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The Bride with White Hair
|     review    |     notes     |     theme song     |     awards     |     availability     |     also see      |

Brigitte Lin prepares for the honeymoon in The Bride with White Hair.
AKA: Jiang Hu: Between Love and Glory  
Year: 1993  
Director: Ronny Yu Yan-Tai  
Producer: Raymond Wong Bak-Ming  
Producer: Raymond Wong Bak-Ming, Clifton Ko Chi-Sum
Writer: David Wu Dai-Wai, Lam Kei-To, Tseng Pik-Yin, Ronny Yu Yan-Tai
Action: Philip Kwok Chun-Fung  
Cast: Brigitte Lin Ching-Hsia, Leslie Cheung Kwok-Wing, Elaine Lui Siu-Ling, Yammie Nam Kit-Ying, Francis Ng Chun-Yu, Law Lok-Lam, Pau Fong, Eddy Ko Hung, Joseph Cheng
The Skinny: Strong performances by Leslie Cheung and Brigitte Lin are just part of the thrill of this 1993 Ronny Yu film. The Bride with White Hair is a fantastic introduction to not only the fantasy swordplay genre, but to the HK film experience as well.
Review by
     Told in flashback, The Bride with White Hair details the ill-fated love story of Wu Tang swordsman Cho Yi-Hang (Leslie Cheung) and Lien Ni-Chang (Brigitte Lin), the top assassin for the rival Supreme Cult. When we meet Cho at the beginning, we find that he has been waiting on a mountain for ten years in order to pluck the "majestic flower," a rose that blooms every twenty years and can cure any illness. But at that point in the narrative, we don't know his reasons. What unfolds next is a an exciting tale of divided loyalties as the heroic Cho finds himself falling for the "villainous" witch, who in turn comes to love him, a man she was ordered to kill by her hideous master, the misshapen Siamese twin, Chi Wu-Shuang (Francis Ng and Elaine Lui). The film concludes with a blood-drenched finale, in which Yi-Hang, Ni-Chang, and Wu-Shuang face off and the answer to the immortal question - "Whom do you trust?" - is answered…with heartbreaking results.
     Based on the 1954 wuxia novel by Leung Yu-Sang, The Bride with White Hair is directed by Ronny Yu with a refreshingly contemporary sensibility. Rather than simply depict bland do-gooders, the film has characters that openly question the heroic dogma of their age. Additionally, instead of having the two lovers simply exchange warm glances as we have seen in countless martial arts flicks, Ronny Yu shows us two A-list stars engaging in (at least in terms of the genre) graphic sex scenes. Dark, erotic, and visually stunning, The Bride with White Hair is a romance of Shakespearean proportions with a Hong Kong twist. I mean, since when did Romeo and Juliet ever have to deal with bloodthirsty, back-to-back Siamese twins? (Calvin McMillin 2002)
Notes: • Raymond Wong persuaded Leslie Cheung, who was at the time retired from singing, to write and perform the film's theme song. Cheung agreed, but only on the condition that the song would not be released on tape or CD. Of course, that move helped drive up The Bride with White Hair's box office, as Cheung's devoted fans flocked to the theatre to hear their idol's "exclusive" song.
• The subtitles on the Tai Seng DVD are removable, but strangely, they appear on the lower part of the print rather than below it in the black area. For those of you who own widescreen televisions, this might pose a problem.
Theme song: "The Bride's White Hair" by Leslie Cheung
Request this song on HKVP Radio | Vote for Leslie Cheung
Awards: 13th Annual Hong Kong Film Awards
• Winner - Best Art Direction (Eddie Ma)
• Winner - Best Cinematography (Peter Pau Tak-Hei)
• Winner - Best Costume Design (Emi Wada, Cheung Sun-Yiu)
• Nomination - Best Editing (David Wu Dai-Wai)
• Nomination - Best Original Score (Richard Yuen)
• Nomination - Best Song ("Hung Ngaan Baak Faat", performed by Leslie Cheung Kwok-Wing)
30th Annual Golden Horse Awards
• Best Song
• Best Adapted Screenplay (David Wu Dai-Wai, Lam Kei-To, Tseng Pik-Yin, Ronny Yu Yan-Tai)
1993 Fantastica Film Festival (Paris)
• Grand Prize
1994 Gerardmer Film Festival
• Grand Prize
Availability: DVD (USA)
Region 0 NTSC
Cantonese, Mandarin and English Language Tracks
Dolby Digital 5.1
Removable English Subtitles
"Making of" Special
Also see:

The Bride with White Hair 2 (1994)


image courtesy of Tai-Seng Video Marketing Copyright ©2002-2017 Ross Chen