Zatoichi [2-disc uncut version]

Zatoichi [2-disc uncut version]

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Zatoichi [2-disc uncut version]Zatoichi [2-disc uncut version]Zatoichi [2-disc uncut version]Zatoichi [2-disc uncut version]

further info

Original Name  盲俠座頭市
Starring Takeshi Kitano, Tadenobu Asano, Emoto Akira 北野武 淺野忠信 柄本明
Director Takeshi Kitano
Screen Format 16:9
Video Format NTSC
Audio Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS
Language Japanese, Cantonese
Subtitles English, Chinese
Genre Action
Version  Hong Kong
PAX-Code PAX0000095217
Item Code  4895033741572

description says: 

Zatoichi, the tale of the wandering samurai, has been expertly adapted into a modernised Jidaigeki (period action film) by 'Beat' Takeshi Kitano.
Artistic, involving and exciting. A highly recommended film from the staff here at P-A.

Zatoichi, the blind masseur/samurai, wanders into a small farming town and unwillingly gets caught up in other peoples problems.
Two geisha's visit the town to take revenge on the boss of a clan that killed their parents, a Ronin (samurai without a master) travels to the village to become a killer-for-hire so he can provide for his sick wife, and the farmers are being bullied by the neighbouring clans to pay fees for no reason.
Zatoichi soon becomes intwertwined with all these people and must take justice into his own hands.

Zatoichi is probably one of the most complete movies i have ever watched. Every character and every story is fully explored and explained.
There is never any question about "why are they there?" or "why did they do that?". The characters backgrounds are fleshed out really well and very satisfying, the Ronin (played excellently by Ichi the Killer's Kakihara, Tadanobu Asano) may have needed just a little more fleshing out but it was still very satisfying.

The acting is top notch with everybody pulling of excellent performances, they are all great; Kitano Takeshi, Tadanobu Asano, Emoto Akira, all of them were believable and fitted the characters perfectly.

Zatoichi is such a visually appealing movie.
It has artistic camera work and the outfits and set designs are unbelievably cool.
Everything right down to Kitano's groovy bleach-blonde hair is a treat for the eyes.
This is one violent movie and the special effects are well-blended with the live action screenplay, despite almost all the blood being CGI it surprisingly works well. The CGI body-part severing is perticularly well done, while the CGI swords (at a few minor parts) look pretty lame although if you squint it all looks fine ^^.

Zatoichi is a blind swordsman and durin the film his eyes are always closed, in the older movies Zatoichi (played by Shintaro Katsu) always had his eyes open showing his --nearly completely-- white eyes, while in this movie all the acting Kitano does is with his eyes closed.

Sound-wise this movie is a real treat, the modernasation is felt in the sound of farmers plowing the ground or builders building a house mixed with modern rythm and beats of electric sounds.
Perticularly impressive is the music at the huge dance festival the village holds at the end, all the classic Japanese drums mixed with modern music sounds great.

The afformentioned Festival at the end of the film feels so uplifting and creates alot of emotion.
It gives you the feeling that your journey and struggle with the characters has finally been resolved and creates the feeling of a big weight being lifted off the viewers shoulders. It is pulled off remarkebly, as well as the whole films emotional attachment, and you truly feel as though you have shared these peoples struggles and you've known them all your life.

Zatoichi is an instant classic. The story is pretty open and close, but it's how it unfolds that makes this movie great, you can watch this film alot of times before you become sick of sharing their journey, and that's a big plus. A movie with alot of replay value is money well spent.


-Adam Kitano


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customer reviews

Average rating:  (5 out of 5)
Total votes:5

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Please note that opinions expressed in any review are those of our customers and do not necessarily match those of the team.

mastakillah (2) on 13, Sep. 2004 20:03 (HKT)
Buy it now!
This is a classic remake of the orginal, alot easier to watch and a more indepth view into who Zatoichi is.
The attention to detail is amazing as you would exspect from Takeshi Kitano. A slow starter but once it gets going the plot unfolds nicely.
Classic samurai style of sword play with just enough action to please the more blood thursty out there. This is a beautifully complete film start to finish, so stop reading and go buy it for yourself.
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Einhander (33) on 24, Aug. 2004 07:11 (HKT)
Absolutely Outstanding!
This movie was great. I can\'t being to say enough good tihngs about this film. This easily ranks up there with my favorite samurai movies. IF you dont own this, you should. The fight scenes are awesome, the acting is great, the story is top notch. My hat off to you Takeshi Kitano! Zatoichi > Kill Bill
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Doug on 03, Aug. 2004 21:38 (HKT)
A Kill Bill beater.
From the word go, this film screams class. There is barely anything to criticise in the film, and it is one of my most satisfying movie experiences in recent years, and is certainly up there in my top 10 Japanese films of all time.
The action is extremely well realised, and like the rest of the film, you can tell that a great deal of effort has gone in to it. The acting is spot on, and Kitano is on his usual humourus, totally likeable form. Tadenobu Asano, probably best known in the Western World for his psycotic turn in Ichi The Killer also impresses, and shows another side to his acting that I had not yet experienced.
The only real problem I found was the CGI gore. At first glance I found it acceptable at best. I have to say though, that further into the film, it did grow on me, and upon second viewing it wasn\'t a problem.
The DVD\'s alot more interesting than it\'s Western counterpart, and is much more satisfying, as it actually cost less.
Overall, this is an excellent film and a good package. I urge any fan of Asian cienema, or indeed anyone who likes a good helping of violence and gore to add this to their collection, as in my mind, it outdoes the Kill Bill films on every level.
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yuvie_k on 28, Jul. 2004 00:23 (HKT)
This is a very fresh and comically funny approach(in certain areas- like the \'village dummy samurai\') to a samurai film.
With very stern authentic classical sword fighting.
i recommend to anyone that this film can be easily enjoyed at all levels of depth because it has someting in the film for everyone. Please do yourself justice and check out this contemparary masterpeice from Japan.
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adam_296 (23) on 14, May. 2004 12:22 (HKT)
A great samurai movie by Takeshi Kitano.
I just recently bought this movie and i thoroughly enjoyed it.
It has great style, gore, and CGI effects that have been molded into sword fighting rather seemlessly (with the odd exception).

Zatoichi is obviously a tale about a blind travelling masseur who is skilled in the art of sword fighting.
He turns up in a town that is having some political troubles with the clans. Some of the clans have jpoined toghether to become more powerful and they start harrassing the villagers for money and try to wipe out there compitition.

I wont go to deeply into the story because finding out about the characters past taes up a fair proportion of the film and i wouldnt want you to know whats going to happen while you sit through a 10min flash back :P

Aaaanyway, Zatoichi is a very entertaining samurai flick with lots of slicin and dicin and an interesting look into what things were like in olden day japan.

I was originally gonna score it 4 stars because the plot can be a bit slow every now and then. However the extra disc with the extras (while not english subbed) are fairly interesting and worthy of an extra star.
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