Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Sik Siu Loong, Xie Miao
Genres: Indie & Art House
Studio: Tai Seng Entertainment Release Date: 01/30/2007 Run time: 90 minutes
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A Complex Tale of Treachery, Romance, and Honor
Erika Borsos | Gulf Coast of FL, USA | 07/31/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This riveting film depicts the latter years of the Ming Dynasty and is filled with expert twists and turns of the plot keeping the viewer's attention in full focus from start to finish. The breath-taking artistically filmed scenery and colorful period costumes add a magical quality to the superbly choreographed martial arts fighting which flows naturally within the drama and plot of the film. There is a Lion Dance/Competition sponsored by a wealthy patron held in the city Zhao Qing. The event is very popular among the locals who relish watching the best martial arts fighters compete to win the golden ball. A very well regarded martial arts school and its opposition are the two main contenders for this great honor. The competition is so fierce that illegal gambling is encouraged and sponsored ... to the point of deliberately placing the odds in the favor of one side.
The best fighter of the Liu School of Martial Arts is ambushed and killed. His brother tries to discover who murdered his brother, which was labelled a suicide by a local investigation. The governor's daughter learned martial arts for health reasons and she gets involved trying to improve her skills. Wu, the wealthy patron ensures the gambling scheme is set up in his favor. The second best fighter of the Liu School, Ji Zhi, is viewed as a fierce contender and therefore set up as a thief and arrested ... Wu's daughter Rong, who is blind had attended the previous competition games with her servant. Rong is in love with Ji Zhi and has been for a long time, since childhood. Unexpectedly, the governor's daughter participates in martial arts fighting practice, demonstrating extraordinairy skills, disguised as a young man ... but she is discovered. Tension develops between Rong and the governor's daughter as each has their eyes and hearts set on winning Ji Zhi ...
The two best fighters of the main competing local martial arts schools secretly meet. They vow to be "worthy opponents". They will participate and fight only if the competition is fair and just. Meanwhile, Wu, Rong's father arranges for her to be examined by the best eye doctor of the province in order to cure her blindness. It is exactly around the time when the Lion Competition will take place. Rong manages to convince her father she needs to stay and witness the Lion competition. Unexpectedly, she is nearly kidnapped, by a stranger, someone she knew in the distant past. This event ties together many of the complex plots within the story. This surprise provides a creative and satisfactory twist to an already complex story. Naturally the plot thickens and he is ... of course, discovered and eliminated by Ji Zhi. The Governor's daughter is confronted in a most unexpected manner regarding her romantic feelings for Ji Zhi ... the dilemma is resolved ... without hurt feelings on anyone's side. This film has much depth and easy to miss subplots ... making it almost necessary to view more than once. It is quite amazing to discover how much one missed during the first viewing ... Anyone who enjoys this DVD would likely also appreciate The White Dragon. Erika Borsos [pepper flower]"