Originally re-edited and released in two parts, King Hu’s lengthy 1969 spiritual kung-fu masterpiece here appears as the director intended. The first half is slow, as an underachieving artist meets a beautiful damsel in a haunted fort. Then the fighting begins. Less concerned with special effects than the communication of “zen” through the feeling of the film, it’s a truly beautiful piece.
DVD EXTRAS: Filmographies, director’s notes.