikki Hsieh ... Huji,Tian Ji'an's concubine (as Hsieh Hsin-ying)
Ethan Juan ... Xia Jing, the aide-de-camp (as Juan Ching-Tian)
Fang-yi Sheu ... Princess Jiacheng / Princess-Nun Jiaxin
Jacques Picoux ... Lady Tian's Teacher
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Shao-Huai Chang ... Chiang Nu
Ti-Ying Hsueh
Fang Mei ... Yinniang' Grandmother
Chun Shih
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Storyline

In 8th century China, 10-year-old general's daughter Nie Yinniang is handed over to a nun who initiates her into the martial arts, transforming her into an exceptional assassin charged with eliminating cruel and corrupt local governors. One day, having failed in a task, she is sent back by her mistress to the land of her birth, with orders to kill the man to whom she was betrothed - a cousin who now leads the largest independent military region in North China. After 13 years of exile, the young woman must confront her parents, her memories and her long-repressed feelings. A slave to the orders of her mistress, Nie Yinniang must choose: sacrifice the man she loves or break forever with the sacred way of the righteous assassins. Written by Ipsith

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

china | black magic | wuxia | nun | love | See All (42) »

Genres:

Action | Drama | History

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]

Country:

Taiwan | China | Hong Kong | France

Language:

Mandarin

Release Date:

27 August 2015 (China) See more »

Also Known As:

The Assassin See more »

Filming Locations:

Wudang, Hubei Province, China See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$47,892, 16 October 2015, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$613,556, 13 December 2015
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Hou told the New York Times in an interview published on 10/07/2015 that he would break the fight scene into smaller parts as the actors weren't skilled fighters. He would also let the actors start fighting when they chose rather than directing them to fight. See more »

Quotes

Xia Jing: [subtitled version] The way of the sword is pitiless. Saintly virtues play no part in it.
See more »

Alternate Versions

In Japan, the film has been released with an additional footage contains the scene involving the Mirror Polisher (Satoshi Tsumabuki) and the wife of the Mirror Polisher (Shiori Kutsuna). This version is only available on Japanese Blu-Ray from Shochiku Home Video but without English subs. See more »

Connections

Featured in Dragon Girls (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Rohan / Duc de Rohan
Music by Pierrick Tanguy
Performed by Bagad Men Ha Tan and Doudou N'Diaye Rose
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Great if you are a film student, rather lost on you if you are not
6 December 2015 | by sideriteSee all my reviews

Birdman was a weird movie that was filled with stellar performances and nuanced scenes. It won at the Oscars because it was a film about film and theater makers, but few regular people actually got it at the level it was meant to. Even so, it was a great film on several levels.

I say this because The Assassin is kind of the same, but not giving a damn if you understand or not what is going on. The scenes are beautiful and I am sure filled with significance that grows the more Chinese you are or the more versed you are in the "art of the scene". For the regular viewer, though, is a very slow story related to Chinese characters that kind of dress the same, look the same and rarely say anything. When they do say something, they choose the minimal amount of words to convey nuanced meaning - which are then translated to English.

An adaptation of a Chinese story that has little to do with anything but the beginning of the film, this is more about the inner world of the girl assassin as portrayed by beautiful scenery and slow, calm, cricket noise filled sound. Or at least I think it is. I might be wrong.

Bottom line: great action scenes, all 4 or 5 of them. They all last for a few seconds each. Great dialogue, the 20 or so lines in all the movie. Fantastic nature shots and historically accurate decor, in the rest of the film. Not a film you will hate, but imagine you are watching people you can't distinguish one from another and that are prone to fight for a minute before they say anything... if they even do.


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