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The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom (2014) (Blu-ray) (3D Special Edition) (Hong Kong Version) Blu-ray Region A

Fan Bing Bing (Actor) | Huang Xiao Ming (Actor) | Vincent Zhao (Actor) | Cecilia Yip (Actor)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

A classic tale of love, betrayal and the pain of a woman scorned, Liang Yusheng's The Bride with White Hair has been told in multiple films and television series, including Ronny Yu's 1993 hit film of the same name. Now, director Jacob Cheung (A Battle of Wits) brings the story to a new generation of wuxia fans with White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom. Superstars Fan Bingbing (Shaolin, Buddha Mountain) and Huang Xiaoming (American Dreams in China) co-star as a pair of star-crossed lovers caught in an era of turmoil and war during the Ming Dynasty. To bring this story to life in 3D, Cheung even recruited the help of director Tsui Hark, one of the pioneers of 3D technology in Chinese cinema, as the film's artistic consultant.

Near the end of the Ming Dynasty, Wudang's Zhuo Yihang (Huang Xiaoming), as the future leader of the sect, is assigned to present the Red Clous to the Emperor as royal tribute. However, the Emperor dies soon after consuming the Bolus, and Yihang is set up as the murderer. Escaping to the northwestern border, Yihang encounters Lian Nicheng (Fan Bingbing), the leader of a group of bandits out to wipe out corrupt government officials. During a battle, Nicheng rescues Yihang and takes him to her home in Moonlight Village, dubbed as a terrorist base by the government. Over time, Yihang comes to understand Nicheng's noble quest, and the two fall in love. However, the turmoil in the capital finally arrives in Moonlight Village, and Yihang is told that Nicheng is responsible for the murder of his grandfather.

This edition features the 3D version of the film, and a 3D Blu-ray player and 3D television are required to play the disc. A 3D Blu-ray player, 3D television and 3D glasses are required to watch the 3D version of the film. It includes making of and trailers.

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Technical Information

Product Title: The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom (2014) (Blu-ray) (3D Special Edition) (Hong Kong Version) 白髮魔女傳之明月天國 (2014) (Blu-ray) (3D特別版) (香港版) 白发魔女传之明月天国 (2014) (Blu-ray) (3D特别版) (香港版) 白髮魔女傳之明月天國 (2014) (Blu-ray) (3D特別版) (香港版) The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom (2014) (Blu-ray) (3D Special Edition) (Hong Kong Version)
Artist Name(s): Fan Bing Bing (Actor) | Huang Xiao Ming (Actor) | Vincent Zhao (Actor) | Cecilia Yip (Actor) | Wang Xue Bing (Actor) | Li Xin Ru (Actor) | Xu Xiang Dong (Actor) | Tong Yao (Actor) | Yu Cheng Hui (Actor) | Ni Da Hong (Actor) | Tsui Hark 范冰冰 (Actor) | 黃曉明 (Actor) | 趙文卓 (Actor) | 葉童 (Actor) | 王 學兵 (Actor) | 李欣汝 (Actor) | 徐向東 (Actor) | 童 瑤 (Actor) | 于承惠 (Actor) | 倪 大紅 (Actor) | 徐 克 范冰冰 (Actor) | 黄 晓明 (Actor) | 赵文卓 (Actor) | 叶童 (Actor) | 王 学兵 (Actor) | 李欣汝 (Actor) | 徐向东 (Actor) | 童 瑶 (Actor) | 于承惠 (Actor) | 倪 大红 (Actor) | 徐 克 范冰冰 (ファン・ビンビン) (Actor) | 黄暁明 (ホァン・シァオミン) (Actor) | 趙文卓 (チウ・マンチェク) (Actor) | 葉童(イップ・トン) (Actor) | 王学兵(ワン・シュエビン) (Actor) | Li Xin Ru (Actor) | Xu Xiang Dong (Actor) | Tong Yao (Actor) | 于承惠(ユー・チェンホェイ)、 (Actor) | 倪大紅(ニー・ダーホン) (Actor) | 徐克(ツイ・ハーク) Fan Bing Bing (Actor) | Huang Xiao Ming (Actor) | Vincent Zhao (Actor) | Cecilia Yip (Actor) | Wang Xue Bing (Actor) | Li Xin Ru (Actor) | Xu Xiang Dong (Actor) | Tong Yao (Actor) | Yu Cheng Hui (Actor) | Ni Da Hong (Actor) | 서극
Director: Jacob Cheung 張之亮 张之亮 張之亮(ジェイコブ・チャン) Jacob Cheung
Blu-ray Region Code: A - Americas (North, Central and South except French Guiana), Korea, Japan, South East Asia (including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) What is it?
Release Date: 2014-10-24
Language: Cantonese, Mandarin
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese
Country of Origin: China
Picture Format: [HD] High Definition What is it?
Sound Information: Dolby Digital EX(TM) / THX Surround EX(TM), Dolby TrueHD
Disc Format(s): Blu-ray
Screen Resolution: 1080p (1920 x 1080 progressive scan)
Rating: IIA
Duration: 104 (mins)
Publisher: Panorama (HK)
Package Weight: 120 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1037048477

