Monday, October 19, 2009
天龍八部 - Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils - Tian Long Ba Bu
天龍八部 (Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils/Tian Long Ba Bu) is a 2003 wuxia series out of China. The 3 main male stars are Hu Jun, Jimmy Lin, and Gao Hu. Female supporting cast include Liu Yi Fei, Liu Tao, Christy Chung, and Yang Rui. This wuxia series is based on the novel of the same name by Jin Yong.
The wuxia series follows lives of the three main male stars. The majority of the focus is on Hu Jun's character of Qiao Feng. Jimmy Lin plays the heir to the throne of Dali's Duan Yu. Gao Hu's shaolin monk character is named Xuzhu. Qiao Feng is the head of the Begger's Sect and has helped the Song defend against Khitan invaders. But a big mysterious plot unfolds before us regarding Qiao Feng's origin.
Along the way, Duan Yu gets girls to fall for him left and right. It isn't until Duan Yu meets Liu Yi Fei's Wang Yu Yan that his story gets interesting. Duan Yu is very smart but very lazy at learning kung fu. Duan Yu learns some of the most powerful kung fu by accident. Because its by accident, Duan Yu has trouble using the skills on a consistent basis. Which gets him into trouble.
Qiao Feng is the head of the Beggars Sect and is considered the most powerful master. But he's framed for many murders and than finds out he's not even Han, but Kitan.
Xuzhu stumbles upons his skills. But the skills he acquires are quite powerful.
These 3 somehow become sworn blood brothers.
The Jin Yong adaption is one of my favorites. All three main characters had things going for them. Qiao Feng with his righteous look on life. Duan Yu with his undying love for Wong Yu. Xuzhu with is innocent take on life.
In the mist of it all, I was instantly taken away from Liu Tao's performance as A Zhu. It's a shame that A Zhu had to die and that the story was very heavy in it's ethnic exploration.
I first learned about this series as Faye Wong sang the ending credits song. It wasn't long after that I watch the series withing days.
If you're a wuxia series fan, this is a must watch.