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The 10th Victim (Widescreen)

Marcello Mastroianni , Ursula Andress , Elio Petri    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
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Long before reality shows took over the TV airwaves and violent parodies like Series 7 and Battle Royale hit international screens, Elio Petri made this campy social satire of a future in which the bored, the ambitious, and the just plain violent can sign up for a deadly game of cat and mouse. "The Big Hunt is necessary as a social safety valve," explains one TV personality. "Why control births when we can control deaths?" Marcello Mastroianni, who plays the womanizing Italian media darling with a gift for ingenious assassinations, becomes the target of sexy champion Ursula Andress, a New York Amazon with a wardrobe as deadly as it is chic. She'll pocket $1 million if she can successfully kill Mastroianni, her 10th and last victim, but on the side she concocts a deal to do the deed in concert with a live song-and-dance extravaganza mounted by a tea company.

Directed with tongue firmly in cheek, Petri lampoons the whole media obsession with high-risk contests and games of chance with cool style, absurdly chic fashions, a bouncy score of organ riffs and funky lounge sounds, and a comically blasé performance by Mastroianni. It's like Fellini gone ballistic with a hint of Divorce, Italian Style: a battle of the sexes in a world where spontaneous shootouts are forever erupting in the fringes of the frame. --Sean Axmaker

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the better Bond-era relics.... May 16 2003
Format:VHS Tape
This movie was made on the VERY cheap, but a lot was made from that cheap! Marcello Mastroanni and Ursula Andress star in this sly satire on violence and population control. Their characters live in a 21st century world where an international game of cowboys and indians using real bullets and lethal devices has been authorized by the world government. The story focuses on them as Marcello tries to avoid being killed by Ursula in a game that trades off hunter and victim roles in a series of ten alternating runs, where the winner is awarded one million dollars.
Marcello plays a laid-back pauper in the game with nowhere near the resources of his hunter, a jetset-style adventuress played by Andress. It's a comedy of errors and sixities fad satire as repo men come to exact a pound of flesh for the money Marcello owes them from past hunts, and he pleads with them not to take his priceless comic book collection.
The climax of the movie takes place on the set of a commercial orchestrated by the Andress character, Caroline, AND Marcello, (same name as his character,) where Marcello is to pitch "Ming Tea" to the masses as he nails Caroline, seemingly, on the set of the show SHE put together, assuming her OWN victory!
The movie has one of the coolest jazz scores you'll ever hear, scat sung by a woman named Mina, accompanied by that typical, modern, Felliniesque pop organ. Elio Petri directs the two international stars and manages to make Rome look like it is, indeed, in the 21st century without spending a cent on special effects. (The killer bra Andress uses to kill her ninth victim is about it on that score, as a matter of fact!)
Marcello plays his role VERY tongue in cheek and a scene where he conducts a sun worshipping ceremony is one of the funniest you'll see in a sixties film...
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4.0 out of 5 stars THE 10th VICTIM Jan. 20 2003
An early forerunner in the futuristic "legalized-killing-as-TV-entertainment" genre, The 10th Victim lays the groundwork for many subsequent films including Roller Ball, The Running Man, and most recently Daniel Minahan's Series 7: The Contenders. Briefly summarized: in the 21st Century Marcello Mastroianni and Ursula Andress are two all-star assassins pitted against each other in "The Big Hunt," an international game of legalized murder in which a score of 10-kills awards the victor a prize of one million dollars. What sets this film apart from the others is not so much the plot (as while it may be the original in concept, its followers certainly succeed better in overall craft and more pointed satire) as the permanent aesthetic time/date-stamp of 1960's camp. The 10th Victim is a 60's version of the future, in the very best sense. It's a future full of awesome color schemes, ultra-cool music, great furniture, swanky pads, and characters that just ooze with sexual energy. The gem of this film is an opening sequence in which Andress dances around her ninth victim in a hipster club, fashionably slapping the men in the audience with cool and choreographed abandon before mowing down her adversary with bullets fired from a gun hidden in her bra (a gimmick later ripped for the Fembots in Austin Powers). And while the film offers a couple of other moments that approach the brilliance of this opening, its full potential is never realized -- things are not pushed nearly far enough. My biggest complaint: the alligator death chair catapult gizmo is never put to full effect, though perhaps I'm just yearning for the very thing this film means to comment on - more bloody spectacle. All in all it's definitely worth seeing, though you might supplement it with a healthy dose of Mario Bava's Danger Diabolik for good measure.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This isn't camp. This is hip. Aug. 9 2001
By A Customer
