The Duel (2000)
After a long absence, a master swordsman of royal blood, Yeh Cool-son, returns to the emperor’s palace to challenge Snow, a reclusive master, to a dual on new year’s eve. In the days before the dual, strange things happen in the palace, seen mostly through the eyes of Dragon 9, a leader of the guard who alternates between serious pursuit of duty and joking. His girlfriend, Jade, is a prostitute; Princess Phoenix, the emperor’s sister, has been his friend since childhood. There are murders in the palace, and evidence points to Snow, whom Dragon 9 believes is above suspicion. As the princess is attracted to Yeh and as the duel approaches, will Dragon 9 figure out what is going on?