Director and screenwriter King Hu tells a story from the Ming period, when a group of royal eunuchs decides to eliminate the respected and just official You Chin. Chin is executed based on a fabricated accusation and his family is sent to exile in northern China only to face more danger. There at the mysterious Dragon Gate Inn, travelers and other exiles meet. The struggle for life and freedom is on. This epic and at the same time very personal work was a turning point in the evolution of kung-fu films. The camera departs from its once fixed place, fight scenes take on an almost ballet form and the entire movie is a metaphor of the struggle against the authoritarian communist regime in China.
King Hu (1931-1997)
One of the pioneers of kung-fu film, strongly influenced by classical Chinese opera. King Hu started his career in cinema as an author of wartime anti-Japanese films. Later, he started making so-called wuxia (period kung-fu) films until in the Dragon Inn, he created an entirely new dance-fight movie, which forever changed the genre. He is still admired for his ability to bring together classical Chinese literature, opera, mythology and religion in a dynamic cinematic form.