A Touch Of Zen Review

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A young man discovers a young woman hiding out in an abandoned fort and has to contest with the forces pursuing her.


Best known as the prime inspiration for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, King Hu's swordplay epic is a classic in its own right.

Set during the Ming Dynasty, the action revolves around a world-weary scholar's bid to prevent a corrupt court official from seizing the female fugitive who can expose his crimes.

Hu combines ancient philosophy with the aesthetics of the samurai and martial arts genres. His choreographic ingenuity is breathtaking, with the famous bamboo battle and the haunted forest sequence only being topped by the sheer cinematic mastery of the finale, with its silhouettes and gouts of golden blood.

All the lunacy and high-flown imagination you could hope for.