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SFS Talkies / World Cinema Series: A Touch of Zen by King Hu

When 13 November 2007 (Tuesday), 7.30 pm
Where National Museum of Singapore, Gallery Theatre
93 Stamford Road Singapore 178897

Free admission for Singapore Film Society members. Tickets for the public: $8 / $6.40 concession.
Counter Sales: Stamford Visitor Services Counter: 10am – 8pm; Canning Visitor Services Counter: 10am – 5pm. Online Booking: (click on Online Booking tab at the bottom of the webpage). Ticketing Information: 6332 3659. General Enquiries: 6332 5642. Patrons are advised that valid identity pass is required for all screenings.


World Cinema Series
A programme of the National Museum Cinémathèque

Co-presented by National Museum of Singapore and the Singapore Film Society

World Cinema Series
is a monthly screening of works by the boldest and most inventive auteurs from the history of cinema.

This series charts both the significant and less discovered territories of cinema - from the early silent era to underground films, and new wave film movements around the world, by some of the greatest mavericks and artists of film.

Discover the wonders and possibilities of the art of cinema on the big screen – as it was meant to be seen – with the World Cinema Series, shown every second Tuesday of the month at the National Museum of Singapore.

Tuesday 13 November,  7.30pm

Gallery Theatre, National Museum of Singapore

Dir: King Hu

1971 / Taiwan / 187 min / 35 mm / PG

(in Mandarin with English subtitles)

A milestone in martial arts cinema, A Touch of Zen is King Hu’s most acclaimed and ambitious film.

Inspired by the aesthetics of Japanese samurai films, this poetic three-hour epic brought Chinese cinema to new technical and artistic heights, revolutionising the martial arts genre and influencing the works of directors like Tsui Hark ( Swordsman II) , Ang Lee (Couching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) and John Carpenter (Big Trouble in Little China).  

The film tells the story of a poor scholar, Ku Shen Chai whose path crosses with two fugitives, General Shih and an enigmatic lady, Yang Hui Ching. The two are hiding out in an abandoned estate from the corrupt court official, Eunuch Wei. Shen Chai’s interest in military strategy and Hui Ching’s quest to revenge the massacre of her family brings them together  in a face–off with Eunuch Wei. They are finally joined by other pugilists and a group of mysterious and powerful Shaolin monks, headed by Abbot Hui (played by veteran actor Roy Chiao), as the film builds up to its seminal and breathtaking final battle scene.

A Touch of Zen
has been named as one of Time Magazine’s All-Time 100 Best Films. It also won a special technical award at the Cannes Film Festival and is one of the first Chinese films to gain recognition in the international film festival arena.

A discussion of the film will be led by Stephen Teo. Stephen is a research fellow in the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore. He is also the author of Hong Kong Cinema: The Extra Dimensions (1997), Wong Kar-wai (2005), King Hu's A Touch of Zen (2007), and Director in Action: Johnnie To and the Hong Kong Action Film (2007).