Watch The Emperor and the Assassin
- 2 hr 42 min
The Emperor and the Assassin is a historical drama film from 1998, directed by Chen Kaige, that tells the story of how the King of Qin, Ying Zheng (played by Li Xuejian), conquers the other six kingdoms of China and becomes the first emperor of the unified China. However, the focus of the movie is not on the military tactics or the politics of the time, but on the relationships between the three main characters: the king, his lover and counselor, Lady Zhao (played by Gong Li), and the assassin, Jing Ke (played by Fengyi Zhang).
Lady Zhao is a strategist who has been secretly working to help the King of Qin achieve his dream of unifying China. She is in love with the king, and their passionate relationship is the driving force of the narrative.
Jing Ke is a rebel from Yan, one of the kingdoms the king is planning to conquer. He is hired by Lady Zhao to kill King Zheng, but he is not a typical assassin. He is portrayed as a complex character, torn between his loyalty to his homeland and his desire to stop the king from becoming a tyrant.
The Emperor and the Assassin is a beautifully shot film that captures the grandeur and beauty of ancient China. The fight scenes and battle sequences are thrilling and well choreographed, but what truly makes the movie stand out is the emotional depth of the characters.
The performances of Gong Li, Fengyi Zhang, and Li Xuejian are all outstanding. Gong Li is particularly impressive as Lady Zhao, a woman who is both ruthless and vulnerable. She is a master strategist who will stop at nothing to help her lover achieve his dream, but she is also haunted by her past and the sacrifices she has made.
Fengyi Zhang, on the other hand, brings a quiet intensity to his role as Jing Ke. He is a man of few words, but his eyes convey a deep sense of regret and sadness. He is a tragic hero, who knows that his mission is doomed to fail, but still chooses to go through with it.
The movie does a great job of exploring the theme of power and sacrifice. The King of Qin is obsessed with unifying China, and he is willing to do whatever it takes to achieve his goal. Lady Zhao and Jing Ke are both willing to make sacrifices for their respective causes, but at what cost?
The Emperor and the Assassin is not a straightforward historical epic. It is a complex and nuanced movie that explores the human side of a pivotal moment in Chinese history. It is a story of love, loyalty, and betrayal, and it is told with great skill and sensitivity.
In conclusion, The Emperor and the Assassin is a must-see movie for anyone interested in Chinese history or historical dramas in general. It is a beautifully crafted film that combines breathtaking visuals with gripping storytelling and unforgettable performances.
The Emperor and the Assassin is a 1998 history movie with a runtime of 2 hours and 42 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2 and a MetaScore of 75.