Chinese Paladin III
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(Apr 27, 2010)
To Lord of Devils Chonglou, accidently unsealed the Ghost Tower on Mount Shusan and released all the ghosts and devils causing dire threats to peace in the human world. It is now up to the undefeated Heavenly General Jingtian to take on the enormous task,
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The black magic and the fantasy stunts may seem a little outdone to a person who has not read up on Daoist history. But a person who is aware of Daoist tradition can more fully appreciate the stories about a love that endures three lifetimes, a reunion between brother and sister after one thousand years, the purging of evil spirits with potions and internal energies, the sacrifices of flesh and blood, and the preoccupation with transcendance onto nirvana.
Profound themes such as love, duty and freewill are presented amid pun and banter throughout the Series. One theme touched me in particular: The value/purpose of human suffering versus the value/purpose of the gods. While mortals are obssessed with nirvana and find the cycle of birth/life/death unbearable, the gods are sickened with boredom in heaven.
The Series has an unordothox ending. Does the all-handsome, all-intelligent, all-rational (seemingly), all-powerful martial-arts hero fullfil his duty to save the world, and then live happily ever after with the love of his three-lives? Does the quick-witted but unlearned rascal mend his naughty ways, learn the martial arts, and fullfil the destiny chosen for him by the gods?
The Series falls short in tying up loose ends. We never learn what happens to the baby who is supposed to have helped saved the world with her life, but whose life the elder monks try to save by transferring their immortal energies to her. We never learn what happens to the Tree Goddess, consigned to a lonely existance guarding a tree that gives fruit once every five hundred years, whose human counterpart is having all manner of advantures on earth with their one beloved God-Turned-Man. Some stories do not flow smoothly. A character at the beginning of the Series quickly falls off the storyline and does not resurface until the very end of the Series; yet, this character plays an important role at the end in helping save the world. The Yellow Potato Fairy, having been the savior of the world in beginning episodes, fades to the background and disappears altogether.
Also, the English translation is over-simplified and does not do justice to the complexity of the Daoist expressions so prevalent throughout the Series.
I would rate this Series PG-13 for the audience. I watched it with my sons who are 10 and 7. My 10-year-old year was able to handle it, but I had to excuse my 7-year-old from watching certain kissing scenes that lingered a bit too long.
Overall, I Love This Series!!!