Zhang Yimou's most recent is Shadow, a wuxia film dependent on the Chinese "Three Kingdoms" legend. Where Yimou's ongoing filmography either supports substance over amaze (Coming Home) or stun over substance (The Great Wall), Shadow does what the best of his motion pictures do by sewing them together into one consistent bundle.
As in Hero, as in House of Flying Daggers, the repulsive force battle scenes are staggering to view, yet those motion pictures put execution and activity on a similar plane, and Shadow intentionally isolates them with a beautiful monochrome palette, backgrounded by dim scale that lets the entertainers, and the bounteous measure of blood they spill all through, hold its cutting edge. Here, in this story of royal residence interest, Commander Yu (Deng Chao) utilizes a twofold to act in his stead (likewise Deng Chao)— his shadow, maybe—to hold onto control of a city of key an incentive from attacking powers against requests from his lord (Zheng Kai). The film wanders aimlessly, however through Zhang's given stylization, the complexities never overpower. Rather, the stylization does.