Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman (1971)

Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman


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Movie Info

Blind swordsman and masseur Zatoichi (Shintaro Katsu) does battle with a one-armed swordsman in this exciting installment of the Zatoichi film series. While traveling across the plains of Furukawa, the blind hero comes in contact with a one-armed swordsman, Wang Kang, and a child on the run from a band of bloodthirsty samurai. Taking refuge in their temple, Zatoichi finds himself deep in intrigue and lies as the hunt becomes a clash between the two swordsmen in a bloody fight for their lives. ~ … More

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Art House & International
Directed By:
Written By: Shintarô Katsu, Kan Shimozawa
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jul 13, 2004
Criterion Collection

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Critic Reviews for Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman

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Audience Reviews for Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman


Zatoichi Meets the One-Armed Swordsman is better than Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo. It doesn't feel the needs to needlessly inflate Wang's role. It adds a new visionary style as Wang's martial arts and fighting skills are very different to those we have seen before. It makes his scenes more exciting and his battle with Zatoichi interesting and unpredictable. Plenty of limb lopping and some emotional investment. The best thing about this film is the confrontation where neither Zatoichi, nor Wang is the villain. It doesn't chicken out from giving us a decent ending either.

Luke Baldock

Super Reviewer


On his travels, blind swordsman Zatoichi stumbles across a massacre and takes in a small boy who witnessed the event. When the killers come looking for him, Zatoichi and family friend Wang Kong or "the one-armed swordsman" pledge to defend the child at all costs. Although this installment in the long running franchise has a rather gimmicky premise, its combination of frenetic action scenes and an atmospheric historical setting makes for a good, solid samurai movie. Shintaro Katsu shifts from affable booze hound to intimidating bad ass with the greatest of ease; the scene when he rescues a local girl from the assassins is fantastic. Despite its attempt to ape the master, it's no Kurosawa as technical limitations mean a couple of scenes are so dark it's difficult to tell what's going on and the moral message at the end felt forced. But as a whole it's a very enjoyable blood & katana flick that won't disappoint fans of the genre.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer


A dream-combo of a movie with Katsu Shin and Jimmy Wang Yu, both starring as the lead characters. The differences of cultures and languages make the interaction between both characters beliavable, and thus, making the innevitable showdown more juicy.

Katsu Shin happens to have more screen time, hard to avoid being this mainly a Japanese production, but still, there is plenty of stuff to see for fans of both characters.

Tsubaki Sanjuro

Super Reviewer

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