Babak Geranfar’s review:
Eloge de l’amour
Wuxia is a very respected genre in mainstream Asian cinema, It even went as big as Hollywood with “Hidden Dragon, Crouching Tiger”, “Hero” and “House of Flying Daggers”. But when an artist such as Hou Hsiao-Hsien touch it with his minimalistic approach you have to be ready to be shocked.
“The Assassin” is glamorous without any mega-picture setting, thrilling without any swordplay on ropes, operatic without any chorus and romantic without any catchy music. It is a piece of art presented as one-woman-opera elegantly played by Shu Qi, and as an eloge-de-l`amour touchingly narrated by Hou`s sublime visual style.