Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Legend of the Black Scorpion

(American title)

Aka The Banquet (Ye yan)

Chinese wuxia drama film directed by Xiaogang Feng, 2006

A luxurious martial arts spectacle and lavishly produced, visually sumptuous period film that brings the story of Hamlet to the Ten Kingdoms era of Chinese history. Starring Ziyi Zhang as the seductive yet wrathful Empress Wan, You Ge as Emperor Li,  Daniel Wu as Prince Wu Luan and  Xun Zhou as Qing Nu.
A loose adaptation of Hamlet, The Night Banquet is set in an empire in chaos. The Emperor, the Empress, the Crown Prince, the Minister and the General all have their own enemies they would like to finish off at a night banquet.

In 907 AD, the Tang Dynasty is in tatters; infighting snarls the imperial family. Crown Prince Wu Luan loves Little Wan, but his father takes her as his Empress. Wu Luan goes into exile, studying dance and music. His uncle murders his father, taking throne and Empress; uncle sends assassins to kill Wu Luan. The Crown Prince eludes death and comes to court. The Emperor arranges for Little Wan's coronation and dispatches Wu Luan to a distant land; he then calls for a midnight banquet on the 100th day of his rule. Poison, treachery, Wu Luan's return, and the love of the innocent Qing for Wu Luan set up the final entanglements. No Fortinbras or Horatio lay the dead to rest. Written by

The Legend of Black Scorpion was Hong Kong’s 2006 submission for Best Foreign Film at the Academy Awards. China submitted The Curse of the Golden Flower.

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