The 10th Victim

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The 10th Victim
The 10th Victim.jpg
Directed by Elio Petri
Produced by Carlo Ponti
Starring Marcello Mastroianni
Ursula Andress
Music by Sergio Bardotti
Piero Piccioni
Release dates
  • 1 December 1965 (1965-12-01)
Running time
92 minutes
Country Italy
Language Italian
Elsa Martinelli in The 10th Victim (1965).

The 10th Victim (Italian: La decima vittima) is a 1965 Italian/French international co-production science fiction film directed by Elio Petri and starring Marcello Mastroianni and Ursula Andress, and featuring Elsa Martinelli in a supporting role. The picture is based on Robert Sheckley's 1953 short story "Seventh Victim". Sheckley later published a novelization of the film in 1966,[1] and two sequels (Victim Prime and Hunter/Victim) in 1987 and 1988, respectively.[2]


In the near future, big wars are avoided by giving individuals with violent tendencies a chance to kill in the Big Hunt. The Hunt is the most popular form of entertainment in the world and also attracts participants who are looking for fame and fortune. It includes ten rounds for each competitor, five as the hunter and five as the victim. The survivor of ten rounds becomes extremely wealthy and retires. Scenes switch between the pursuit, romance between the hunter and the victim, and a narrator explaining the rules and justification of the Hunt.

Caroline Meredith (Ursula Andress) is the huntress armed with a high caliber Bosch shotgun looking for her tenth victim. Marcello Poletti (Marcello Mastroianni) is the victim. He is reluctant to kill Meredith because he is not sure that she is his hunter; later he is more reluctant because they have become romantically involved. To maximize financial gain, Meredith wants to get a perfect kill in front of the cameras as she has negotiated a major sponsor from the Ming Tea Company.

Plot differences from the original story[edit]

The original short story was written from the point of view of a man hunting his seventh target, a woman, whereas in the movie she is the hunter. He finds her apparently defenseless sitting in a cafe. Talking to her, she tells him how she is new to the game but could not bear to kill her own target, and now expects to die. The hunter falls in love with his victim, as in the movie, and eventually reveals who he is. She has tricked him; she shoots him, joining the ranks of the "Sevens".


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Di Filippo, Paul. "The 10th Victim". Science Fiction Weekly. Archived from the original on November 15, 2007. Retrieved 2007-01-06. 
  2. ^ Frelik, Paweł; Mead, David G. (2007). Playing the Universe: Games and Gaming in Science Fiction. Maria Curie-Skłodowska University Press. p. 134. ISBN 978-83-227-2656-3. 

External links[edit]