Coming to Blu-ray from director Derek Yee and Well Go USA Entertainment is a beautiful story of love, revenge and redemption with “Sword Master.”
Ah Chi (Lin Gengxin) is a man with a past that has led him to live poorly through life. Ending up at a brothel, he becomes the handyman in order to have food to eat and a place to live.
Yen Shisan (Peter Ho) is a skilled assassin who has a path as well, to find anyone who is as good with the sword as he is. When he discovers there isn’t anyone, he decides to search out a beautiful place to drink himself into a grave he has picked out for himself.
Looking for the love of her life, Chiu-Ti (Jiang Yiyan) wants to find the man who has stolen her heart. Along with Cult (Norman Chiu), they look everywhere there is a rumor about the man known as Hsieh Shao-Feng.
Working in the brothel, Ah Chi meets Sweetie (Jiang Mengjie), a young woman who is taking the survival of her family onto herself. Ah Chi notices her right away yet doesn’t know yet her situation.
When Ah Chi sees her again with family, he clearly knows in his heart that not only is Sweetie a good person but comes from a family and village of caring people. When Chiu-Ti and the army come through to smoke out Hsieh Shao-Feng, everything becomes clear and a fight is inevitable.
It is who fights and how that happens that surprises all!
Gengxin as Ah Chi is a man who clearly is dealing with a painful past. Not wanting to pick up a weapon in any way, he meets someone who will teach him that a weapon doesn’t always have to be the way to win. Stuck in emotional quicksand, he finally comes to terms with his past and fights for what is right — as he was meant to.
Ho as Shisan is strong, funny, smart, and his skills are quick and at the same time doesn’t suffer fools much. Trying to bring his life some meaning he befriends Ah Chi hoping this is the person who he can give all his martial arts secrets too. His performance is surprising in the fast paced changes and yet the ending left me saying “oh no, do you have to?”
Yiyan as Chiu-Ti is a woman that could easily be considered seriously disturbed with serious broken heart syndrome. Wanting her love back, Chiu-Ti will stop at nothing including hurting others to get him back. With the help of Chiu as Cult, there are several triangles here that keep the story moving fast.
Mengjie as Sweetie is such a charming young woman and the fact that she ends up in a brothel doesn’t change anything about her character. Learning that she is taking care of her family brings such depth to this character and rooting for her is a must. I enjoyed her performance thoroughly and along with Paul Heiching as her doting and funny mother and Ma Jingjing as brother Miao, this is a sweet family that broke my heart.
Well Go USA Entertainment is an amazing company that brings the best of Action and Independent films from around the world. There format includes theaters, digital, cable and VOD along with Blu-ray. For more of what they have to offer go to www.wellgousa.com.
“Sword Master” is a film rich in colorful and stunning costumes, amazing martial art sequences and characters that are filled with dilemma and drama. In this one hundred and five minute film, a story of all the emotions possible are delivered from a cast that gives meaning to ensemble work.
I love films like “Sword Master” not only for its fantastic storytelling and the stellar cinematography that captures epic swordplay and fight sequences, but the beautiful costuming. It is important because costuming can become another character offering up so much elegance that it is absolutely breathtaking.
Director Yee is a former Hong Kong actor who became a screenwriter and film director bringing some of my favorite Asian films to the screen. From “Protégé” to “The Great Magician” and “I Am Somebody,” director Yee takes amazing stories and gives them a richness that shows in every frame he offers to the screen.
The Blu-ray includes the special features of “Mastering the Sword” and also makes the English language version available.
In the end — it is the story of a master swordsman come to life!