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Zatoichi and the Chess Expert (1965)

Zatôichi jigoku tabi (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Adventure, Drama | 24 December 1965 (Japan)
A samurai with a high skill in chess makes friends with Zatoichi, who finds that things become peculiar in his presence.

Director:

Kenji Misumi

Writers:

Daisuke Itô, Kan Shimozawa (story)
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Zatoichi's trek through 88 temples to atone for his violent past is interrupted as he stumbles into a village terrorized by a violent yakuza boss.

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The blind swordsman tries to locate a girl's missing father.

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When Zatoichi witnesses the murder of a young mother he promises to deliver the baby to the father. Along the way he gains the help of a reluctant criminal.

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Zatoichi, while fighting off the usual group of gangsters, meets the apprentice of the swordsman who created his blade, who relays bad news about the sword.

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In a town where debt-ridden peasants are being ruthlessly exploited, Zatoichi is forced to take sides between a cruel yakuza boss and his seemingly altruistic rival.

Director: Satsuo Yamamoto
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Zatoichi promises to deliver a maiden safely home but finds two dangerous gangs have a mysterious interest in the young girl.

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Zatoichi is mistaken for a thief. To clear his name he must find and defeat the real villain.

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After an artist is threatened by the yakuza into creating valuable but highly illegal pornography, the law aims to execute him. Zatoichi, having been honor bound to protect the man and his family, must now run against the law.

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After being wounded in a fight, Zatoichi is nursed to health by a young woman and her father. Now indebted to the family, he works to protect their ferry business from local thugs.

Director: Kazuo Ikehiro
Stars: Shintarô Katsu, Tatsuo Endô, Takashi Etajima
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Cast

Credited cast:
Shintarô Katsu ... Zatoichi
Mikio Narita Mikio Narita ... Tadasu Jumonji
Chizu Hayashi Chizu Hayashi ... Enoshimeya
Kaneko Iwasaki Kaneko Iwasaki ... Tane
Gaku Yamamoto Gaku Yamamoto ... Tomonoshin Sagawa
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Saburô Date
Tatsuo Endô ... Yakuza boss of Ejimaya
Takuya Fujioka Takuya Fujioka
Ryô Horikawa
Kanae Kobayashi Kanae Kobayashi ... Widow Tarozaemon
Fujio Suga Fujio Suga ... Injury prone Banyu yakuza
Rokkô Toura Rokkô Toura
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Storyline

Zatoichi makes friends with a dangerous chess player, while fending off angry yakuza and bloodthirsty relatives out for revenge, and trying to save a sick child. Meanwhile, his luck with dice is turning... Written by eirias <eirias@iname.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

24 December 1965 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Zatoichi and the Chess Expert See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Daiei Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Daieicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Zatoichi: You have to understand, Otane. The man you're looking at is dirt. And everyone who comes close to him or touches him, in one way or another gets muddied by that dirt. There's nothing I can do about being dirt myself, but I don't want you to get mired in my dirt.
See more »

Connections

Follows Zatoichi on the Road (1963) See more »

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User Reviews

Typically wonderful...
16 June 2004 | by Gary-The King-ToozeSee all my reviews

Zatoichi films are all pretty similar. There are gambling (dice) scenes, Zatoichi vs. large gang fighting scenes, massaging scenes (usually of beautiful women), Zatoichi eating and drinking scenes, bath scenes, travel sequences, often a scenes with a child (or children) - and they all wonderful. One other consistent element is that they all are shot in glorious widescreen and contain some exquisite cinematography. I always find at least a couple of scenes in each film of this series to be quite breathtaking - certainly worthy of pondering over. I find these films so appealing regardless that I know exactly what is to come.

In this chapter Zatoichi meets a rather confident and intelligent foe in the guise of a chess expert. This is, of course, after he has easily defeated all his lesser foes who seek vengeance on his gambling prowess (sound familiar?). We have a female love interest and Zatoichi spurning her because of his opinion of his own "lowlife" status. All in all I was more enthralled with the first 3/4's of this particular film, but felt it failed slightly at the end. Still I think the world of Zatoichi so I give this 4.5 /5


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