The Best Wuxia Films from 2000 to Present

21 Jun

A sub-genre of fantasy, wuxia has gained a lot of fans not just in Asia but the rest of the world as well. Broadly defined, it is a Chinese film genre that highlights warriors of ancient or mythological China who are equipped with superhuman skills in the martial arts.

There are over a hundred wuxia films. We’ve narrowed down the list to the 10 best wuxia films from 2000 to the present.

1. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)

In perhaps the most successful wuxia film in the West, Chow Yun-Fat and Michelle Yeoh look for the stolen sword Green Destiny and come face-to-face with Jen (played Zhang Ziyi), a talented but rebellious martial artist.

2. Hero (2002)

Nameless (Jet Li) was summoned at the court of the King of Qin (Chen Daoming) who wanted the assassins Long Sky (Donnie Yen), Flying Snow (Maggie Cheung) and Broken Sword (Tony Leung) killed. Nameless recounts how he killed the assassins.

3. 14 Blades (2010)

Commander Qinglong (Donnie Yen) is betrayed and pursued by fellow members of Jinyiwei when he was given a box supposedly containing the proof of the imperial councilor Zhao’s treason.

4. The Forbidden Kingdom (2008)

An American named Jason Tripitikas (Michael Angarano) finds himself in a village in China. Lu Yan (Jackie Chan) told him of the conflict of the Monkey King (Jet Li) and the Jade Warlord (Collin Chou).

5. Dragon (2011)

Papermaker Liu Jinxi (Donnie Yen) becomes involved in an investigation by detective Xu Baijiu (Takeshi Kaneshiro) when he killed two bandits who attempted to rob the village’s general store. Xu suspects that Liu is more than he appears to be after having killed one of the most wanted criminals.

6. The Assassin (2015)

Nie Yinniang (Shu Qi) was given a mission by her master to kill governor Tian Ji’an (Chang Chen) as a test to redeem herself after she failed in her last mission.

7. Reign of Assassins (2010)

Cloth merchant Zeng Jing (Michelle Yeoh) was a former member of the Dark Stone assassins. Formerly called Drizzle, she tries to start a new life when she marries the messenger Jiang Ah-sheng (Jung Woo-sung), but it was a marriage full of secrets.

8. Curse of the Golden Flower (2006)

Emperor Ping (Chow Yun-fat) does not know that his wife the Empress Phoenix (Gong Li) is planning an uprising to punish him for slowly poisoning her with tea. The emperor’s former wife disguises to get close to the royal family but was later discovered.

9. Flying Swords of Dragon Gate (2011)

Zhao Huai’an (Jet Li) defeats the leader of the East Bureau, one of the three groups sent to execute people who refused to pay the bribes.

10. The Promise (2005)

Qingcheng (Cecilia Cheung) becomes the most beautiful woman in the land when she meet the goddess Manshen (Chen Hong). Her beauty came with a curse however. She will never find true love as long as she lives. She mistakenly falls in love with Guangming (Hiroyuki Sanada) whom she thought was Kunlun (Jang Dong-gun), her rescuer.

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