The Most Dangerous Game by Richard Connell (Summary and Review) – Minute Book Report

This is a story about a man named Rainsford,
an expert in hunting jaguar, who falls off a boat and is left on a deserted island in
the Caribbean. Rainsford discovers that the island is not
deserted, as a man named General Zaroff and his assistant, Ivan, live there in an elaborate
mansion. Over dinner, Zaroff shares that he too likes to hunt, but has grown tired of
hunting animals. Instead, he likes to hunt human with a revolver. Rainsford is appalled and wants to get off
the island. Zaroff says that he will let Rainsford go free if he can survive three days on the
island as his game. Rainsford is given food and a knife and heads
out into the jungle. He tries to create loops and double backs, eventually hiding in a tree.
However, Zaroff is too smart and finds Rainsford’s hiding spot, but without stopping the hunt,
he lets Rainsford go for another day. Rainsford decides to build a trap with sharp
sticks hidden in a pit. However, Zaroff is aware of the trap and it only claims his dog. On the third day, Zaroff releases his hounds
and pursues Rainsford to the edge of the island. Ivan is killed by a knife trap and Rainsford
is forced to jump into the ocean to escape the hounds. Disappointed, Zaroff returns home. In the end, as Zaroff is about to go to bed,
Rainsford appears in his bedroom and kills him. As always, a lot can be said about this story,
but what draws my interest and attention is the idea that humans are the only species
that can use reason and it’s this ability to reason that makes us the most dangerous
game in the world. As Zaroff outlines to Rainsford and the reader
how he came to hunting human, he reveals that it is the ability to reason that gives human
beings the ultimate survival mind. We’re both selfish and creative, which allows us
to come up with some interesting ideas and behaviors. Generally speaking, a hunter will hunt and
the game will run and hide. The game will continue to run until it feels it is safe,
but it never really reasons that it could probably turn around and fight back, unless,
of course, it’s cornered. But the entire time, its instinct guides it to run away.
It can never reason and critically evaluate the situation, changing it’s course to perhaps
try a different strategy. Humans are capable of doing this and we see
this through Rainsford during the hunt. On the first day of the hunt, Rainsford acts
like game; he just runs and hides. However, by the second day, he is already on the offensive
with a deadly trap. He reasons that his best chance of survival is not to run and hide,
but to eliminate Zaroff. So how does this relate to us today? There
are no Hunger Games or gladiator matches in existence, but we do see an arena where people
can truly test their skill and minds against each other: online gaming. In the world of online gaming, specifically
player versus player game modes, a human is matched up against another human. Usually
there is one winner who, over the course of the match, outplays and out thinks the opponent. In the story, matching wits with another human
gives Zaroff a psychological high, which may be why many video game players enjoy online
player vs player games rather than against the preset computer. So, let me know what you think about the story
in the comments below. Don’t forget to subscribe for more Minute
Book Reports and thanks for watching.

67 Replies to “The Most Dangerous Game by Richard Connell (Summary and Review) – Minute Book Report

  1. Great and accurate portrayal of the short story. I really enjoyed this review. It gave me a deeper understanding of the story. Thanks

  2. I found the story really boring and couldn't sit through it, but I needed to read it for homework. So i just looked up a review 😀
    pretty good analysis tho

  3. I agree with Zaroff's thinking in the way you relate to online gaming. The computer Ai is rather predictable, while in PvP modes there is almost always a different way to play each gaming so it doesn't become boring.

  4. uh, I wish video games never existed. Anyways I love the summery, the explanation was very clear. I really appreciate the work you put into this video. 🙂

  5. The tension during the dinner was great. I'm like "Holy shit, this dude is nuts!" Just like Rainsford.
    I love this story


  7. I have to write an essay about this book, however I missed the first day we started reading it so yesterday I was so confused on what was going on! So this really helped me out!

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