Hark Tsui

Hark Tsui – Do ma daan AKA Peking Opera Blues (1986)

In the wake of China’s first democratic revolution, three beautiful, high-spirited young women from very different backgrounds cross paths in a common quest for liberation. Fateful circumstances find the three joining forces as they muster the courage and fortitude to become female warriors. Read More »

Hark Tsui – Shang Hai zhi yen AKA Shanghai Blues (1984)

AMG: Shanghai Blues combines romantic comedy, slapstick, music, and several classic coincidences (a favorite ploy of director and writer Tsui Hark to tell the story of a man (Kenny Bee) and a female dancer (Sylvia Chang) who meet under a Shanghai bridge in 1937 as they seek shelter from the Japanese bombing of the city. They are immediately drawn to each other and make a pact to meet under the bridge again when the war has ended. But their plans are thwarted and ten years later, the man gets an apartment in Shanghai (where he works as a musician, songwriter, and clown) unaware that the dancer — for whom he has been searching — is his downstairs neighbor. Meanwhile, a young, bubbly woman makes friends with the dancer at the club where she performs and inadvertently causes a considerable mix-up that at first looks fated to keep the star-crossed lovers apart. Read More »

Hark Tsui – Ying hung boon sik III jik yeung ji gor AKA A Better Tomorrow 3 (1989)

From StompTokyo.com:
The first film in our Chow pow-wow, A Better Tomorrow 3, is a prequel to John Woo’s two breakthrough crime dramas, A Better Tomorrow and A Better Tomorrow 2. It tells the story of how Mark Gor gained the Mark Gor look and the Mark Gor attitude. Everybody remembers Mark Gor, right? He was the wise-ass friend of Ti Lung in the original A Better Tomorrow, the one who was rendered lame while on a mission of revenge, and then died one of the silliest cinematic deaths we’ve seen a Honk Kong actor die. Since Bruce Lee in Marlowe, anyway. Read More »

Hark Tsui – Shu Shan – Xin Shu shan jian ke AKA Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain (1983)

In the fifth century, constant civil war scars western China. To escape death, Ti, a young scout, jumps through a crevice in the Zu mountains where he meets and becomes the apprentice of Ting Yin, a spiritual man with great fighting powers. They encounter a monk, Hsiao Yu, also a great fighter and a good man, but unfriendly to Ting. Because Ting and Hsiao can’t work together, it falls to Ti to team with Hsiao’s acolyte Yi Chen: they have 49 days to travel far to claim two swords that are the only weapons that can defeat the Blood Demon, who has decided the wreak havoc on the world. They get help from Long Brows, Ting falls in love with a countess, and civil war still rages. Read More »

Hark Tsui – Die bian aka The Butterfly Murders (1979)

From “HK New Wave Cinema”

Against Tradition, Against the System, Against Society

After Golden Blade Sentimental Swordsman, Tsui joined the film industry. His debut
work was The Butterfly Murders (1979). Set in Shen’s castle, the plot focuses on an
investigation of the ‘butterfly killers’, who have committed a string of murders. Valiant
men from various places have also been killing each other. A writer-reporter, Fang
Hongye, is writing about all of these incidents to anthologize them in a book entitled
Diary of Hongye. In the process, Fang discovers that all of the killings have been
initiated by the master of the castle, as part of his plan to become the king of wulin
(the martial arts world). Read More »