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Butterfly Sword (Special Edition)
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Top Customer Reviews
Despite a strong cast and beautiful scenery, the movie ultimately disappoints. One saving grace for this film is Donnie Yen. Though his great talents were wasted in his fight scenes due to over-use of wires, poor camera work and disastrous editing, he managed to compensate by putting more heart and warmth into his character, the ever serious but sincere Yip, who is the only likable character in the film. Too bad we have not seen Donnie Yen as often as we see Jet Li or Jackie Chan. A much better actor than Jet Li and extremely gifted in martial arts, he exuberates a certain charisma that simply draws people to him, either in a major role or a supporting role. Michelle Yeoh on the other hand is marvelous. She conveys emotions just as effectively as she does swirls and kicks. The scene where she glides through the air between two bamboo trees is one of few good action scenes in the movie, but it perhaps is one of the most graceful and elegant scenes I have seen in any martial art films.
Two stars for Michelle and Donnie.
I did not like the movie for a few reasons. This movie is really for people that like these kinds of films. Personally, I tend to like lots of martial arts movies, especially those with Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung, Yuen Biao, Jet Li, Michelle Yeoh, etc. I loved the cast, and I thought they did a good job in this movie. However, the action is what got to me. The movie has too much wirework (or wirefu) and blood. If you enjoyed movies like Yuen Woo Ping & Tsui Hark's Iron Monkey, Jet Li & Michelle Yeoh & Yuen Woo Ping's Tai Chi Master (aka Twin Warriors), and Michelle Yeoh & Anita Mui & Maggie Cheung's Heroic Trio, then I think you will enjoy this movie. If you are into those kind of movies, you will love this. However, if you just want to see it because it is martial arts, and this is not your type, then obviously don't get it.
The cinematography is rich, the pacing is quick...There's plenty for the eye to see and for the mind to absorb. In fact, almost too much the first time round; which is why you need to see it at least a second time to really appreciate it. Also, it may help to get a plot synopsis/summary (I would recommend Pete's review off the "Yes Madam" web site) to know what to watch for.
On the other hand, one could just look upon it as eye candy, give up trying to understand what is actually going on (a love square amidst schemes to become master of the martial arts world) and just prepare to be blown away on a purely visual basis...Although that would be only half the experience, it would still be enjoyable enough for many Hong Kong movie fans and fans-to-be (if you crave something very different from American movies, this is it!).
On a cautionary note: The action sequences feature "wire fu". This is NOT Jackie Chan -- not necessarily better or worse but definitely different...and actually way fantastically weirder (After this, "Supercop" is s-o tame!)!!! In fact, it might come closer to "Excalibur"...I KID YOU NOT.
Most recent customer reviews
Donnie Yen is the only reason to get this film really. Michelle Yeoh's peformance is that of a bitter jealous "adopted" sister. Read morePublished on June 5 2004 by Taddese Zicke
The fighing scenes are fast, furious and violent. For example, in one scene, a fighter pushed his sword and his whole body completely through the chest of his oppenent. Read morePublished on May 2 2004
Excellent in action, acting, direction, screenplay... I can't remember how many times I have watched it.Published on Dec 10 2003 by albonga
Butterfly and Sword is a very effective kung fu film set in a fantasy period with heavy reliance on wirework to give the actors absurd supernatural powers. Read morePublished on Nov. 22 2002
It is one of the better wuxia pien's I have seen. Very good acting and an exciting story. I liked the fight scenes a lot too. Read morePublished on April 5 2002
This is a pretty fun movie, with lots and lots of crazy action, and some pretty well acted scenes, but it is unbelievably confusing, so you never totally get behind the characters. Read morePublished on Jan. 11 2002 by Tensegrity Dan
Lots of nice costume design and a good fight scene with a kwan dao as the primary weapon, but beyond that, this film is more form than substance. Read morePublished on Aug. 3 2001 by somebody nobody
This movie is one of the greatest Martial Arts movies I've ever seen. The action is fast paced, and the romantic story of 2 hired swords, one who wants nothing more than to spend... Read morePublished on Aug. 3 2001 by Yamcha
If you're not on speed, good luck staying with this one. Yes, there are countless sets and stages filled with beautiful imagery. Yes, the actors seem to be thoroughly in character. Read morePublished on June 19 2000 by Amazon Lover
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