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Sammo Kam-Bo Hung
Sammo Kam-Bo Hung,
Hong Kong cinema giants Derek Yee and Tsui Hark join forces in this 3D martial arts epic, about an elite swordsman who is haunted by his skill, and a challenger who aims to take his place at all costs.
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Linda Semans Donovan
During the warlords era in China, a village located in rural area called Pucheng fell into dangerous situation when its government allocated all its military force to the front line, the cruel commandant Cao from the enemy troops arrived the village and killed the innocent, the guardians of Pucheng were desperate to fight against Cao for justice and to protect their homeland.
This is an interesting Martial arts movie in that it follows a tradition used by many Martial Arts producers to copy old Sergio Leone type movies.
The lone traveller enters a village where evil outsiders set out to destroy the town and kill many ordinary innocent people. A clash of good over evil where the town's folk eventually pull together to defeat their attackers.
It has all been done before and the irony is that Sergio Leone was himself copying from the early samurai movies when he produced his now famous spaghetti westerns. This movie very much copies that mould and even the background music is reminiscent of those old Sergio type westerns.
The story is good and the characters are interesting. However the evil of the Louis Koo character is shockingly evil and there are some unexpected moments. For me the weakness was the two friends (or were they brothers?) I just could not believe that one could go along with the unnecessary evil of the warlords son, but apart from that they were good characters.
The Martial arts was of a high standard, as you would expect with the great Sammo Hung directing the action scenes, and Ching Wan Lau was outstanding as the whip cracking Sheriff. Eddie Peng is very good in his Clint Eastwood role. All the other supporting characters were well acted and the Direction was excellent. There is some CGI but this is not overused as it is in many modern movies of this genre.
So over all not a bad Martial Arts movie.
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