Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo (1970)
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Critic Reviews for Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo
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Audience Reviews for Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo
Several well done bits just don't add up to a full story. As a first, there is an opening narrator to set this up as a film rooted in historical fact. Then a series of vignettes showing several fun moments for this traveling Zato. As elements of the actual story are woven in, I never really get sold on this plot. Not that it's bad (each scene is beautifully composed & shot!), but there's no rhythm or continuity - I'm never quite drawn in. That bloody scene midway through the film with the funky music? That played out more like Dozier's 1960's take on Batman and the Green Hornet. I suspect that the film is too short for the content; a two hour film or even a 2 part film would have allowed each scene to flow and gently add layers to the plot's development. Watch for several wonderful moments like blind dice, co-ed bathhouse, consort sale, meeting another competent blind-man, a nod to homosexuals being people too, and a whirlwind romance. A story was told; but the story wasn't allowed to breathe so as to tell it's own tale of myth and morality. In fact, when Ichi walks off at the end - he does so after breaking a fragile heart with cruel words worthy of a Boss. Watch for yourself and decide if this is a true Zatoichi film or an aberration.
Upon trying to return home for some peace and relaxation, Ichi discovers that the town has changed significantly in the three years he has been gone. This is the 21st film and offers some of the best swordplay yet, by Katsu of course but also Tatsuya Nakadai who delivers an impressive performance and who's swordplay is stellar. You can really tell from his finesse and confidence that he has much skill in real life as his many roles in various samurai films can attest to. The film itself is very much darker than the others and while still featuring some truly stunning battle scenes, really showcases a darker theme and how power and money can corrupt just about anyone.
Zatoichi returns in his most risquÃ© adventure. We even see boobs and have have hints at homosexuality...COR BLIMEY. It has all the right ingredients and lots of memorable moments. The best part is a frantic, nude, bath house sword fight that predates the Eastern Promise scene by nearly 40 years. It's a hilarious and exciting scene that plays to all of Zatoichi's strengths. There's also a memorable climax, with Zatoichi being in love once again and a final confrontation that comments on the jealousy of man. Consider this a "must watch" of the series.
Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo Quotes
|Zatoichi:||It is all right. It's all right this way.|
|Ronin:||I hold my grudges to the end!|
|Ronin:||You give me my only purpose to live for. If I kill you now...|
|Zatoichi:||You'll have nothing to live for.|
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