The Romance of Book & Sword

Film, Drama

Time Out says

A two-part historical epic, filmed all over China, centred on conflict between the Manchu Emperor Qianlong and a resistance group who are fighting to restore Chinese rule. (Echoes of contemporary debates about the future of Hong Kong under Chinese sovereignty are not entirely coincidental.) This is the nearest thing in present-day Chinese cinema to the spectacles that King Hu made in the 1960s: prodigious use of locations, rousing action climaxes, shameless exoticism, and set pieces that flaunt it because they've got it. Part II gets rather bogged down in folksy frippery about a Muslim tribe in Xinjiang, but the breathtaking act of treachery at the end erases any doubts about Hui's vision and seriousness of purpose.


Release details

181 mins

Cast and crew

Ann Hui
Louis Cha, Ann Hui
Zhang Duofu
Da Shichang
Liu Gui
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