Hero (Chinese: 英雄; pinyin: Yīng Xióng) is a Chinese martial arts, drama and adventure film of the wuxia genre, directed by Zhang Yimou with music by Tan Dun. It was released in 2002. Starring Jet Li as the nameless protagonist, the movie is loosely based on the legendary Jing Ke, whose story is told in the chapter entitled Biography of the Assassins (刺客列傳) in Sima Qian's Records of the Grand Historian, or Shiji.
- I was orphaned at a young age and was never given a name. People simply called me Nameless. With no family name to live up to, I devoted myself to the sword. I spent ten years perfecting unique skills as a swordsman. The King of Qin has summoned me to court, for what I have accomplished has astonished the kingdom.
- Broken Sword said "The people have suffered years of warfare. Only the King of Qin can stop the chaos by uniting all under Heaven."
- Your Majesty, my task is completed now. My decision will cause the deaths of many and Your Majesty will live on. A dead man begs you to remember; a warrior's ultimate ideal is to lay down his sword.
King Of Qin
- I have just come to a realization! This scroll by Broken Sword contains no secrets of his swordsmanship. What this reveals is his highest ideal. In the first state, man and sword become one and each other. Here, even a blade of grass can be used as a lethal weapon. In the next stage, the sword resides not in the hand but in the heart. Even without a weapon, the warrior can slay his enemy from a hundred paces. But the ultimate ideal is when the sword disappears altogether. The warrior embraces all around him. The desire to kill no longer exists. Only peace remains.
- Is the sword the only answer?
- People give up their lives for many reasons. For friendship, for love, for an ideal. And people kill for the same reasons... Before China was one great country, it was divided into seven warring states. In the Kingdom of Qin was a ruthless ruler. He had a vision - To unite the land, to put an end, once and for all, to war. It was an idea soaked in the blood of his enemies. In any war there are heroes on both sides...
- The nameless warrior was executed as an assassin but buried as a hero. The King of Qin went on to conquer all of the six Kingdoms and unite the country. As China's first Emperor he completed the Great Wall to protect his subjects. This was more than two thousand years ago. But even now when the Chinese speak of their country They call it All Under Heaven.
- Nameless: Beautiful calligraphy.
- Broken Sword: Beautiful swordplay.