The prequel to 2010's Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame explains how Dee Renjie (Mark Chao) - the Tang Dynasty famous detective - rises to fame and becomes the prominent detective he is.
When a fleet of warships is attacked by a mysterious sea creature, Courtesan Yin (Angelababy) is offered as a sacrifice to placate it, and must stay at the Sea Dragon Temple.
Yin is in danger, and it's up to Dee to save her. But when he meets Yuan, with whom Yin is in love, and who has been turned into an ugly, scale-covered creature, Dee realises that these seemingly mythical events are part of an evil plot to bring down the Tang Dynasty.
The movie claims to be the first Chinese film to use 3D underwater technology. It also uses CG effects to rebuild glamorous scenes of Luoyang City. Sadly, beauty in films is not enough; while it all looks great, there are parts of the storyline that just don't make sense.
YP Rating: 3/5