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Assassin, The (12A)


An assassin accepts a dangerous mission to kill a political leader in seventh-century China.

The critical consensus

The underlying message of the film might be that sometimes it is crueller or more dangerous not to kill a miscreant. It might also be the case that the film is more taken by emotions, beauty and passing fancies than plot and character.

****(*)Kim Newman, Empire Online, 19/01/2016

Exquisitely made, deliberately slow-moving.

****(*)Geoffrey MacNab, The Independent, 22/01/2016

Anyone who cares about great film-making has to see The Assassin.

****(*)Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian, 21/01/2016

A measured, elegantly choreographed tale with Shu Qi convincingly capturing the steely determination and conflicted heart of the lethal, black-garbed assassin.

****(*)Allan Hunter, Daily Express, 22/01/2016

Targets cinematic pleasure and kills it stone dead.

**(*)(*)(*)Alistair Harkness, The Scotsman, 23/01/2016

Hou Hsiao-hsien’s painterly tale of Tang dynasty intrigue is a magnificent blend of fleet-footed action dark magic and emotional realism.

****(*)Mark Kermode, The Observer, 24/01/2016

Where and when?

General release. Check local listings for show times.

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