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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 6:00 pm 
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Damned Dirty Admin
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Harry Harrison, the author of Make Room! Make Room! which was made into this classic of sci-fi cinema, passed away earlier today.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/au ... y-harrison

R.I.P.

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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:31 pm 
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Prince Judah
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Clearly a dintinctive writer - I have his Deathworld trilogy in paperback and just began reading it; I'm only on the 20th page. He sure had his share of interesting ideas, such as a world very dangerous to humans due to how life has evolved there.

I guess he is most famous for Make Room! Make Room! because of the film Soylent Green. It may just be the best-known exploration of the 'population explosion' idea; the original Star Trek series tried to look at this idea with its episode The Mark of Gideon. Harrison was clearly an influence. R.I.P.


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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 10:05 pm 
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Michelangelo

Joined: Tue Nov 09, 2010 4:11 pm
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I just re-watched Soylent Green last Friday!
Harry Harrison, R.I.P.


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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2012 7:23 am 
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Cheating Bastard

Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:40 am
Posts: 46
Just to add to an old discussion. I think people sleeping on the stairs, constantly in the way, is another way of saying how functionally hampering it is to live in a city with forty million residents. They're literally everywhere you step.

I'd also like to add this review I found. I've saved a lot of links to reviews I like and have just recently realized many of them are dead now. The content has disappeared. The search begins again. This time I've learned my lesson and I'll save them on hard copy. Here's a review from The Digital Fix I really like.

http://film.thedigitalfix.com/content/id/5924/soylent-green.html

"Soylent Green is something to treasure. It's a film made over thirty years ago that still hasn't lost its power of the years; a fact made more remarkable by the fact that this is a sci-fi movie that concerns itself with the universally popular, and difficult to do well, theme of the 'end of civilisation as we know it'.

Civilisation here is under threat from the twin evils of overpopulation and pollution. More mundane than, say nuclear war or zombies, but rather more realistic, Soylent Green's strength is that the breakdown of society is not dealt with directly, but rather exists as the backdrop to the main story. This gives the whole apocalyptic theme a rather subtle feel, and it's all the more effective for it.

The main plot element is that of a simple murder investigation that turns into something rather more complicated. It has elements of film noir, the dogged detective and the femme fatale, and this is nicely played with. Thorn, played with charm and charisma, by Charlton Heston, is classic noir material. He's no hero, has a record of failure with the department and isn't above stealing luxuries from the dead man's apartment. His Femme Fatale, Shirl played by Leigh Taylor-Young, exists as an item of furniture, a female that comes with each apartment, subservience to the male dominant society works well as a polar opposite to the usual, more powerful, female often present in noir. And, of course, this whole issue of females as 'furniture' is a powerful metaphor for feminist concerns.

Of course, Thorn uncovers a web of conspiracy and evil the further he gets into the case and as is usual, his boss is corrupt and tries to close the case. No surprises, but it's use here, in what is on the surface a sci-fi film, is very effective and it gives the more outlandish elements of the plot a solid grounding in film realism and ensures the secret at the heart of the film is all the more shocking once it becomes clear.

Fleischer's direction is also very effective. The 2.40/1 ratio is used extremely well, Fleischer chooses to use the wide scope to emphasise the claustrophobia and this is not an easy trick to pull off. Characters are rarely shot from a distance, and when they are, it's always to highlight the desolation of the city that crumbles around them. It's also rare for a character to be shot in close-up, and Fleischer ensures that the characters are almost never in frame alone, as it were, and there is always some form of architecture or obstacle for them to negotiate, such as climbing over mounds of the homeless. It's very subtle, and its use builds as the film progresses culminating in a frantic chase through the twisted gantry of a waste disposal plant. Fleischer is using the architecture of the film as a metaphor for the limited choices and paths of its characters and it works extremely well.

Fleischers direction throughout is superb; many of the scenes have an iconic feel to them, and the impact of the riot scene, with the human scoops, and the scenes at the end, in the waste disposal plant have lost none of their power to the years. One major strength of the film, though one that some might find infuriating, is the way in which it raises moral issues, but refuses to take a firm stance on them. A good example of this is the way the film deals with euthanasia, carried out for the good of the population. It's presented in a very straightforward and clinical way, and is all the more powerful for it. As an aside, if you do like your films spelled out for you and with full resolutions, look elsewhere.

