The Assassin ★★★

Never has a film looked, sounded or been directed so impeccably breathtaking only to have the plot rot away all such beauty. Hou's compositions are unmatched (with some parts in the first half directed almost like horror) and he presents the viewer with some fleeting moments of joy (action sequences transition delightfully), but eventually ends up creating a plot so densely convoluted that it becomes not only hard to understand the relationships between the endlessly introduced characters, but overall hard to enjoy in any sense greater than surface level. Deserving of a rewatch for sure.

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