7.7/10
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11 user 7 critic

Zatoichi's Cane Sword (1967)

Zatôichi tekka tabi (original title)
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.

Director:

Kimiyoshi Yasuda

Writers:

Ryôzô Kasahara, Kan Shimozawa (story)
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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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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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A samurai with a high skill in chess makes friends with Zatoichi, who finds that things become peculiar in his presence.

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The blind masseur and swordsman, Zatoichi, searches for proof an imprisoned man's innocence.

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Zatoichi meets an infamous blind leader of a gangster organization as he contends with a gloomy ronin widower.

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

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Two of Japan and China's greatest heroic swordsman find themselves caught in a plot to protect a young child. But will national distrust and simple misunderstanding keep the two kindred spirits apart?

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Director: Kihachi Okamoto
Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Shintarô Katsu, Ayako Wakao
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Shintarô Katsu ... Zatoichi
Shiho Fujimura Shiho Fujimura ... Oshizu
Yoshihiko Aoyama Yoshihiko Aoyama ... Seikichi
Makoto Fujita Makoto Fujita ... Umazo
Kiyoko Suizenji Kiyoko Suizenji ... Oharu
Eijirô Tôno ... Senzo
Masumi Harukawa Masumi Harukawa ... Oryu
Masako Aboshi Masako Aboshi ... Omatsu the maid
Junichiro Yamashita Junichiro Yamashita ... Shinnosuke
Ryûtarô Gomi Ryûtarô Gomi ... Ronin
Fujio Suga Fujio Suga ... Seisuke Kuwayama
Tatsuo Endô Tatsuo Endô ... Iwagoro
Ryûji Kita Ryûji Kita ... Genbei Shimotsukeya
Eigorô Onoe Eigorô Onoe ... Zato
Yûsaku Terashima Yûsaku Terashima ... Noodle Shop Owner
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Storyline

Zatoichi comes upon the town of Tonda, overrun by gangsters. Using one of his favorite techniques, Zatoichi proceeds to win 8 ryo in a rigged gambling game. Of course, the local gangsters attempt to kill him, and the adventure begins. It turns out a blacksmith named Senzo examines Zatoichi's cane sword, and discovers it to be forged by his old mentor. Senzo discovers the sword is at the end of its usefulness and will break when it is used next.... Written by Matt Hartley (int1)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

3 January 1967 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Zatoichi's Cane Sword 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?

Trivia

Third time Tatsuo Endo played an antagonistic Yakuza boss in a Zatoichi movie. In the next one, Zatoichi the Outlaw (1967), he again played another Yakuza boss. See more »

Connections

Followed by Zatôichi monogatari (1974) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A true gem
14 February 2005 | by bighouseazSee all my reviews

This entry in the Zatoichi series has been reviewed extensively at IMDb for good reason. If you have grown to admire Zatoichi and enjoyed earlier films in the series, you are sure to love Zatoichi Tekka Tabi. If you are a fan of samurai films with a lot of action and spurting blood, then you will lose patience with this film. Warning for the before-mentioned samurai film fans; Zatoichi doesn't make his first kill until the 77th minute!

All of the most interesting scenes have been described by others. There is a great variety of scenes and Katsu Shintaro is at his best. I do have to mention the Duck Song scene. It is absolutely devastating. It's a short little song and dance performed by Zatoichi that blasts the boss who is hosting the party. Zatoichi finishes his song, waits, and doesn't hear any applause. The audience is stunned by his audacity. The scene continues with fabulous dialog between the boss and Zatoichi. It's pure gold.

The film eventually does take the viewer into familiar territory and by now you should know what to expect. The cinematography of Zatoichi entering the town holding an umbrella under falling snow is one of my favorite images from the series.

If you are looking to add to your Zatoichi DVD collection, this one is a no-brainer. It's terrific stuff served up by Katsu at his best.


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