Ye yan (Legend of the Black Scorpion) (The Banquet)

Critics Consensus

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36%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 11

60%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 6,753
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Movie Info

A World Without Thieves director Feng Xiaogang shifts his focus from modern-day con artists to tenth century intrigue with this tale of internal turmoil in the age of Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms starring Zhang Ziyi, Daniel Wu, and Ge You. Her empire on the verge of a massive revolution as storms begin to brew both within the royal court as well as in the outlying kingdoms, the entrancing Empress Wan (Zhang) gazes upon her stepson, Prince Wu Luan (Wu), with the eyes of a forbidden lover rather than a caring mother. When the emperor dies an unexpected death and his younger brother Li (Ge) ascends to the throne, Empress Wan marries the newly appointed sovereign as a means of both protecting her beloved Wu Luan and cementing her position within the royal court. When assassins dispatched by Emperor Li fail in their attempt to silence Wu Luan and his majesty subsequently announces a lavish banquet, Empress Wan and Wu Luan realize that the time has finally come for them to take action against the murderous despot. The film demonstrates tremendous influence by Shakespearean plays, specifically +Hamlet and +Macbeth.

Cast

Daniel Wu
as Prince Wu Luan
Jingwu Ma
as Minister Yin Taichang
Huang Xiaoming
as General Yin
You Ge
as Emperor Li
Xun Zhou
as Qing Nu
Ziyi Zhang
as Empress Wan
Xiaoming Huang
as General Yin Sun
Zhonghe Zhou
as Chamberlain
Zeng Qiusheng
as Governor Pei Hong
Liu Yanbin
as Messenger
Ma Lun
as Pharmacist
Xiang Bin
as Imperial Guard
Zheng Chunyu
as Imperial Guard
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News & Interviews for Ye yan (Legend of the Black Scorpion) (The Banquet)

Critic Reviews for Ye yan (Legend of the Black Scorpion) (The Banquet)

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (3)

Audience Reviews for Ye yan (Legend of the Black Scorpion) (The Banquet)

  • Jun 11, 2009
    Xiaogang Feng creates a loose adaptation of William Shakespeare's <i>Hamlet</i> known as <i>The Banquet</i>.<p>The story involves deceit, betrayal, and all the other good stuff in the royal court. It does have a play-like feel to it with a run time of 2 hours and 10 minutes and a pace that is quite slow. Yes, the film does drag at times, however the cinematography, costuming, settings, and acting save this film from total boredom. Besides, the final 30 minutes, which is the banquet scene, is highly intriguing. Hence, <i>The Banquet</i>.</p><p>The action is minimal, and like mostly everything else in this film, very dramatic. Most of the shots are in slow motion and the orchestra type music tones down the bloody encounters. One of the sequences is more of a dance than a fight too. The martial arts choreography is there and it is a shame that a good portion of it isn't seen in real time speed.</p><p>The acting is good, albeit seemingly unemotional at times. Zhang Ziyi keeps the viewer at bay as she keeps switching sides with her actions. Daniel Wu, Zhou Xun, and Ge You round out the rest of the major cast.</p><p><i>The Banquet</i> is not the most entertaining of films, as it is mostly for people that enjoy theatrical arts. It is worth a check out if time allows.
    JY S Super Reviewer
  • Feb 08, 2009
    What a dramatic story! Very beautiful and choreographed movie. I loved the action sequences and stunning scenery. A love story with a tragic ending, it will captivate you. :) Awesome movie.
    Donna D Super Reviewer
  • Oct 30, 2008
    If you enjoyed movies like:"Curse of the Golden Flower", "Crouching Tiger : Hidden Dragon", you will be ready for this tale based upon the Japanese version of a Shakespearean type of tale. See this for the cinematography as well as the choreography, both were surreal!
    Fascade F Super Reviewer
  • Jul 05, 2008
    No kung-fu fighting this time from Ziyi Zhang. But theirs still plenty of action and some beautiful cinematography.
    Jonny C Super Reviewer

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