More in-depth film festival coverage than any other website!
Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
Advertisement

Overall Rating
4.29

Awesome: 39.29%
Worth A Look53.57%
Average: 3.57%
Pretty Bad: 3.57%
Total Crap: 0%

3 reviews, 10 user ratings


Latest Reviews

Fortress, The (2017) by Jay Seaver

MFA by Jay Seaver

You Only Live Once by Jay Seaver

November (2017) by Jay Seaver

Friendly Beast by Jay Seaver

Foreigner, The (2017) by Jay Seaver

Tom of Finland by Rob Gonsalves

Happy Death Day by Jay Seaver

78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene by Jay Seaver

Death Note: Light Up the New World by Jay Seaver

subscribe to this feed


Emperor and the Assassin, The
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by Greg Muskewitz

"History without a cut-and-dry lesson plan."
4 stars

What could have been no more than a cut-and-dry history lesson soporifically disguised as a costume drama, director/co-writer Chen Kaige livens up and presents his film like a teacher who is truly excited and intrigued by the lesson plan for the subject.

***************************
The Emperor and the Assassin. What could have been no more than a cut-and-dry history lesson soporifically disguised as a costume drama, director/co-writer Chen Kaige livens up and presents his film like a teacher who is truly excited and intrigued by the lesson plan for the subject. Circa 200s B.C. hardly makes for a rousing call to arms, but the lectureless structure is what removes pretense from the filmmaker. Kaigeís nose-poking into the treacherous and beguiling nature of what made his protagonists and antagonists (some of which are one in the same) tick works the same trick on the interest level of the storyline. This isnít dirt-digging in the vein of supermarket tabloids, but the immediate points of matricide/patricide/genocide carry the same gossipy effect and attitude. Often The Emperor and the Assassin plays to the beat of a Star Wars spectacle (granted, on a much smaller and innocuous scale) on a basis of sword fights, elaborate and decorative vestments and exaggerated hairstyles. And given that, itís unforgettable that Lucas originally drew his influences from the Asian line up, most notably from Akira Kurosawa and his The Hidden Fortress. I canít say The Emperor and the Assassin is the missing key to the chain of evolution, but they share a branch on the family tree. (Hierarchy is a completely different issue, and even an ape can figure that one out.) Inevitably, Kaige cannot erase all the lines of the convoluted and arcane, but the film manages to remain accessible without much alienation.

With Gong Li, Zhang Fengyi and Li Xue Jian.

Final Verdict: B+.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=235&reviewer=172
originally posted: 01/14/02 12:05:07
[printer] printer-friendly format  

User Comments

9/07/04 W Stewart A movie that captured your attention and awed you with its vastness of imagery, scenes 5 stars
6/20/03 Sammy kinda drags in some places but is overall a good movie 4 stars
2/27/02 Gracy Lionheart A movie that leaves you going huh? But in a good way. 4 stars
12/09/01 Karen Good...too much melodrama!!!!!!!!!!:P 4 stars
6/14/01 Poxont Historically relevant, rich in human emotion. 5 stars
6/09/01 Genghizkhan66 Stunning epic, visually compelling ...right down there along the realm of my ancestors. 5 stars
4/30/01 y2mckay The movie that wouldn't end - nearly 3 weary hours for an utterly forgettable ending. 2 stars
10/20/00 Viking Even better than Gladiator !!!!! 5 stars
12/19/99 Mr Showbiz Chen Kaige directs this lavish, yet uninvolving period epic about a young Chinese warlord. 3 stars
12/19/99 allyjack A compelling epic...staggering. 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
Note: Duplicate, 'planted,' or other obviously improper comments
will be deleted at our discretion. So don't bother posting 'em. Thanks!
Your Name:
Your Comments:
Your Location: (state/province/country)
Your Rating:


Discuss this movie in our forum

USA
  17-Dec-1999 (R)

UK
  N/A

Australia
  05-Oct-2000


Directed by
  Kaige Chen

Written by
  Kaige Chen
  Peigong Wang

Cast
  Gong Li
  Li Xuejian
  Zhang Fengyi
  Sun Zhou
  Lu Xiaohe
  Wang Zhiwen



Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
eFilmCritic.com: Australia's Largest Movie Review Database.
Privacy Policy | HBS Inc. | |   

All data and site design copyright 1997-2017, HBS Entertainment, Inc.
Search for
reviews features movie title writer/director/cast