Film / Surviving the Game

Surviving the Game is a 1994 action film starring Ice-T, Rutger Hauer, and Gary Busey, loosely based on the short story "The Most Dangerous Game" by Richard Connell.

Jack Mason is a homeless man who thinks his life can't get any worse. Aside from having no home and not a dollar to his name, he loses his two best friends in the same day, and decides to commit suicide. A soup kitchen worker, Walter Cole, saves him from his suicide attempt and directs him to a business man named Thomas Burns, who offers him a job as a hunting guide. Mason has his doubts, but hey, well-paying job, right?


Shortly after getting to the remote site in the Pacific Northwest, Mason discovers that the rest of the hunting party (who paid handsomely to be there) has one specific prey in mind to hunt, said to be the most challenging of all prey animals: Man.

And guess who their lucky quarry is?

Surviving the Game received mostly negative reviews, and holds a 21% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. However, it has since developed a cult following.

This movie contains examples of:

  • Bridge Logic: Mason bridges a ravine with a tree by cutting it with a shotgun.
  • Disposable Vagrant: Burns makes his money by roping vagrants into the role of prey for his hunter friends.
  • From Bad to Worse: Mason thought his life couldn't get any worse. He was wrong.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: The premise.
  • A Real Man Is a Killer: Explored. One character relates a story where his father made him train his dog as an attack dog and then kill it, stating afterwards that, "Now, you are a man."
  • Rich Boredom: The rich hunting clients all pay $50,000 in order to go hunting - hunting a human, that is - for the ultimate rush.