The Emperor and the Assassin sets a new standard for quality of production. The story, costumes, sets, music, and performances all have such a powerful authenticity that after watching it, I felt like I had just lived through a two-thousand year old episode of Chinese history. Director Chen Kaige's (Yellow Earth, Temptress Moon) film lives up to its billing and is a worthwhile success (not to mention the most expensive Asian film ever produced).

Set in third century B.C., The Emperor and the Assassin is the story of Ying Zheng (Li Xuejian), leader of the Kingdom of Qin, whose goal is to conquer the six other kingdoms of China and merge them into one unified land. To accomplish this objective, he embarks upon a horrific reign of terror and brutality against all who stand between him and his destiny.

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