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Hou Hsiao-Hsien's film screened at Cannes to compete for Palme d'Or

Xinhua, May 22, 2015 Adjust font size:

The latest film Nie Yinniang (The Assassin) by Hou Hsiao-Hsien, the famous director from China's Taiwan, was screened Thursday in Cannes to compete for Palme d'Or at the ongoing 68th Festival de Cannes.

In 9th century China. Ten-year-old general's daughter Nie Yinniang is abducted by a nun who initiates her into the martial arts, transforming her into an exceptional assassin charged with eliminating cruel and corrupt local governors.

One day, having failed in a task, she is sent back by her mistress to the land of her birth, with orders to kill the man to whom she was promised -- a cousin who now leads the largest military region in North China. After 13 years of exile, the young woman must confront her parents, her memories and her long-repressed feelings.

A slave to the orders of her mistress, Nie Yinniang must choose: sacrifice the man she loves or break forever with the sacred way of the righteous assassins.

Asked about why he wanted to make this film, Hou said: "the story took place in Tang Dynasty which was a very glamorous dynasty in Chinese history. Women had an even higher place than men at that time. So I thought it would be very interesting."

"It was very difficult during the shooting. The director wanted Nie Yinniang to be someone that keeps her counsel, including her emotions, but I still needed to show some. It was very difficult to control how much to show," said Shu Qi who plays the leading role Nie Yinniang in this movie.

This is the seventh time that Hou Hsiao-Hsien's movie is competing for Palme d'Or. He won the Jury Prize in 1993 and Technical Grand Prize in 2001, respectively for his movies The Puppetmaster and Millenium Mambo.

A total of 19 films were selected to compete for the top prize Palme d'Or. The 68th Festival de Cannes (Cannes Film Festival) runs from May 13 to 24. Enditem