Set in 1920s China, this deliriously entertaining film deftly blends vaudeville-style humor, vivid magic sequences and ruthless political gamesmanship. Village warlord Bully Lei (Ching Wan Lau) is accused of using mentalism to recruit soldiers to his cause. New arrival Zhang (superstar Tony Leung), upset to find out Lei is holding a former flame of his captive, aims to thwart these plans with an ambitious kidnap scheme and various tricks of his own. When the plan goes awry, the two match wits in an ongoing battle to see who is the more adept illusionist. Anchored by strong performances and a script full of sly references and interesting subtext, The Great Magician offers wonderfully action-packed period flavor.