120 Min | Action – Drama – Romance | July 2000
IMDB Rating: 7.9
Director: Ang Lee
Starring: Yun-Fat Chow, Michelle Yeoh, Ziyi Zhang
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon Review: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is, quite simply, a stunning film and a real breath of fresh air in a genre that was previously somewhat stagnant. Kung-fu films were on a very steady decline, with only Jet Li making a valid effort to change things around. It comes then as a great relief that Ang Lee decided to do what he did and put an entirely new slant on the genre. Tacky dubbed dialogue is out of the window and we’re back to the films original Chinese language subtitled into English. This adds a lot more to one of the films main themes, culture. While we as the Kung-fu loving public have grown used to storylines generally involving the hero’s lost mother/brother/pet goldfish, Crouching Tiger, eschews all of these stereotypes and sets about creating a really authentic atmosphere.
In Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, the fight sequences are stunningly choreographed and the ‘flying’ looks spectacular. While a big thing has been made of Chow Yun Fat and Zhang Ziyi’s treetop battle, the one for me is between Michelle Yeoh’s Shu Lien and Ziyi’s Jen. Both instances, both in the courtyard and the dojo are, quite frankly, the most astounding displays of martial arts While Bruce Lee can certainly do the real thing, and he is without doubt the original and best, Wo Ping’s sequencing of the fight scenes is truly revolutionary.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is one of the best films I have ever seen and would recommend anyone, whether or not they are interested in Kung-fu movies. This show is cinematic poetry. The music score compliments the Kungfu sequences well, the lyrical dialogues emerge charmingly. Everything fits in so darn perfectly. You have to concede to the fact that Ang Lee is undoubtedly a visionary and amazing director. Even if you don’t give a damn about any of the above, this show is a visual treat. Go watch the show for the scenery, the martial arts, the actors. The bottom line is to go and watch it because you will rarely find a better one.