The Assassin

"An enchanting cinematic work of art that turns a martial arts drama into a meditation on beauty and empathy." - Spirituality & Practice

“Every perfectly composed picture tells a story in Hou Hsiao-hsien’s transfixing take on the wuxia action genre, set in the 9th century. Shu Qi’s title killer is a princess, skilled at swordplay but capable of mercy. Abducted as a child by an exiled nun (Zhou Yun) and schooled in lethal justice, the princess must perform a vigilante act with serious family implications.

“This Cannes 2015 director’s prize winner is resplendent with masterful mise-en-scène and images you won’t soon forget, captured by Mark Lee Ping Bin’s luminous lens. Lethal intent is at hand, but Taiwanese master Hou’s kinetic yet serene approach to martial arts is like watching a fast-moving river. It’s less about the plot and body count and more about contemplating a story rich in symbols and multiple meanings.” - Toronto Star


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