Legendary martial artist Li Mu Bai is tracking the murderer of his master. The poised and self-assured Li can handle anything -- except his feelings for lithe, pantherish Yu Shu Lien. Jen Yu, the tremulous and spoiled daughter of the Province's governor, is also fascinated by Shu Lien's glamorous life: that a woman can have so many adventures and such freedom is marvelous to her. Though the refined Jen is soon to be married off into respectability, she harbors a sinister plan. By night she transforms into a masked and cunning thief, out to steal the Green Destiny, an invincible blade once wielded by Li. At the same time, Li embarks on his own quest to recover the missing sword, possibly the key to his master's murder.