The first part of the experience.

Here's a spoiler -free version of the delightfully melodramatic plot summary from imdb (courtesy of Sony Pictures):
China, Later Tang Dynasty, 10th Century. On the eve of the Chong Yang (Chrysanthemum) Festival, golden flowers fill the Imperial Palace. The Emperor (Chow Yun Fat) returns unexpectedly with his second son, Prince Jai (Jay Chou). His pretext is to celebrate the holiday with his family, but given the chilled relations between the Emperor and the ailing Empress (Gong Li), this seems disingenuous.
Amid the glamour and grandeur of the festival, ugly secrets are revealed. As the Imperial Family continues its elaborate charade in a palatial setting, thousands of golden armored warriors charge the palace. Against a moonlit night, thousands of chrysanthemum blossoms are trampled as blood spills across the Imperial Palace.

The theatrical trailer:

A shorter, more action oriented trailer:

Think 'Rome' with ninjas, kung fu and haunting drum beat, and you've got 'Curse of the Golden Flower'. The film has all of the poison and personally forces her to top it up to make sure she's not falling behind in the dosage.

Where it gets really hard though, is being in line for the throne.

The crown prince has become the empress' boy toy while his father was away. Then there's the daughter of the imperial doctor poison the empress, but things don't go quite as smoothly as he'd hoped. Just goes to show being the Emperor is not all bad. The 21st century is (very) slowly making a few inroads. They now have an internet cafe where I can catch up with Dumbledore or even Snape.

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