Universal acclaim - based on 31 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 394 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: In 19th century China, a magical sword given by a warrior (Chow) to his lover (Yeoh) is stolen and the quest to find it ensues. The search leads to the House of Yu where the story travels into a different direction with the introduction of a mysterious assassin and another love story.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 31
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 31
  3. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. 100
    Transcends its origins and becomes one of a kind. It's glorious, unashamed escapism and surprisingly touching at the same time.
  2. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    This is a great movie, but it needs a sales job because it's in Mandarin.
  3. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Crouching Tiger is contemplative, and it kicks ass. Or put it this way: it's a powerful film and a terrific movie.
  4. 100
    You have never seen a movie like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon because there has never been a movie like it.
  5. Magnificently nonchalant about its magic.
  6. 90
    The picture is more fun than it has a right to be.
  7. The film may be too talky for action-minded viewers and too fantastic for more serious spectators, but it brings appealing twists - including a feminist sensibility - to the venerable martial-arts genre.

See all 31 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 81 out of 119
  2. Negative: 30 out of 119
  1. Sep 2, 2013
    This is martial arts at its finest, a film where everybody is fighting for something, there is always a sense when watching a classic martial arts film that when these fight scenes happen, the artists involved appreciate and respect the skill of their enemy or counterpart, and director Ang Lee has respected this essence in this epic tale.
    Not only does he create some spectacular scenes of awe and beauty, but he also has a compelling and fluid story that equally matches the action, a feat that may seem impossible, given the ambitious, heroic and gravity-defying segments that are played out as a well choreographed drama that surprises throughout, it's a riveting fantasy but also keeps a very grounded element and human touch to drive the film forward.
    The story surrounds a very ancient and sought-after sword, owned by veteran warrior Li Mu Bai (Chow Yun-Fat) who is now passing it along as a gift, something that surprises many, including his fellow warrior and longtime love interest Yu Shu Lien (Michelle Yeoh). But the such a sought after sword is not safe anywhere and a cunning but unknown thief steals the sword, setting various pieces of the puzzle into place, we are also introduced to Jen Yu (Zhang Ziyi), who has a deep interest in the work of the warriors, but leads a very routine life and is soon to be married. She is the dark horse of the film, where it becomes clear that all is not as it seems with this mysterious girl.
    This ties in well with the spectacular scenes of action involving roof chases, wall climbing and some very impressive sequences that were all done without computer generated actions, these actors and actresses did most of their own work, and it is the seamless motion of these moments, paired with an intriguing and in depth story that make this one of the best martial arts films ever made, it has moments of grandeur but also never let's go of its humility, which combines love, loss, anger and respect,all while also showing some groundbreaking fight sequences that will truly be viewed as unmatched.
    Great performances, excellent direction and expert cinematography which creates a mesmerising film of epic proportions, it has a simple premise but is delivered on a much broader and intertwining story arc that keeps on giving right to the credits.
  2. Dec 4, 2012
    Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is arguably one of the finest movies ever made and it is truly a masterpiece in every aspect of film-making such as characterization, action sequences, screenplay, direction, cinematography, acting, the stoyline and the main theme of the movie. I don't remember how many times I have watched this movie and it always feels so great, gives me much satisfaction. Expand
  3. May 10, 2013
    This is not your typical American "Chinese" film about fighting, gangs and all that stereotypical crap. Humanism permeates this film as much as in other film by Lee Ang. All violence is token and is subjugated to a purpose. Comparing this film to Jackie Chan flicks is not unlike comparing fine cuisine in China to the supposed "Chinese food" in the US. Expand
  4. Oct 4, 2010
    This film really surprised me. It's very well made and stunning to watch. The scenery is spectacular, the film alone could be used as an advertisement for Tourism in China. The action sequences are unbelievable and the three main stars are very well cast. This is a visual feast. Expand
  5. Dec 30, 2011
    It goes from boring in the beginning all the way to the perfect martial arts/action movie. I found most of the martial arts scenes to be surprisingly ambitious. Expand
  6. May 9, 2013
    I honestly headed into this film thinking that I would not like it because of the subtitles, but it was very good. Not the best movie ever, obviously, but it was very entertaining, especially once I came to understand what the characters were representing. Ang Lee did a fantastic job directing the film and all of the actors were marvelous as well. Expand
  7. Apr 2, 2014
    The special effects killed it for me. It was painfully obvious they were using wires to jump around and it's like they didn't even bother to try to cover it up. Very disappointing and as another review said, I'd recommend House of Flying Daggers a heck of a lot more than this. Expand

See all 119 User Reviews

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