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Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray

United States
Disney / Buena Vista | 2003 | 116 min | Rated R | Sep 15, 2009

Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman (Blu-ray)
Large:


Video
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Original aspect ratio: 1.85:1

Audio
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Japanese: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 2.0

Subtitles
English SDH, Spanish, Arabic

Discs
50GB Blu-ray Disc
Single disc (1 BD)

Playback
Region free

Price
List price: $20.00, Price history

New from: $49.99
Available from Amazon sellers

Buy Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman on Blu-ray Movie

Price
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Movie rating
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
7.7
55
ratings.


Blu-ray rating
Video 3.3 of 53.3
Audio 3.2 of 53.2
Extras 2.4 of 52.4
Based on 3 user reviews

Movie appeal

 
Foreign100%
Drama74%
Crime23%
Comedy-
Action-
38%
popularity
244
collections
8
fans




Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman

 (2003)

Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray offers decent video and audio in this enjoyable Blu-ray release

Zatôichi is a 19th century blind nomad who makes his living as a gambler and masseur. However, behind this humble facade, he is a master swordsman gifted with a lightning-fast draw and breathtaking precision. While wandering, Zatôichi discovers a remote mountain village at the mercy of Ginzo, a ruthless gang-leader. Ginzo disposes of anyone who gets in his way, especially after hiring the mighty samurai ronin, Hattori, as a bodyguard. After a raucous night of gambling in town, Zatôichi encounters a pair of geishas--as dangerous as they are beautiful--who've come to avenge their parents' murder. As the paths of these and other colorful characters intertwine, Ginzo's henchmen are soon after Zatôichi. With his legendary cane sword at his side, the stage is set for a riveting showdown.

For more about Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman and the Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray release, see Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 3.0 out of 5.

Starring: Tadanobu Asano, Michiyo Okusa, Yui Natsukawa, Guadalcanal Taka, Takeshi Kitano (Beat Takeshi)
Director: Takeshi Kitano (Beat Takeshi)

» See full cast & crew


Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray, Video Quality

  3.0 of 5

Zatoichi slashes its way onto Blu-ray with an unfaithful, over-processed 1080p/AVC-encoded transfer that has little regard for Kitano's directorial intentions, features contrast boosting that changes the film's palette, and suffers from enough edge enhancement and noise reduction to blind any videophile who looks too closely. Ironically, portions of the supplemental package are devoted to the exact aesthetic Kitano desired for his film; an aesthetic that isn't represented by the high definition presentation we see before us. It isn't a dramatic discrepancy -- fans readying their pitchforks shouldn't expect a Halloween-esque snafu -- but it is disheartening nonetheless. Unfortunately, the hits keep on coming. While colors are bold and black levels remain deep throughout, depth is flat on occasion and dimensionality is unreliable. And even though detail is much sharper than it is on the domestic and international DVD releases of the film, textures are sometimes smeared, ringing is a consistent issue, and clarity wavers depending on a variety of variables (shot-to-shot lighting chief among them). Likewise, the image is far cleaner than it's been before, but artifacting, banding, edge halos, and some minor crush still creep in and spoil the proceedings.

As it stands, those who crave a slick and shiny picture (and aren't sensitive to the side-effects of EE and DNR) will probably be pleased with the results. However, Zatoichi diehards and discerning videophiles will be shocked by how little respect the transfer technicians have paid to Kitano's work.


Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  3.0 of 5

Imagine a furrowed brow thirtysomething tilting back his head, shaking his fist at the heavens and bellowing, "ENGLISH DUBS!!!" Picture that and you'll have a pretty good idea of my reaction to Disney's Ultimate Force of Four Collection lossy fiasco. Like its brethren, Zatoichi features a loud and gaudy DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track... in English. Its original Japanese language mix is presented with a flat and faulty Dolby Digital 5.1 track (640kbps) that lacks the finesse and power of its lossless counterpart. Admittedly, the differences aren't vast enough to completely dismiss the Dolby offering, but in this age of lossless milk and honey, there's absolutely no reason that the studio couldn't have granted Zatoichi two DTS-HD MA tracks. Ah well. Dialogue dominates the film, creating a rather front-heavy experience, but brief eruptions of sword-clashing violence boast enough LFE kick and rear speaker punch to keep things interesting. Prioritization is spot on, voices are intelligible, and ambience -- particularly during scenes in which the blind swordsman has to rely on his heightened senses -- is impressive. If only everything else was as admirable. Dynamics are a bit frothy, pans are occasionally stocky, directionality is inconsistent, and ambience appears and disappears at will. Ultimately, both tracks are decent but flawed, injecting too much disappointment into this release to warrant a higher score or stronger recommendation.


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Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Blu-ray, News and Updates



Today on Blu-ray - September 15th - September 15, 2009

After the conclusion of the ‘X-Men Trilogy', 20th Century Fox looked for a new way to capitalize on the extremely popular superhero property. Eventually word leaked that they would pursue a series of “origins” films which would detail the lives of the X-Men before ...

Ultimate Force of Four Blu-ray Detailed - July 23, 2009

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment has announced that they will bring the 'The Ultimate Force of Four' box set to Blu-ray on September 15th. This four-disc set will feature 'Hero', 'Iron Monkey', 'The Legend of Drunken Master' and 'Zatoichi' in 1080p AVC video ...

Four Asian Martial Arts Films on BD from Disney - June 23, 2009

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment is bringing four major Asian martial arts action movies to Blu-ray on September 15: 'The Legend of Drunken Master', 'Hero', 'Iron Monkey', and Takeshi Kitano's 'Zatoichi'. All four will be available separately or together ...

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