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Ein Unbekannter rechnet ab (1974)

Ten people are invited to a hotel in the Iranian desert, only to find that an unseen person is killing them one by one. Could one of them be the killer?


Peter Collinson


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Directors: Paul Bogart, Philip F. Falcone, and 2 more credits »
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Complete credited cast:
Charles Aznavour ... Michel Raven
Maria Rohm ... Elsa Martino
Adolfo Celi ... Gen. André Salvé
Stéphane Audran ... Ilona Morgan
Alberto de Mendoza ... Otto Martino
Richard Attenborough ... Judge Arthur Cannon
Gert Fröbe ... Wilhelm Blore (as Gert Froebe)
Herbert Lom ... Dr. Edward Armstrong
Elke Sommer ... Vera Clyde
Oliver Reed ... Hugh Lombard
Teresa Gimpera ... Maria
Rik Battaglia ... Vendedor (as Rick Battaglia)
Naser Malek Motiee ... Inspector (as Nasser Malek Moti-I)
Orson Welles ... U. N. Owen (voice)
Sepedeh Sepedeh ... Trapisondista


A group is invited, under false pretenses, to an isolated hotel in the Iranian desert. After dinner, a cassette tape accuses them all of crimes that they have gotten away with. One by one they begin to die, in accordance to the Ten Little Indians nursery rhyme. After a search is made of the hotel, they realize that the murderer is one of them. A few members of the group attempt to trust each other, but the question still remains, who can one trust? And who will leave the hotel alive? Written by Nick Johansen

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


They were all invited to a party. But it was really an invitation to a murder- their own. See more »


Mystery | Thriller


PG | See all certifications »



Italy | West Germany | France | Spain | UK


English | Italian | Spanish | German | French

Release Date:

1974 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

10 Little Indians See more »

Filming Locations:

Templo de Debod, Madrid, Spain See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(video) | (home cinema) | (original)

Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The original opening scene showed the ten characters disembarking a plane at an airport in Iran, where the helicopter awaits them on another section of the runway. The spies of the added subplot - which does not exist in Agatha Christie's novel - are introduced and then the helicopter carrying the main characters launches. The scene, featuring a sinister underscoring by Bruno Nicolai that is not heard elsewhere in the film, then fades into the familiar main title sequence in the U.S. version, wherein Elsa (Maria Rohm) stands waiting for the copter's distant arrival. See more »


Vera carries a three-candled candelabra as she and Hugh move to leave her room. Between her leaving the bed and reaching the door one of the flames extinguishes itself. They exit into the corridor in the next shot, where the candle has relit itself. See more »


Judge Arthur Cannon: Listen, why don't I trust you, and you trust me?
Dr. Edward Armstrong: The famous last words?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Cast, in the order of their disappearance: See more »


Version of ITV Play of the Week: Ten Little Niggers (1959) See more »


Dance In The Old Fashioned Way (Les Plaisirs Démodés)
Composed and Performed by Charles Aznavour
See more »

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User Reviews

So-so German/Spanish/British/Italian co-production about the famous Agatha Christie novel
12 May 2018 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

This 1974 rendition regarding a known plot , as ten people are invited to a desolate island by a mysterious host. Upon arriving, a strange voice recording accuses each of them of a murder committed in the past. And then someone begins to kill them one by one, choosing his methods from a grisly children's poem that hangs in every room of the house...set in remote Iran shot by Peter Collinson with great cast as Charles Aznavour , Maria Rohm , Adolfo Celi , Elke Sommer , Stephane Audran , Alberto De Mendoza , Richard Attenborough , Teresa Gimpera , Rich Battaglia and Herbert Lom . Based on a popular novel and subsequent stage play by Agatha Christie about a unseen killer who sequentially knocks off the visitors . Agatha Christie tale of 10 people invited to an isolated place , hovering around mouthing chunks of exposition while waiting to get murdered . The guests discuss and argue each other , only to find that an unseen person is killing them one by one . Just before the gripping climax of the film , you will be given sixty seconds to guess the killer's identity! The film will pause and on the screen you will see clues to help you decide who the murderer is...but the person in suspect is always the person who is murdered next . There is no way for any of them to flee , so they set about attempting to determine who their hidden host might be and where he might be hiding.

Whodunit in which have been invited ten people who are strangers to each other , when they are all gathered, they hear from their host that each one of them has in someway caused the death of an innocent person and that justice had not be served in their cases , the guests are being killed off one by one . A psychological thriller in which 10 strangers are forced to come face to face with their dark pasts after receiving invitation to an isolated location off the civilization .This one absolutely mucks up from an isolated island mansion to a hotel deep in the Iranian desert . Passable third adaptation , this one totally mucks up the tale , the original script was much more faithful to the original Agatha Christie novel with the setting on an island and the original grim conclusion of the book ; however, producer Harry Alan Towers changed it at the last second when he realized that it would be cheaper to shoot in the Iran desert and Madrid and that the novel's ending is less marketable than Christie's happier resolution from the play version of the story . Excruciantly tense and so-so rendition with the usual characters but slowly paced . The whole cast overacts at times and playing cardboard roles against desert scenarios and a luxurious hotel . This medium-budgeted picture is a reallly slow with some interesting elements ; sticks with the original and classic version . It packs an evocative cinematography being shot in Isfahan , Iran, and temple Debob, Madrid , and Almeria , Spain . Suspenseful and intriguing score by Bruno Nicolai , including a catching leitmotif .The motion picture was regular but professionally directed by Peter Collinson who made decent films until his early death as African rage , Earthling , House of Garibaldi street .

This is one of the innumerable versions based on Agatha Christie famous novel . The best version (1945) resulted to be the classic by Rene Clair with Barry Fitzgerard , Roland Young , June Duprez , Mischa Auer , C Aubrey Smith , Judith Anderson and Richard Haydn ; furthermore , 1965 version set in Austrian Alps by George Pollock with Hugh O'Brian as Hugh Lombard , Shirley Eaton as Ann Clyde , Fabian as Mike Raven , Leo Genn as General Mandrake as Stanley Holloway as William Blore , Wilfrid Hyde-White as Judge Cannon and Daliah Lavi as Ilona Bergen . And 1989 rendition ¨Ten little Indians¨ , switching from an isolated island to African landscapes located in the sabana , it was shot in South Africa by producers Avi Lerner and Harry Alan Towers directed by Alan Birkinshaw ,most actors are mediocre and unknown , though there are tree important players as Donald Pleasence , Brenda Vaccaro and Herbert Lom who had acted in a previous remake playing the doctor. Furthermore, a Russian version (1987) by Director: Stanislav Govorukhin with Russia Stars: Vladimir Zeldin, Tatyana Drubich, Aleksandr Kaydanovskiy .

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