It's one of those films that have good intentions but isn't perfectly executed. Very interesting adaptation of William Shakespeare's Hamlet, this is an example of taking a source material and creating something new with a vision.
2.5 Sumptuous visuals and abundant martial action (and rather overabundant bloodletting) blend with a loose structure taken from Hamlet. It's an interesting transposition and as a lover of Hamlet it captured my interest for that alone. It lacks the depth of the Bard, though, with characters proving thin, speeches and sometimes action rather contrived and with an overbearing score that distracts rather than enhances.
Shakespeare was a real artisan of his craft, and undoubtedly, this is a fantastic revenge tragedy, where even purity has its undoing due to the caustic nature of hate and vindictiveness. Couple this with some masterful choreography, and a beautiful aesthetic value, and I say, it is owed the two hours it asks for, because, fundamentally, it's a pretty flawless film. Moving and captivating, I give it 5 stars.
there's not doubt this is beautifully shot, however there's about 20 mins of story, some of it drawn from Hamlet and dragged out for over 2 hours ... no matter how pretty a film looks, it's pointless with out a good story and characterization to engage with.
Wuxia Shakespeariano (chiaramente riadattato con tocco tipico orientale), la storia è nota e diventa quasi un pretesto per sfoggiare le evoluzioni marziali del maestro Yuen Wo-Ping. Qualche falla sulla produzione (esterni in particolare) e un ritmo sfilacciato, lo trascinano verso un pubblico per lo più di appassionati.