Performances throughout are excellent, and Charlton Heston commands the screen with great aplomb. He's always a joy to watch, and his portrayal of the amoral Thorn stands as one of his finest moments. Support comes from the great Edward G Robinson, here in his last role, and Leigh Taylor-Young, both of who play their roles with great sympathy. One of the reasons why this film works so well is that the actors take it all very seriously, and there's no room for tongue in cheek here.

Soylent Green is multi-layered, complex sci-fi movie that still has the power to shock. It hasn't lost any of its power over the years. Without giving anything away, the end of the film is simple, subtle but all the more horrifying for it, and once the full implications have sunk in, as the end credits roll, it'll leave you with a nasty taste in the mouth."


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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 5:10 pm 
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Astronaut

Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:50 am
Posts: 598
It's a very good review, and a pleasure to read, especially the discussion of the architecture of the city as symbolic of claustrophobia, and the politics of gender in discussing Shirl's role as Femme Fatale. Thanks for sharing.

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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:02 pm 
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No Water For Me

Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2013 9:01 pm
Posts: 14
I wrote to Mr Heston saying how touching his scene was with Edward G Robinson who really was dying of Cancer and had only a short time to live.

I'm talking about when he went to the clinic and was given 20 minutes before ending his own life informing that they were eating people. I LOVE YOU THORNE! very moving.


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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 5:18 pm 
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Soylent Corp. Lackey

Joined: Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:55 pm
Posts: 77
Location: New York
EL-CID-1983 wrote:
Detective Thorn wrote:
EL-CID-1983 wrote:
I heard this recently got a Blu-Ray release. Entertainment Weekly referred to it as having "some of Heston's zestiest over acting." I was like 'Damn, is it really that essential to make fun of him?' :evil:

Tell me about it. Reviewers seem to enjoy making fun of him every chance they get, it's so transparent why they do it and it's equally pathetic.

I think Soylent Green has some of the best acting from Chuck, the scene where Sol is "going home" is one example of terrific acting on his part.

As for the Blu-ray, I hear there is no new special features on it, unfortunately.

They hate him because later in life he was a Republican (yeah, like nobody before him had ever gone from being a Democrat to being a Republican) and because he was president of the NRA. It's really not even about his film work, it's because of his NRA Presidency and Michael Moore's "Bowling for Columbine". A whole generation, and possibly future generations, hate the man based solely on that one aspect of his later life with no regards for his life before that. A respected Hollywood actor for over what, 40-50 years, never got in trouble by dabbling in the kind of nonsense of modern stars (and some of his contemporaries) get into, married to only one woman, stable family life, former Civil Rights supporter, president of various Hollywood outlets, among them President of the Screen Actors Guild, and all anyone cares about is "You'll get my rifle when you pry it from my cold dead hands!" It's like his whole life & legacy is defined by that one single activity. The way some people spew hatred at him you'd think he was a Nazi war criminal or something. :banghead:


Sadly, what you say here is all too true. I'm afraid that poor Chuck will forever be slighted by many just because of his political leanings, which is very unfair.

I recall when he died, that Paul Newman also passed around the same time. I found it disgusting that Heston got less coverage on magazine covers than Newman did (no offense to Newman - I like many of his movies).


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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 5:25 pm 
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Soylent Corp. Lackey

Joined: Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:55 pm
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Location: New York
I just wanted to say that I love SOYLENT GREEN. I was very lucky to have seen it in the theater twice when it was originally shown. The first time was when a friend's dad took us kids to the movies and we saw an MGM double feature -- SOYLENT GREEN and WESTWOLRD.

It's odd, but these days I'm not sure that kids could get into a movie like SOYLENT GREEN. However, there was no problem in the early 1970s!


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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:55 pm 
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Joe Karlosi wrote:
It's odd, but these days I'm not sure that kids could get into a movie like SOYLENT GREEN. However, there was no problem in the early 1970s!

I'm certainly gonna try with my future kids!

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 Post subject: Re: Soylent Green
PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2014 1:38 pm 
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Astronaut

Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:50 am
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Here is a person who writes about the 'filthy' colour in Soylent Green, and the 'politics' he finds in the movie. If you are interested, read the blog at http://cerealandamovie.blogspot.in/2008 ... green.html

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