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4.0 out of 5 stars
The 10th Victim [Blu-ray]
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Showing 1-10 of 10 reviews(4 star)show all reviews
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...the scene has a LOT of relevance to the faddish religious mindset of of 70s, 80s and 90s California culture. Ursula is existential window-dressing, and it's the SUPPORTING players that add a lot to this flick: The moon worshippers, Marcello's old trainer, Elsa Martinelli as Marcello's mistress and the fellow playing Marcello's agent being prime examples.
A fine film that shows what you can do with a small amount of money and a lot of talent.
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on January 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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on March 27, 2002
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 in this highly stylized Italian 60's parody.
Until recently The 10th Victim has been worth seeing due to its strong futuristic aestetic value and black humor. However, now the theme of this movie can be seen in a new light. Today audiences - who are bored with staged nastyness - want to see the real thing. This they can find on a host of survival shows, where participants are encouraged to humiliate one another and themselves in various ways. One of the factors that has contributed to paving the way for such Reality TV are the many movies that predicted this form of entertainment. The 10th Victim is an early example.
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on March 27, 2002
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 in this highly stylized Italian 60's parody.
Until recently The 10th Victim has been worth seeing due to its strong futuristic aestetic value and black humor. However, now the theme of this movie can be seen in a new light. Today audiences - who are bored with staged nastyness - want to see the real thing. This they can find on a host of survival shows, where participants are encouraged to humiliate one another and themselves in various ways. One of the factors that has contributed to paving the way for such Reality TV are the many movies that predicted this form of entertainment. The 10th Victim is an early example.
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on March 9, 2003
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? A killer bikini top? A rest, relax and sex stop on the side of the highway? A cult of sunset worshipers in caftans on the beach? The cinematography and locations are so stylish. Rooftop jazz bars in the blaring sun, minimalist interiors decorated with giant, blinking eyeballs, New York's financial district, pre-World Trade Center and Rome and the Vatican shot from a helicopter. Death and fear, what could be funnier?
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on February 27, 2003
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. I first saw this in 1966 and although time has marched on it still is a joy to watch. Sometimes it's not because a DVD has 5 stars and excellent audio/video but because it's a personal favorite. If you agree go ahead,indulge yourself-oh,yea, try watching with the english subtitles on for subtle differences. Now let's see if the powers-that-be can manage the release of "Blow-Up"
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on June 26, 2001
I first saw this film on TV when I was in junior high. It's definitely one of the greatest '60s films ever made. Set in a future where the Pope is American, people get their kicks by participating in an assasination game. Ursula Andress is one of the best in the game (mostly due to her bra gun). The soundtrack and the production design are as outrageous as the action. It makes Austin Powers movies look like The O'Reilly Factor.
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on June 8, 2001
I first saw this film on the Million Dollar Movie on WOR Channel 9 out of NYC in 1968, and it is still on of my faves. It's droll and hip, and although it dates itself by some of the content, I still believe it was ahead of its time. Rent it at before buying. It's not for everyone. Must be seen for the opening sequence during which Ursula shoots a guy with her bikini top; this is the inspiration for the fem-bots in Austin Powers.
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Ursula Andress is in this movie. I'm writing this from fading memory since it hasn't been available in decades... but basically its about a society where the mukity mucks play a game where they are assigned a person to track and assasinate for fun. It had crisply done performances but could have had better editing. I look forward to its long awaited re-release on video.
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on March 23, 2013
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 DVD in the first place. Spoiler: Ursula never appears in the film in the pose shown on the cover -- that's just marketing. Sappy ending, but it IS a romantic comedy after all.
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