In this 1960s satire directed by Elio Petri, it’s survival of the fittest in the 21st century, and population control is performed perfunctorily, through legalized murder in a game called “The Big Hunt.” The “game” comes down to two assassins, both of whom are targeting each other: Marcello Mastroianni (who plays a womanizing Italian media darling) and a pistol-wielding, purple-pantsuit-clad Ursula Andress.
Elio Petri was born in Rome on January 29th, 1923 into a modest family, his father being a coppersmith. As only son, he grew up in the working-class area of the city before attending school where he was noted for his intelligence.
After being expelled for political reason from San Giuseppe di Merode, a school run by priest on Piazza di Spagna, he embarked on a career combining political militancy, film-journalism and the coordination of cultural activities for the youth organization of the italian communist party. He wrote for Unita’ and for Gioventu’ nuova as well as for Citta’ aperta. He left the party in 1956 after the Hungarian rising. A friend of Gianni Puccini, he was introduced through him to Giuseppe De Santis and became Assistant to the director of Bitter Rice.
He collaborated, without being credited for it, on Rome 11 O’Clock (1952), carrying out the preliminary inquiry among the real-life protagonist of the drama. The inquiry was published in book form in 1956… read more