29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Picture a corrupt town, where the governor and the yakuza are thick as thieves, and poor village girls are regularly enslaved in the local brothel, where they are beaten and starved, then their virginity sold to valued customers. Picture a pit of a town, where the closest thing they have to an honest man is a dice-thrower in the local gambling den, Denroku the Fox, who cheats his customers at dice but loves his family and teenage daughter enough to defy the town bosses, risking everything and causing the kidnapping of his daughter. Into this town, enter Zatoichi.
"Zatoichi 10: Zatoichi's Revenge" ("Zatôichi nidan-kiri") is a somewhat atypical entry in the long-running Zatoichi series. While it follows the same theme of "Zatoichi comes to town and cleans up the bad guys" theme, the villains are a little worse here, and the 13-year old girl being sold into prostitution is a dark image. Every man in the town appears to be evil, and it is just a matter of degrees. Every woman in the town is a victim.
Zatoichi is lured into the web of corruption due to the murder of his old master, Hikonoichi, and the brothel-enslavement of his virgin daughter, Osayo. Osayo refuses to take customers, and is in a constant state of torture, but Zatoichi, allied with Denroku the Fox who longs to free his daughter, take it upon themselves to rescue the women of the town.
True to the Zatoichi legacy, there are some amazing swordfights here, and Shintaro Katsu shows why he has been able to carry this film series for so long. The battle in the dice-den, the brothel raid, and finally and more amazing, Zatoichi alone against the assembled horde of the corrupt town. It is a defiant and great battle, but makes you wonder what kind of town is left after Zatoichi inevitably leaves. A town without men, at any rate!
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2002
Format: VHS TapeVerified Purchase
This is classic Zatoichi at his best. I really enjoyed this film. I own nearly all of them and this one is one of my favorites for sure, but hey they are all great! If you like when a lone figure comes into a town and brings justice with his sword and skill you will love this film, or any in the Zatoichi series. He is an unusual character, a blind masssuer and really very humble. But when things need setting straight his sword and skill come into action. I'm glad I was able to find these films on Amazon and add them to my collection. They are well worth the money. This type of filmaking is a lost art today. ... Shintaro Katsu who plays Ichi is an incredible actor. I highly reccomend any of these films to those who are interested in samurai or martial arts films but I really think they can be enjoyable to anyone.
on February 4, 2011
But it has its lighter side. Most of the action, scenes and plots orbit a brothel. Basically, women end up working to pay off debts or loans or taxes their families can not pay. This is, in fact, very much what happened in Japan at the time period and makes for a dark background. True, while there is a wonderful father-daughter relationship, and some great comedy scenes, this film is mostly the dark side of society. There are scenes where women are beaten; there is talk of virgins being deflowered, so on, and so forth.
And there are lots of artistic scenes. Near the end, while Zatoichi is fighting the gangsters and law enforcement in the streets the film plays a western guitar in the background, giving it a shot-down of the Old West feel to it. I also loved the food vendor scenes in the street. There are only two, but both end up being funny as heck. Flashbacks are also shown in a greyish black&white theme sometimes with the music totally removed, leaving only the sounds that people, or in one case, a sword make. The directors and crew of the series always seem to be testing out new ideas and new tricks.
A well balanced film. Amazing that number 10 is in some ways better than number 1, and as I have all of them, and plan to watch them till the end, so I hope they are all as good as this one. If maybe a tad less depressing.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on November 2, 2005
J.H. Sweet's review applies to Zatoichi's Episode #13, not
this one. Please don't mislead customers.
on December 28, 2007
This film stands out for its swordsplay, difficult to do considering all Zatoichi films feature superlative swordsplay. This one in particular shows what Shintaro Katsu can really do with a blade. The story here is not the strongest in the series when it really should be, considering Zato's murdered master is central to the plot. Still a solid entry, beautifully done. Director Akira Inoue consistently turned out some of the better Zatoichi films (in my opinion).
on January 3, 2013
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I will not bother to write a different review for each Zatoichi movie. I have all twenty six of his movies and have watched all of them multiple times. Although the believability of a blind swordsman is next to nill, Zatoichi makes it believable because you will fall in love with the character. Shintaro Katsu is one of my all time favorite actors.
on August 29, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant VideoVerified Purchase
Blind guy with a sword, who gets drunk and gambles with Yakuza! Then cuts them down! It does not get better then that!