Tuesday, November 9, 2021

The Emperor's Sword - Movie Review / Home Video Release

The Movie: The Emperor's Sword

The Director: Yingli Zhang, Haonan Chen

The Cast: Fengbin Mu, Yilin Hao, Qihang Zhao, Qiyu Yang

The Story: During a time of peace, a deadly sword that bestows great power upon its wielder was divided and hidden. After the emperor dies, a deranged rebel seizes power and stages a massacre during his search for the blade, leaving only one survivor. Now, the young daughter of a great general is all that stands between a tyrant and his quest for domination.

The Review:
Sometimes I wonder how many of these period piece, sword and arrow movies that control the fate of dynasties in ancient China can be churned out but you know what. I'm here for all of it and especially when they're done in stylish and grand fashion like this movie is. Chinese cinema has a way of churning these films out year after year and they are more often than not engaging spectacles that are tailor made for a big screen, cinematic experience.

This movie falls along those lines with a look that is bold with fight scenes that are well choreographed and a story that is pretty much what you expect it to be. Is it groundbreaking or earth shattering or game changing? Probably not. It may not even really stand out within the genre although that doesn't take anything away from it being a fun movie to watch with plenty of the fight scenes and high flying action you could ever ask for.

The filmmakers do keep things grounded in a sense of normal reality rather than employing the high wire techniques and CGI antics that similar films employ to get over and it really doesn't need them. The performances are solid, the action is well choreographed, and the story works well enough for the genre. All the standard characters and story lines are here with highly skilled war veterans, scheming politicians, and ladies who are anything but damsels in distress.

The Blu-ray comes with the feature film in 16:9 widescreen format with DTS-HD Master Audio sound. Not much to speak of as far as special features with trailers for this film and a few others being the only additional content unless you count scene selection as well. The movie itself looks and sounds great on Blu-ray so if that's all you need then definitely one to add to your collection.

The Verdict:
The Emperor's Sword has all the action and adventure you could ask for all wrapped up in a slick, glossy looking package with a story that is on par for this genre. Limited features on the disc make this a pretty basic package but worth a look especially for collectors.

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