Cast & Crew
In 230 B. C., warrior Shih Huang Ti unifies China by conquering all the warring tribes. He builds a luxurious palace, fills it with beautiful women, and marries Princess Chu, who at first tries to kill him for ordering her father's death. Although the tyrant proposes sweeping modernization for the country, his opponents employ expert swordsman Ching Ko to assassinate him. Their plot fails, and Shih Huang Ti rousts the opposition in a chariot fight. After his wife is murdered by invading hordes from the north, the emperor orders the erection of the Great Wall to protect his country. Obsessed with this grandiose project, he brutally oppresses the enslaved laborers, among whom is Hsi Liang, a young scholar who is tortured on the day he is to wed Chiang-nu. Later, an earthquake halts construction, and in order to appease the gods, the emperor sacrifices Hsi Liang by burying him alive in the wall. Chiang-nu, denounced as a witch, is saved from execution by Li Hei, son of the emperor's favorite guard. The troubled ruler, having defied the will of the people, is killed by an assassin, and civil war again erupts throughout the country.
Filmed on location in Taiwan. Released in Japan in 1962 as Shin no shikotei in 70mm Super Technirama; running time: 160 min.