Zatoichi And The Doomed Man came out September 18 1965 and stars Shintaro Katsu as Zatoichi the blind masseur. The movie is written by Shozaburo Asai and directed by Kazuo Mori. It's the 11th in the series of 26 films with the same actor.
The movie opens with Ichi getting 50 lashes for illegal gambling. He's tossed in a cell with another man who tells him he was jailed for something he didn't do. He wants Zatoichi to tell his boss and wife what happened so they can send help and save him. Zatoichi says he will. The next morning Ichi gets let out of jail and he's on his way.
On the road he changes his mind, thinking that when he gets involved with someone else's problems it only leads to trouble and death. Being that it's a Zatoichi film the trouble follows him. On the road Zatoichi meets a incompetent grifter who steals his identity to scam some money. It's all played pretty comically but Zatoichi feels he must follow the guy and set him right. The imposter is annoying and of course it turns out he went to the same town that Ichi wanted to avoid.
Zatoichi catches the imposter and probably saves his life. Zatoichi stirs things up a bit as he pokes around. The boss's plan unravels as he gets more and more nervous. He sends out men to take care of the masseur but they don't have much luck. There's plenty of fighting and slaughter for those that like that sort of thing. There's still some good amount of life and strife to keep those that like that sort of story involved.
Zatoichi sorts things out, leaving the corpses where they fall. I wondered who, in the reality of the movie, cleans up all the dead men? It's a lot of work and they had no place cold to put the bodies. The imposter gets arrested and Zatoichi laughs as they drag him out of the scene. There's a big fight, in the fog, on the beach amongst the village's fishing nets. At the end Zatoichi is the last man standing. He continues his journey. Even though the stories are similar I'm still enjoying them and that's after seeing some of them for the 4th or 5th time. You can see the movie on YouTube at the link in the title above. It's worth a look.