The Shadow (1994)

Director : Russell Mulcahy

The movie opens in the opium fields in Tibet in the 1930's and we can see right from the start that the movie is beautifully filmed. A man is dragged in to a hall filled with a decadent looking, drug smoking court. The man is accused of killing three of "our" men by Wu, the chief advisor to Jinko. Jinko (Alec Baldwin), who holds court, controls the opium trade in Asia and he orders the man to be killed.
When the man gets a knife and holds it to the Wu's throat, Cranston tells his guards to shoot through the man who has been like a father to him. He then tells a joke in Chines and his audience laughs over the bodies of the dead men.

One night Jinko is taken from his bed and brought to see the holy man Tulku.
Lamont Cranston: Do you have *any* *idea* who you just kidnapped?
Tulku: Cranston; Lamont Cranston.
Lamont Cranston: You know my real name?
Tulku: Yes. I also know that for as long as you can remember, you struggled against your own black heart and always lost. You watched your sprit, your very face change as the beast claws its way out from within you. You are in great pain, aren't you? [Cranston leaps at the Tulku, who magically vanishes and reappears]
Tulku: You know what evil lurks in the hearts of men, for you have seen that evil in your own heart. Every man pays a price for redemption; this is yours.
Lamont Cranston: I'm not lookin' for redemption!
Tulku: You have no choice: you *will* be redeemed, because I will teach you to use your black shadow to fight evil.

Tilku then demonstrates great powers as he can movie objects with his mind.
Then acoss the screen we read :

The price of redemption for Cranston was to take up man’s struggle against evil. The Tulku taught him to cloud men’s minds, to fog their vision through force of concentration, leaving visible the only thing he can never hide — his Shadow.

Thus armed, Cranston returned to his homeland, that most wretched lair of villainy we know as ....
New York City
Seven Years Later

We then shift to some gangsters on a bridge in NYC. They have a man who saw them commit a crime with his feet in a block of cement. They are about to dump him in to the water when they hear some laughing. The gangster, Duke, responds with machine gun fire, but a shadowy figure tells him he is going to admit to his crimes and Duke after being thrown around a bit, decides that he will.
We then see The Shadow. Jinko has transformed in to Lamont Cranston, The Shadow. He wears a long coat, broad hat and a red scarf around his mouth. He pulls out two guns and shoots away the block of cement from the victim's feet. he tells the man that he saved his life and he will now be one of his agents.
We next see some scientists in a museum with a shipment they just received of a silver Tibetian mummy case. There is an inscription that says it is the coffin of Genghis Khan. After the scientists leave, Shiwan Khan comes out of the coffin. He has power of the mind and makes the security guard shoot himself in the head.
Margo, is the daughter of millionaire scientist Dr. Reinhardt Lane (Ian McKellen). Farley Claymore (Tim Curry) is Lane's partner and he likes Margo. Cranston gets a report from one of his agenst of a murder at the museum. He then turns around and meets Shiwan Khan, the last descendant of Genghis. He knows Cranston as Jinko and says he is an admirer. Khan also has the ability to cloud men's minds. He plans to conquer the part of the world his ancestor missed.
Khan is forcing Dr. Lane and Claymore to work for him. He wants them to develop an atomic bomb using some metal he has. Some of his minions are at the lab and The Shadow fights them off using his two pistols. Khan then controls Margo's mind and sends her to shoot Cranston. He stops her but now she knows he is The Shadow.
Khan then threatens to blow up the city unless he gers a huge ransom. The Shadow chases Khan and when they meet it is a battle of the minds and The Shadow sends a shard of glass in to Khan's head. We next see Khan locked in a strait jacket, and his powers seem to be gone. Part of his brain was removed when the doctors fixed him up.
In many ways it reminds me of The Phantom. It had much more style than substance but it worked in its own deliberately campy way. Enjoy the art deco style but don't expect too much in the way of a story.