Ichi seeks out on a pilgrimage to 81 temples, exploring spirituality to atone for his bloody past. On the way, Ichi stumbles into a village that's being bullied by a violent Yakuza boss and... See full summary »
Star Shintaro Katsu sits in the director's chair for this psychedelic and unremittingly bleak entry in the Zatoichi series, which is unlike any other in its grind-house grimness. A tale of ... See full summary »
Zatoichi tries to unrest the mob rule over a small village all while the gang leader's bodyguard is actually the Yojimbo, secretly taking the gang down from the inside. Will the two heroes realize in time that they are on the same side?
Blind masseur and master swordsman Zatoichi becomes involved with a gang of bandits hiding out in a small village. While they hide in the attic of a silk mill, they manipulate the corrupt chief official of the town. Simultaneously Zatoichi tries to rescue a young woman from the sweatshop conditions of the mill. Eventually he must confront not only the leaders of the town but the outlaw gang in battle. Written by
Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
One of the best in the series...don't expect much comedy though.
Zatoichi and the fugitives is definitely one the few that stands out from the rest of the series much like how 'Zatoichi and the chess expert' and 'Zatoichi the outlaw' did (that is if you watched the films in the order it was released).
'Zatoichi and the Fugitives' features some of the most ruthless villains to have appeared in any of the zatoichi films preceding this title. These villains really gave 'Zato no Ichi' (played by Shintaro Katsu) a tough time. Its the first time I actually worried for his safety which is a rarity since he is mostly portrayed as a practically invincible swordsmen as seen in 'Adventures of Zatoich' where he slayed an entire guard post with scores of skilled swordsmen. However this time Zatoichi has many close calls which gives a change of pace from the mass-slaying zatoichi we are so used to, suspense is no stranger to this film.
Takashi Shimura of 'Seven Samurai' and 'Red Beard' fame that played Dr Junan really left me impressed. The dynamic between the blind gangster/swordsmen/anma and the kind-hearted doctor made for a very entertaining watch. Takashi Shimura did not disappoint.
The use of Manzai comedy and the customary gambling scene where Zatoichi always manages to split the loaded dice in half is left out of this film. Instead one can expect a dark and suspenseful tale with a very solid story that doesn't feel too reminiscent of the previous 17 films.
If you have made it to the 18th installment of the long-time running zatoichi series than that means your already hooked to this very likable icon. Zatoichi and the fugitives is definitely one of my favorite Zatoichi films.
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