Friday, April 29, 2016

A Touch of Zen (1971)

A Taiwanese kung fu wuxia directed by King Hu.
A poor scholar stumbles upon political intrigue in his small town. Three rebels are hiding there and are eventually revealed. He helps them to fight against an entire army.
This was alright. It's obscurity has boosted it's reputation beyond reality. The plot is good, but extremely complex and inconclusive. The characters are memorable and have good roles. I must criticize the choreography and camera-work simultaneously here with a quote: "Let's film half the fight scenes in a deep forest on a moonless night. That way everyone will see the fighters moving". There were scenes that could have been shot with the lens cap on. Mostly it was the gleam of a sword on a black background. What's going on? They must be fighting because I can hear whoosh, clang and hyaah. There were day fights and these were amazing. They included unique techniques, special weapons and lots of Hong Kong wire. Overall, not as good as it's supposed to be, but not bad. I rate this adequate.

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