Famous now as one of the inspirations for Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (Ursula Andress wore the first bullet-firing bra as sported by the “fembots”), director Elio Petri’s erratically engrossing science-fiction thriller has a fabulous 1960s pop art look.
In the 21st century war has been outlawed and replaced with a legalised hunting game in which the participants are licensed-to-kill assassins, with members being alternately predators and prey until they end up dead.
Anyone successfully killing 10 competitors receives permanent immunity and $10 million dollars.
The murders are broadcast on international television with the winners becoming instant celebrities.
Marcello Mastorianni plays the most successful killer, only one kill away from victory . . . and then his number comes up as a victim.
The production design is fantastic with Marcello as cool as ever, always dressed in black and wearing sunglasses, while pursued by American hunter Caroline Meredith (Ursula Andress).
Complications ensue when Caroline and Marcello fall in love with each other.
For fans of 60s pop art/science fiction, this Italian slice of retro cool is definitely one to check out.