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Film Review: Zatoichi on the Road (1963) by Kimiyoshi Yasuda

Even though traveling on the road without being allowed permanent peace anywhere is what has defined the character of Zatoichi it was not until the fifth part of the franchise this condition was put as the core theme of one of the films. Played by Shintaro Katsu, the blind masseur had become a fugitive as well as the target of many revenge schemes of individual people as well as yakuza bosses, branding him a man without a home and destined to always be on the move. While there is no direct connection to the fourth film of the series “Zatoichi the Fugitive”, you might consider these two films a closer look at this life-defining condition of the character.

At the beginning of the film, we have an almost typical moment for Zatoichi (Katsu) as he promises a dying man to escort a girl named Omitsu (Shiho Fujimura) to Edo.

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