Who wants to be a millionaire? Don't answer trivia questions. Just kill 10 people before they can kill you! This is one of the few movies I know that perfectly evokes the era of the mid-1960s (despite the fact it is set at some undefined future date). I have loved it since first seeing it thirty or more years ago. Yes, this is where Mike Meyers stole the gun bra joke for Austin Powers, but this is social satire not pop culture sendups. (Literacy is evidenced by collecting rare comic books. In Italy people still believe in family enough not to turn their parents in for disposal. There's no shooting in restaurants.) At the same time as it is laugh out loud funny, it is also very very hip, in the best 60s sense. And am I the only one who has never been able to get the theme song from this film out of his head? Finally, I'm very pleased to see this film in Italian, even if my Italian doesn't extend beyond a few Paolo Conte songs. The old dubbed version (the only version I've previously encountered) did away with at least a couple lines of dialogue (if the subtitles are to be trusted) that I suppose the censors didn't like, plus no end of other dialogue just because that's how they dub movies. The hunt game computer in the Italian version speaks in a voice both so menacing and goofy that it reminded me why I once hated computers. And there is also at least one in-joke about Marcello Mastroianni clearly expunged from the dubbed version.
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3.0 out of 5 stars RUNNING (WO-)MAN Aug. 6 2001
A curiosity has just popped out of the cellar of Anchor Bay : THE 10th VICTIM, an italian movie directed in 1965 by Elio Petri. Adapted from a short novel of Robert Sheckley by the well-known screenplay writer Tonino Guerra, THE 10th VICTIM presents a Marcello Mastroianni with blond hair and an Ursula Andress with blond skin. Amusing.
The action takes place in a near future in Rome, Italy. In order to prevent wars, governments have invented " The Big Hunting ". The players must win 10 times to gain the right to leave with a million dollars prize. In this game, to win means to kill the hunted if you are the hunter or to discover and kill the hunter if you're the hunted. A slight pre-RUNNING MAN flavour, isn't it ?
THE 10th VICTIM is more a parodical and satirical comedy than an action movie and presents at least one scene deserving to stay in our memories, the first scene involving a masked Ursula Andress dancing and slapping the faces of the "Masoch Club" male audience before killing her adversary in a very stylish manner.
If you like italian comedies or a smart satire of the television, religion or our political institutions, the movie is certainly worth a look. If, like me, you are an amateur of B movies of the sixties, THE 10th VICTIM is a must have.
Bonus features include an english dubbed version, the italian version with optional english subtitles, the theatrical trailer and an incomplete filmography of Marcello Mastroianni and Ursula Andress. Great images and sound.
A DVD zone discovery.
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Most recent customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars was fun then, but has aged horribly
Overrated. Pure 60s camp, was fun then, but has aged horribly.
Published 1 month ago by Robert C. Mercier
5.0 out of 5 stars I Love It
This is a great dark comedy - It depicts a future of where it can go if the gun freaks of today get their way
Published 7 months ago by James Jay
4.0 out of 5 stars Cool visit to 1960's Italian style
Very light. Highly enjoyable. Especially as a visit to Italian style in the 1960's. Marcello is Marcello and Ursula is Ursula, but that's probably why you would want to buy this... Read more
Published 18 months ago by William Shaw
4.0 out of 5 stars Ballistic Bossoms
The Italians really did 1960's camp the best. I mean, what is campier than Ursula Andress chasing a man around in a lavender, backless pant suit, while brandishing a pistol? Read more
Published on March 9 2003 by KSG
4.0 out of 5 stars 10th Victim
This movie is what I call one of my "guilty pleasures" and when I discovered it had come out on DVD I had to get it. Read more
Published on Feb. 27 2003
... Saw this great, snazzy, jazzy, production-designed-heaven back in '76 on a double bill ... and was never able to forget it. So thrilled it's on video. Read more
Published on Sept. 19 2002 by L. S. Slaughter
4.0 out of 5 stars Rich and bored is not boring, or is it?
In a deadly 10 round spectator sport participants alternate between being hunters and hunted. Naturally, the huntress falls in love with the "victim" of her final round... Read more
Published on March 27 2002 by Eric Anderson
4.0 out of 5 stars Rich and bored is not boring, or is it?
In a deadly 10 round spectator sport participants alternate between being hunters and hunted. Naturally, the huntress falls in love with the "victim" of her final round... Read more
Published on March 27 2002 by Eric Anderson
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite films of all.
A brilliant movie based on a superb story by Robert Sheckley. This is sci-fi as it should be: depicting the future as theme & variation on today's manias & rituals. Read more
Published on Oct. 9 2001 by inframan
3.0 out of 5 stars Be the First to Sneer
I had never heard of "The Tenth Victim," and purchased it largely because it was directed by Elio Petri, whose "Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion" I... Read more
Published on Aug. 7 2001 by Charles S. Tashiro
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