Directed by Zhang Yimou • 2004 • China, Hong Kong
Starring Takeshi Kaneshiro, Andy Lau, Zhang Ziyi
Zhang Yimou combines breathless wuxia action and rapturous romance into a dazzling visual spectacle. The year is 859 AD, and China’s once-flourishing Tang Dynasty is in decline. Unrest is raging throughout the land, and the corrupt government is locked in battle with rebel armies that are forming in protest. The largest and most prestigious of these is the House of Flying Daggers, which is growing ever more powerful. Ordered to capture the faction’s mysterious new leader, two police deputies, Leo (Andy Lau) and Jin (Takeshi Kaneshiro), hatch an elaborate plan. Jin will pretend to be a lone warrior called Wind and rescue the beautiful, blind revolutionary Mei (Ziyi Zhang) from prison, earning her trust and escorting her to the secret headquarters of the House of Flying Daggers. The plan works, but to their surprise, Jin and Mei fall deeply in love on their long, perilous journey.