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House of the Flying Daggers

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House of the Flying Daggers

shí miàn mái fú


2004China, Hong Kong, Ukraine (only the places)

Runtime – 119 min

Director: Yimou Zhang
Script: Feng Li, Bin Wang, Yimou Zhang
Producers: Yimou Zhang and William Kong
Executive producer: Weiping Zhang
Music: Shigeru Umebayashi
Special thanks to: Philip Lee and Yatming Tang (as Tang Yat Ming)
the film is shot in the bright memory of Anita Mui, who died of cervical cancer.


Image hosted by Takeshi Kaneshiro – captain Jin (or Wind)
Andy Lau – captain Leo - Free Image Hosting Ziyi Zhang – Xiao Mei
Image hosted by Dandan Song – Yee


In times of the Tang dynasty in China the organization called the House of the Flying Daggers opposed the government – this organization was sort of Robin Hood like. Policemen performed by Takeshi Kaneshiro and Andy Lau (Jin and Leo) made the decision to destroy the organization. After the death of its leader the rumors spread that his blind daughter had disappeared. That was why Leo sends Jin on the undercover mission to investigate the Xiao Mei’s (Ziyi Zhang) connection to the House of the Flying Daggers. Thus Xiao Mei is arrested and the cops make up the idea to use her to find the organization leaders because she is so much alike to the missing daughter of the dear leader of the shí miàn mái fú. But everything appears to be much more complicated than it seemed at the first glance…

Interesting facts about the film:

  • Anita Mui was invited to perform the main part in the film and that was supposed to be her last work in the movies. But she died on the 30 of December, 2003. That was why Zhang Yimou made some corrections in the plot of the film to honor her memory. He dedicated this whole story to that beautiful actress and singer.
  • The snow scene was shot in one of the Resort Parks in The Carpathians in Ukraine. It was a real happiness and so unexpected surprise for the actors but at the same time it was a real challenge for their strength when it began snowing for it was not planned to make the shots with the snow. So it was real and absolutely sudden.
  • Zhang Ziyi had been living with a blind girl for a month to perform the role of Xiao Mei and to learn the behavior.
  • During the shooting of the scene with the horse Takeshi Kaneshiro hurt his knee.
  • During the final swordfight Takeshi Kaneshiro and Andy Lau were using the real swords. As Zhang Yimou said it should have been done so to make the scene more realistic. As was said in one of the articles: Luckily the did not maim each other.
  • A part of the Han Dynasty poem written by Li Yannian is in the film.

Here it is:

A rare beauty in the north,
she's the finest lady on earth.
A glance from her, the whole city falls;
a second glance leaves the whole nation in ruins.
There exists no city or nation,
that has been more cherished
Than a beauty like this.

Chinese transliteration:

Běifāng yǒu jiārén, juéshì ér dúlì.
Yí gù qīng rén chéng, zài gù qīng rén guó.
Nìng bù zhī qīng chéng yǔ qīng guó.
Jiārén nán zài dé.





What attracts in the movie?

One can surely say that this film is a wonderful costume story that shivers your imagination and gives no rest to you even after a long time. Though this is not every thing one can name as the treasure of the film. That movie is hardly to be called historic drama, more the outstandingly shot and directed beautiful love story. A love feeling that should not have happened. But what love should? Anyways, that is a wonderful film the colors of which would be in your mind for quite a while after you have watched it. Especially remarkable are the scenes with the manner dance, the forest bath, the scene on the field when the Wind was gathering flowers for Mei and the scene of the final fight. The music in the film is more that beautiful – it reflects everything – the music is the feelings and emotions of the characters, is the weather change, and even the emotions that you feel – maybe that is because of the sound track itself. Since the beginning of the film and until its end you sometimes do not even realize what keeps you right there watching. Even if you do not like the actors you would say that film attracts you with something magical and fabulous.


What gives you the cool emotion in the film?

The first thing that you hear to make you a bit smiling about the film is the characters speech – some times naïve… or maybe that is all about the interpretation, because it is rare to watch it in the original. More if you have no knowledge in Chinese. One more flaw – the plot of the film is very simple. Or maybe that is even good. It is hard to call it a flaw because the film is a wonderful and simple love story.


Download from: TORRENTS.RU - for those who saves traffic and memory (Russian): 1,99 Gb
Download from: TORRENTS.RU - for those who doe not need to save traffic or memory (Russian): 5,37 Gb

Author of the article: mikomi
Thankful fot the links and some material to the community Dreams_of_Gackt
With the great and humble gratitude to

Additional sources:
Shi mian mai fu -
Category: TK Movies reviews | Added by: mikomi (05.03.2009)
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