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Surviving the Game (1994)

6.1
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 7,417 users  
Reviews: 54 user | 27 critic

A homeless man is hired as a survival guide for a group of wealthy businessmen on a hunting trip in the mountains, unaware that they are killers who hunt humans for sport, and that he is their new prey.

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(as Ernest Dickerson)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Walter Cole (as Charles Dutton)
...
...
Wolfe Sr.
...
John Griffin
...
Derek Wolfe Jr
...
Hank
...
Security Guard
Lawrence C. McCoy ...
Hotel Clerk
...
Taxi Driver
Jacqui Dickerson ...
Taxi Passenger
...
Homeless Father
Frederic Collins Jr. ...
Homeless Child
Steven King ...
Mercedes Driver
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Storyline

Mason, who lives on the streets, wants to cease his life when on the same day his two best friends die: His dog and an older man with whom he shared his food and roof. Just in time Cole, from a charity organization, can prevent his suicide and also offers him a quite well paid job as servant for a hunting party in the Rocky Mountains. Mason accepts the job and flies with them to a hut in the wilderness where they prepare everything for the four rich businessmen who want to hunt something special. Mason does not yet know that he is the victim of their sports that should lead to the basic insticts of man, but they did not count with his cleverness... Written by Volker Boehm

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Jack Mason knows he's going to die someday. But today he's not in the mood. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 April 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Anthropino thirama  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$7,400,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$7,690,013 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Almost all of the scenes that are depicted in the "city" are filmed within a two block area in downtown Wenatchee, Washington. The area filmed was in a two block perimeter of Mission, Orondo, Palouse and Columbia streets with the majority of the film scenes in the alley way behind the Liberty Theater off of Mission St. This area also includes the infamous Bruce Hotel which is still there today; however it has not been a hotel since the early 2000 and is now Bruce Transitional Housing for the homeless. See more »

Goofs

After dinner, Doc Hawkins offers Mason a full pack of cigarettes with a few of the cigarettes sticking out of the top of the packet holding the lid open by placing it on the table. In the next shot when Doc Hawkins pushes the packet closer to Mason the packet is half empty with no cigarettes sticking out . See more »

Quotes

Jack Mason: [to Burns] What is it about hunting animals that gets you off?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Kicking and Screaming (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

The Goldberg Variations
Written by Johann Sebastian Bach (as Bach)
Performed by Harry Cohen
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good action film with a perfect cast
6 April 2000 | by (Finland) – See all my reviews

There are a few effective concepts in action films which are used over and over again. "Surviving the Game" uses one which was over 60 years old when the movie was made and still works like a charm. Made in 1932, "The Most Dangerous Game" is a movie about a group of people who are hunted for sport. Over the years this concept has been successfully used in big films like John Woo's "Hard Target" (which premiered less than a year before this film) as well as in DTV-films like the Lorenzo Lamas-actioner "Final Round".

The formula works. Although these films rarely offer anything new (you pretty much know the ending before the film has even started), they are very entertaining if the hero is someone who you want to win and the villains are suitably evil. "Surviving the Game" fills this order and throws in some energetic action sequences directed by Ernest R. Dickerson (I also enjoyed his "Bulletproof" a lot).

Ice-T is the hero here. When the film starts, he has no money, no family, no friends and is ready to kill himself. But when he receives a job as a hunting guide from a wealthy businessman (played by Rutger Hauer), he wants to put his life in order again. But after a good meal where Ice meets the rest of the hunters (including Gary Busey and Charles Dutton), the hunt begins and he suddenly realizes that he's the prey. Now, he must use all his strength and wit to survive.

The cast is perfect. While there are no huge stars, these people know the genre and obviously had a great time filming this movie. And there isn't any fault in the production values either. There are beautiful sceneries, a good score by Stewart Copeland and some neat stunts. The script by Eric Bernt (Virtuosity, Romeo Must Die) creates some quite interesting villains and the dialogue, while not perfect, works reasonably well. Luckily Bernt knows that he's writing an action film and doesn't even try to include any deep relationships or hidden meanings in his script.

At the end of the day, this is a good action film which is guaranteed to entertain a fan of this genre for 90 minutes. It's not the best action film ever but it's definitely above-average. This one gets an 8.


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Did Gary Busey deserve an oscar nod for his scar storytelling scene? NinjaJoe
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Gary Busey.. JohnnyRingo78
Rip off of hard target? Subliminal_LBC
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