The old regime has fallen. Civilian protest groups formed in its wake. The largest is House of Flying Daggers. They care for the people in Robin Hood fashion. Law enforce-ment want them gone and have killed their leader. Only for another to emerge.
Top priority is given to discovery of this person’s identity. Assassination will demoralize the entire organization. Thus leaving them vulnerable to annihilation.
They establish their cover by having Mei (Zhang Ziyi) arrested. The blind dancer is rumored to be the daughter of the deceased leader. Next up the good cop bad cop routine. Lui grills her for hours. She refuses to talk. He says torture is in the morning. Wind aka Jin breaks out of jail. They live on the run.
Lui utilizes his men. They never intended to bring the couple in. It was an act to convince Mei the police now consider them to be dangerous criminals. Complications arise. Jin is falling in love with her. A general has taken over the investigation. He read Lui’s reports and decided the glory must be his alone.
Lui tells Jin the latest. Both realize the general will kill Jin to get to Mei. Lui does whatever he can. Mei and Jin are nearly killed in an ambush. Surprisingly members of the House of Flying Dagger save them. Jin and Lui are captured. All three are taken to HQ.
Jin was being played. Lui and Mei are undercover HoFD. Their trap wiped out the general and his army. Lui and Mei were lovers before this assignment three years ago. He’s dreamed of being reunited with her. But she’s fallen in love with Jin.
The HoFD leader gives Mei an ultimatum. Either she kills Jin or they both die. She frees Jin and plans to go into hiding. Lui goes ballistic. He attacks and mortally injuries Mei. Jin and Lui do their best to kill each other. Lui then tricks Mei into committing suicide. He leaves Jin crying over her body to resume his undercover role.
The good: Brilliant and beautiful. The director and cast must work together again. The love triangle captured our hearts. Love the cinematography, costumes and set designs.
The bad: What more must a guy do for love? Lui got a raw deal. Mei should’ve told him the truth years ago. Think Jin was more like Wind than he let on. Lui should’ve realized something would happen between Jin and Mei.
The ugly: No 2004 Oscar for best foreign film.
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