In 19th century China, the scholar Li Mu Bai gives his sword “Destiny” to the warrior Yu Shu Lien, whom he secretly loves. One evening the sword is stolen. And so begins an endless chase through palaces, deserts, caves and bamboo forests.
At the crossing of destinies between masters and disciples, men and women, all chasing or fleeing one another, the figures of real desires secretly unfold. A masterpiece of the genre, with spectacular fights and a rarely found gracefulness, the film of Ang Lee is still above all a story about love, in which the beauty of the scenes skilfully strip the fighting of its violence, replacing it with a ballet of sensuous movement. Crossing swords also means revealing one’s heart.