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The 10th Victim (La Decima vittima) [Import USA Zone 1]
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THE 10TH VICTIM has never been released in UK before. Yet this innovative film by Oscar® Winning director Elio Petri's has earned Cult status wherever seen, not only because of its exquisite Pop-Art visuals, clever humour, incisive observation and astonishing foresight of today's mass media, but mostly because Ursula Andress sports another iconic bikini - and this time it literally is deadly…
Set in the near future, the film opens with Andress notching her penultimate kill in "The Big Hunt", a reality-TV style game show televised the world over. Created as a solution to overpopulation and human aggression, the show selects a "Hunter" and a "Victim" at random and they then chase one another around the globe: kill your 10th victim and you win Millions! Andress' next victim is cool, Italian, Marcello (Mastroianni) who's also got just one more kill before the jackpot!
Exploiting the kinky fusion of sex and violence powered by the chemistry between Marcello Mastroianni and 007 sex-icon Ursula Andress, this groundbreaking film now shows how vastly influential it was: the relationship between Mastroianni and Andress has been copied in Hollywood films like Mr. and Mrs. Smith; the subject of death becoming a spectator sport has been imitated by Rollerball and Schwarzenegger's Running Man (among others) and announced our age of increasingly outrageous reality-TV. The outstanding innovative 10TH VICTIM by Oscar® Winning director Elio Petri finally gets the exposure it deserves, with its stunning visuals (recreated in Austin Powers) highlighted in this new Shameless release mastered from restored HD sources in the original full widescreen film format, with English audio. Complete and uncut.
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Le scénario s’inspire d’une nouvelle de Robert Scheckley. Dans la société du futur a été instaurée la « Grande chasse », un jeu où les participants sont alternativement chasseur et victime, et où ils peuvent tuer en toute impunité leur adversaire, désigné par tirage au sort, et sur lequel ils sont abondamment renseignés. Celui qui gagne la dixième manche jouit ensuite d’avantages importants. Une participante américaine qui ne risque pas de passer inaperçue (Caroline Meredith, interprétée par Ursula Andress) se voit proposer un contrat où elle sera filmée au moment où elle élimine son adversaire pour la publicité d'une marque de thé (les thés Ming, pour tout vous dire). Sa victime désignée, un certain Marcello Poletti (Marcello Mastroianni), habite Rome, ce qui n’est pas mal trouvé comme décor pour un reality show, comme on dit en français. Meredith va donc le rejoindre avec une équipe de tournage.Lire la suite ›
Mastroianni porte le film comme à son habitude avec plus que du talent: la simplicité de son jeu en donne toute la force.
Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Marcello at his Mastroianniest
Ursula in full sexual animal mode
60's design and fashion
Dry to the exreme humor
Stylistic Italian direction
Then buy this disc! Oh yea, the story ain't half bad either.
Ursula Andress (at the peak of her beauty and animal sensuality) and Marcello Mastroianni (the epitome of jaded cool) play hunter and victim, respectively, both vying for a million-dollar prize if one can murder the other, and each also lining up a corporate sponsor who will pay out if the killing can be timed to happen during a live commercial for their product. But love, of all things, intervenes (not to mention his ex-wife and mistress), seriously complicating their cat-and-mouse game of death. Along the way we are treated to some great futuristic pop-art set designs and decor, terrific, catchy Eurojazz soundtrack, and breezy satire of the media, society's fetishization of violence, religion, marriage and divorce, Bondian intrigue, television, and shameless, opportunistic corporate advertising. Several future fads are accurately predicted, including robotic pets and tawdry reality TV shows, and a number of elements from the film are recognizable as being "borrowed" by Mike Myers for the Austin Powers movies, most notably Andress's ballistic bikini top.
I have found that The 10th Victim actually improves with each viewing, as each time I pick up on more details or bits of dialogue that had previously escaped me. *Spoiler Alert* The only disappointing aspect of the film, in my opinion, is the "comic," slapstick ending tacked on at the insistence of American distributor Joseph E. Levine. I'm about 99% sure that the movie is really supposed to end just after Mastroianni shoots Andress, but Levine apparently considered that ending too downbeat. It's pretty obvious that the final scenes amid some ruins and on an airplane were added after the fact as they are completely at odds with the tone of the rest of the movie and attempt to provide the film with a wacky, screwball "happy ending." But other than the denouement ringing false, the film is nearly perfectly realized.
When I heard that Blue Underground was releasing this on Blu-ray I wondered if it would really be worth the price of an upgrade. Thankfully, the answer is a resounding "yes!" The brightness, color saturation and balance, sharpness, and detail are vastly improved over the Anchor Bay DVD. While the word "revelation" gets thrown around perhaps a bit too freely when describing Blu-rays in comparison with their previous DVD incarnations, in this case it is apropos. The BU transfer makes the Anchor Bay disc look positively sick in comparison--dark and muddy, with faded, poorly balanced color and mushy detail. The difference here is literally like night and day; it's astounding how much better the Blu-ray looks when compared side-by-side with the DVD. The 1080p transfer does bring out the grain a bit, but never to the point of distraction. Fleshtones are natural, detail is crisp, and the muted hues of the Anchor DVD give way to sizzling, neon-vivid greens, yellows, and fuchsias. If you are a big fan of this movie, you really need to upgrade to the Blu-ray; it's almost like seeing the film again for the first time, and easily the biggest improvement in a Blu-ray over a previous DVD release I have yet seen. (Note that Blue Underground's 2009 DVD release is merely a repackage of the Anchor Bay edition, so the Blu-ray is the only way to see the much-improved remaster.)
Blue Underground also up the ante with some enticing supplements, including a somewhat washed-out U.K. release trailer (1:47), which is the same one as on the Anchor DVD, and a superior, gorgeous-looking Italian trailer (2:31), with English subtitles, that actually gives you a much better idea of what the movie's about than the rather inscrutable U.K. trailer (both are presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen). A gallery of stills, posters, and pressbook art and a Mastroianni still gallery are also present, as well as an hour-and-a-half documentary on Mastroianni (which I haven't watched yet). But even without these extras, the far superior transfer makes this a more than worthy upgrade. If you love this film as much as I do, I guarantee you will be delighted.
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.