In this early martial arts action-drama, Matt Carver (Joel Holt) is an American who studied in Japan and is returning for his first visit in quite some time. Not long after he arrives, Matt comes into the possession of an unusual coin, which soon makes him the target of British ne'er-do-well Ivan Mayberry (Frank Blaine) and a band of Japanese toughs. After becoming reacquainted with his old friend Akira (Akira Shiga), who now runs a karate school in Tokyo, Matt learns just why the coin is so valuable -- it features code that, if correctly unraveled, will lead its bearer to a fortune in platinum. As Matt tries to sort out the good guys from the bad guys, he's forced to put his skills in karate to use. One of the first feature films centered on the martial arts (and certainly the first in English), Karate, the Hand of Death was made with the cooperation of the Japanese Karate Foundation.