Product Information

* Special Features (22mins):
- Making Of
- Trailer

In the twilight of the Ming Dynasty, the Imperial court is plagued by corruption as tyrants rule over the land. Widespread famine is rapidly claiming lives near the northwest border, to save them, sorceress jade Raksha fights the soldiers that oppress people for their own gain. As payback, local government officials decide to pin the murder of Governor Zhuo Zhonglian on Jade, turning her and the members of her cult into wanted fugitives for a crime they didn’t commit.

Meanwhile, Wudang sect’s Master Ziyang intends to nominate disciple Zhuo Yihang to become the next sect leader, sending him to the capital to present th eRed Bolus to th e Emperor. However, the Emperor dies ofter consuming it, the Imperial Guards are quickly dispatched to capture Yihang.

Yihang flees; while helping the famine victims, he witnesses Jade Raksha’s prowess and ferocity in battle. Jade brings Yihang to Moonlight Village, which dubbed to be “The Demon’s Cave” by government officials, is actually a paradise on Earth. There, Yihang is immediately attracted to Jade’s transcendent beauty and her strong sense of honour. The two soon fall in love. However, the Imperial Guards invade Moonlight Village and capture Yihang, who is told that Jade is responsible for the death of his grandfather. Heartbroken and betrayed, Yihang is arrested and put into jail. He chooses to leave Wudang and marry a tyrant’s daughter. Upon hearing the news, Jade breaks into the wedding and stabs Yihang in the heart. Jade’s pain causes her hair to transform form black to blinding white in just one night….
Additional Information may be provided by the manufacturer, supplier, or a third party, and may be in its original language

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Awards

This film has received 1 award nomination(s). All Award-Winning Asian Films

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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom (2014) (Blu-ray) (3D Special Edition) (Hong Kong Version)"

December 22, 2014

This professional review refers to The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom (2014) (Blu-ray) (Hong Kong Version)
Proving again that it's not only Hollywood that's obsessed with revisiting past hits is The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom, a new take on Liang Yusheng's classic text that for many was perfected for the screen in 1993 by Ronny Yu with his seminal The Bride with White Hair. Bravely taking on the task of providing a new definitive version is director Jacob Cheung (A Battle of Wits), backed by a huge budget and state of the art 3D special effects, plus headline talent Fan Bingbing and Huang Xiaoming - a lead pairing which, despite the film receiving mixed reviews, helped it emerge as one of the biggest domestic hits of the year.

