Book Tickets

Tue 20 Aug
20:00
Sat 24 Aug
14:00
Thu 29 Aug
15:30

House of Flying Daggers 15

Part of Zhang Yimou: A Retrospective
Zhang Yimou, China, Hong Kong, 2004, 119m.

All screenings will feature a video introduction from head of programming at FIRST International Film Festival, Xiao Gu.


Given the huge critical and commercial success of Hero (2002), it is unsurprising that Zhang Yimou continued with wuxia cinema. In their final collaboration, Zhang Ziyi plays a blind dancer enlisted to help two police officers (Andy Lau and Takeshi Kaneshiro) bring down a rebel group during the declining years of the Tang Dynasty in the 9th century. The resulting love-triangle is, at times, as fiercely contested as the political machinations and deadly fight sequences.


Narratively more straightforward than Hero, House of Flying Daggers is perhaps a form of retreat back into Zhang’s comfort zone of visual aesthetics (the film was Oscar nominated for cinematography), tragic romance, and flowing performance (both dancing and combat gracefully mirroring each other). This is, then, a fitting end point for our Zhang Yimou retrospective: an experience of almost pure cinematic pleasure.  


Cast:
Takeshi Kaneshiro, Andy Lau, Zhang Ziyi

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