The 14th entry in the long running series was simply the best up to that point. Zatoichi questioning his own legacy leaves for a pilgrimage to the 88 shrines but winds up once again facing a bandit leader and his gang while protecting an innocent woman and her village, Shot in beautiful widescreen featuring vibrant colour and solid editing this may be the best looking entry as well.
It's a shame Daiei didn't keep all of Shindo's original screenplay for this 14th entry of the series. But what's left is still a pretty entertaining film that fills the old formula with new life. The romance is more believable than usual, the morals are examined in depth (shades of High Noon?), and the final battle is frightening & emotional (bow and arrow!). One of the more curious films of the series yet.