Set near the end of the Ming Dynasty, the plot sees Huang Xiaoming as Zhuo Yihang, future leader of the Wudang Sect, who travels to court to pay tribute to the emperor. However, the land is thrown into turmoil when the emperor dies, and Yihang is forced to flee after being blamed for the crime, set up by the evil royal eunuch Wei Zhongtian (Ni Dahong). Trying to get as far away as possible, he heads for Fort Luna near the north western border of the country, where he encounters the beautiful Jade Rakshasha, Lian Nishang (Fan Bingbing), who leads a gang dedicated to bringing down corrupt officials and defending the local peasants. Although initially unsure of each other, Yihang and Nishang fall in love, though their blossoming relationship is threatened when their various opposing factions converge on them, the government having labelled Nishang an enemy of the state who is to be hunted down and killed by Wei general Jin Duyi (Vincent Zhao, True Legend); complications ensue.

Though Liang Yushengs source material has been directly or indirectly adapted for the large and small screen countless times, it was always Yu's Brigitte Lin and Leslie Cheung version which was going to be the main point of comparison - and unsurprisingly, The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom doesn't really come close to capturing the same kind of magic. Given the classic status of The Bride with White Hair, this in itself isn't necessarily a crushing criticism, and there's something to be said for what Jacob Cheung has managed to pull off here, the film having enough points in its favour to make it just about worthwhile.

Despite being designed with mass appeal in mind, one thing White Haired Witch certainly can;t be accused of is dumbing down or paring back its source material, Cheung packing in a huge amount of plot in the form of politics, intrigues and warring factions. There's a great deal going on around the central romance, not to mention a huge cast of supporting characters, and though the attempt to combine fact and fantasy doesn't always convince, the film does engage, at least for those viewers prepared to pay attention. Strangely, while there's enough here to have warranted a far longer film, Cheung keeps things moving along at fast pace, cramming it all into just 104 minutes, giving the proceedings an at times breathless feel. Although on the plus side this can perhaps be seen as a victory for efficiency over the usual blockbuster bloating, it does get confusing in places, the story-telling and sketchy narrative not being strong enough to bear the considerable weight.

Crucially, the film's central relationship works reasonably well, at least in terms of lowered expectations, Cheung seeming to be playing it for tragic drama rather than actual romance, probably for the best. Needless to say, Fan Bingbing and Huang Xiaoming are not Brigitte Lin and Leslie Cheung, though they're certainly a good looking pair, and their courtship, made up mainly of smouldering glances and longing stares is moderately effective, if occasionally inadvertently amusing - this in no small part is due to Huang Xiaoming's oddly smug performance, which sees him spending much of the running time smirking or trying too hard to look mock-handsome and what was presumably meant to be noble. To her credit, Fan Bingbing turns in one of her better shows of late, never disgracing the iconic role, and though there's very little emotional involvement or passion to the Zhuo Yihang and Lian Nishang love affair, it does hold the interest.

Given the advances in technology, one area where White Haired Witch would be expected to excel is in that of action and special effects, and here Cheung does a pretty impressive job, the film making good use of its large 100 million yuan budget and locations and enjoying a suitably epic fantasy feel. Some thanks for this go to Tsui Hark, who served as the film's artistic consultant, primarily working on the 3D effects, and though these count for little on the small screen, the film does feature better CGI work than many of its peers. Featuring solid choreography from Stephen Tung, the martial arts and battle set pieces are similarly of a good standard, showing imagination and making for a few standout moments, and this helps distract from the film's narrative and romantic flaws.

The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom was always going to be in somewhat of a difficulty position, being unlikely to convince fans of The Bride with White Hair and jostling for position in an already overcrowded playing field of similar Chinese blockbuster historical and wuxia epics. As such, and viewed on its own merits, it's an above average film that offers a respectable amount of entertainment and star value, and which perhaps shouldn't be judged too harshly - at least until the end credits, when Leslie Cheung's Bride theme song "Red Face, White Hair" plays, precisely when Jacob Cheung should have been hoping audiences wouldn't be casting their minds back to Ronny Yu's far superior Liang Yusheng adaptation.

by James Mudge - EasternKicks.com

This original content has been created by or licensed to YesAsia.com, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of YesAsia.com.
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