The critically acclaimed film, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, directed by Ang Lee, is more than your average martial arts film. This is a classic tale of love, honor, loyalty, and personal freedom incorporated with some beautiful gravity defying fight scenes. Although there still are some stereotypes of Asian films depicted, overall this film strays away from these and focuses on a strong heroine theme.
On the surface the Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is just another "kung fu" action film. With your stereotypical elaborate fight scenes in which honor and respect are always at the forefront, and there are never any cheap shots taken on the opponent. But there is also a very non-typical role in the film, the role of the woman. Normally in any martial arts films, women are always portrayed as objects, which the men must protect using there hand to hand combat skills. But this is not the case in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, in fact there are three very strong and independent women the film focuses on. The three major females are, Yu Shu lien played by Michelle Yeoh, Jen Yu played by Ziyi Zhang and Jade Fox played by Pei-pei Cheng. Though these women have much in common they are still very much individuals. Jen Yu, the main character of the film, is the daughter of a minister of great and powerful dynasty. She has grown up with every benefit imaginable, including a nanny, Jade Fox. Jen Yu has learned many things from Jade Fox, but most importantly she has learned martial arts from her. This is very uncommon for someone of Jen Yu's status to be doing; this is why she has been learning all of this in secret, because she does not want to disgrace her family. The third major woman in the film is Yu Shu Lien, is a professional samurai who Jen Yu admires. .
All three of these women have overcome the odds and are at the top of their game. They are portrayed in the film as equal or maybe even better then men at martial arts, and do not appear to be dependent on men.