I don't know if 2012 has been a great year for Hong Kong film, but it's certainly been one of the most fun. Between Tsui Hark's hugely enjoyable sword on a wire-meets-heist movie "Flying Swords of Dragon Gate," and Ho-Cheung Pang nasty and not at all explicit filmmaking comedy "Vulgaria," I've been more excited about Hong Kong movies for the first time since... I guess before the sweeping historical epic boom kicked off six or seven years ago.
Now we have director Kuo-fu Chen's "Painted Skin: The Resurrection," a sequel to the 2008 martial arts fantasy by Gordon Chan. The first film starred Xun Zhou ("The Empress and the Assassin," "Flying Swords at Dragon Gate") as the fox demon Xiaowei who preys on unsuspecting and lusty men by ripping out their hearts. Her character returns here, freed from 500 years imprisoned in a block of ice and in search of a heart given to her willingly so that she might become human, ultimately become a third part of a love triangle involving a stoic general on the frontier and a scarred princess.