The Butterfly Murders (1979) Tsui Hark

The Butterfly Murders (1979) aka Die Bian

Genre: Action | Horror | Mystery | Thriller
Director: Tsui Hark
Country: Hong Kong
Language: Cantonese
Subtitles: English (.srt File)
Aspect Ratio: Cinemascope 2.35:1
Length: 89mn
File: Dvdrip Xvid Avi - 720x320 - 23fps - 700mb

A journalist attempting to solve a mystery in "Martial World" enlists the aid of a master fighter and a woman named Green Breeze. They go to a mysterious castle where they come across poisonous butterflies and a black-leather-clad killer.

Tsui Hark's debut, The Butterfly Murders is one of those impossible to find films that seemed to exist only as a glowing reputation, so it's a surprise to find out that it's a highly enjoyable Hong Kong fantasy thriller that's surprisingly original. It's plot-led (there's very little action at all in the first half-hour) and comes with lashings of dark atmosphere, even managing to make its premise of killer butterflies work surprisingly well, and it makes good use of Goldsmith's Planet of the Apes score, pilfered alongside Morricone's Moses for the occasion (about the only genuinely original cue is a funky Meko-esquire disco title song!). Oh, and it has a very cool suit of black armour that any of the villains in Mad Max would kill for.

Beware: Mei Ah's remastered DVD shows up more than a few problems with the neg – there's a lot of water damage leading to noticeable yellow splotches in some scenes (mostly noticeable in the few daylight sequences) and the sound hums a bit – but it's still probably the best version available, with an otherwise decent 2.35 widescreen transfer.


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