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Zatoichi's Vengeance (1966)

Zatôichi no uta ga kikoeru (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 3 May 1966 (Japan)
Promising to make a delivery for a dying man, the blind swordsman Zatoichi comes across the usual crime gangs but also meets a blind monk who brings into question his use of violence.

Director:

Tokuzô Tanaka

Writers:

Kan Shimozawa (story), Hajime Takaiwa (scenario)
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The blind swordsman tries to locate a girl's missing father.

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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 Zatoichi learns of his sensei's murder he uncovers a horrible conspiracy involving the local government and crime family.

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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.

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Zatoichi is tricked by a crime gang into killing a man. Realizing his mistake, he sets out to protect the dead man's sister, who is conflicted in accepting his help.

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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 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 runs afoul of some evil fugitives, working for a corrupt law official.

Director: Kimiyoshi Yasuda
Stars: Shintarô Katsu, Kayo Mikimoto, Kyôsuke Machida
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Cast

Credited cast:
Shintarô Katsu ... Zatoichi
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Shigeru Amachi ... Genpachiro Kuroda
Jun Hamamura Jun Hamamura ... Blind Biwa Priest
Gen Kimura Gen Kimura ... Tamekichi
Kanae Kobayashi Kanae Kobayashi ... Tamekichi's mother
Kôichi Mizuhara Kôichi Mizuhara ... Joshuya
Mayumi Ogawa Mayumi Ogawa ... Cho / Shino
Kei Satô Kei Satô ... Boss Gonzo
Edit

Storyline

Zatoichi comes upon a dying man who asks him to give a bag of money to "Taichi". Zatoichi has no idea who this is but when he comes upon a small town harassed by gangsters, he finds that "Taichi" was the man's young son. Along his travels he also met a blind monk who makes Zatoichi question his murderous lifestyle. In trying to help the town, Zatoichi kills some gangsters and becomes a hero to the boy. He must make a choice of whether to use non-violence and set a good example, or violence and set the boy on the wrong path in life. Written by Fred Cabral <ftcabral@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated
Edit

Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

3 May 1966 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Zatoichi #13: Zatoichi's Vengeance See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Daiei Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Connections

Followed by Zatoichi's Conspiracy (1973) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Zatoichi soul searching
1 February 2005 | by Tom (bighouseaz)See all my reviews

This entry in the series begins with a hilarious scene wherein a Zatoichi suffering from a cold is surrounded by a gang of thugs. The usual occurs and the coup de grâce is delivered with a sneeze!

But the most interesting character in the film is the traveling, blind, pipa-playing priest. The priest is uncommonly wise and quickly takes the measure of Zatoichi. Zatoichi is pronounced to be a 'chuto hampa', belonging neither to common folk who look down upon him as a cripple, nor to the blind community because of his extraordinary abilities. This explains Zatoichi's loneliness, which is a common theme throughout the series. The priest extols Zatoichi to put away the sword. And Zatoichi does at one point, enjoying a meal in the forest with the blind priest, carrying a normal cane. Zatoichi's samurai rival draws near, and Zatoichi confesses that he is afraid.

True, in the end there is no catharsis. The film concludes with the normal string of confrontations with gang members and a showdown with the samurai. Still, there is a level of feeling and introspection in this film that continues on into the next film in the series. This compelling blend of humor, human struggle, and violence is sure to please a wide audience.


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