DVD Review HTF Review: Soylent Green (Highly Recommended)

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Herb Kane, Jul 31, 2003.

Tags:
  1. Herb Kane

    Herb Kane Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 7, 2001
    Messages:
    1,342
    Likes Received:
    0
    [​IMG]


    Soylent Green





    Studio: Warner Brothers
    Year: 1973
    Rated: PG
    Film Length: 97 Mins
    Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)
    Audio: DD Mono
    Subtitles: English, French & Spanish






    The Feature:
    The year is 2022. New York has grown to 40 million people and all luxuries are basically non existent. Food has become a luxury. Civilization has changed. Even trees are all but extinct, so there is no paper for books. Food is provided by way of a cracker type substance called “Soylent”. There is Soylent Yellow, Soylent Red and the new “high energy miracle plankton called Soylent Green, collected from oceans around the world”. Apartments are even a luxury but they come with their own “furniture”…. In the way of young good looking girls who are afforded luxury and privilege for keeping their landlords happy. Detective Thorn (Charlton Heston) has been assigned a homicide case where a wealthy Soylent board member (Simonson played by Joseph Cotton) turns up dead. Robbery is quickly ruled out as the motive since nothing from the luxurious apartment has been taken. He is aided by his close friend and roommate Sol Roth (Edward G. Robinson) who is a retired professor. During the investigation, Thorn locates a bottle of bourbon, becomes romantically involved with “the furniture” and unravels a conspiracy that eventually explains the murder of Simonson.

    Not that it should come as a surprise to any of us, but in my opinion Edward G. Robinson’s performance (which by the way, was his final film), was superb. He was never lost for a quick retort or quip.

    The movie hosts a bevy of stars including Charlton Heston, Edward G. Robinson, Chuck Connors, Whit Bissel and Brock Peters (Tom Robinson of “To Kill A Mockingbird” fame).



    Video:
    While the film definitely had a look of “70’s” to it, I was quite impressed by this transfer. Colors were extremely vibrant. There are many facial close-ups and skin tone is excellent. The image was extremely sharp and I could detect no evidence of any dirt or film noise. Film grain was slight – almost non existent. I did notice the occasional shot which was softer than most of the film but I have to assume that was the intent. Overall, I found the transfer to be most pleasing.



    Audio:
    The disc is presented in a DD Mono soundtrack which is very solid. No sign of any hiss or popping (I could detect a slight hiss during the end credits). Dialogue was exceptionally clear. The audio comes through crystal clear and is well demonstrated during a few scenes when we hear a crowbar type tool slamming against a concrete wall, tables getting knocked over, and shell casings hitting the ground. Without giving too much away, there is a scene when Sol “goes home” and there are a number of classical pieces during the scene which are very impressive. For a DD Mono track, that speaks volumes.



    Special Features:
    There are a few special features which include:

    -Commentary by Director Richard Fleisher
    -Commentary by Leigh Taylor-Young (“Shirl”)
    -A Look At The World Of Soylent Green
    -MGM’s Tribute To Edward G. Robinson’s 101st film
    -Charlton Heston Sci-Fi Legend
    -Theatrical Trailer
    -Cast & Crew

    The tribute was a short film clip shot at a party to celebrate the actor’s 101st film. The Heston Legend clip simply shows a listing of many of the movies the actor starred in.



    Final Thoughts:
    I had never seen this film prior to today and I have to be honest, I was skeptical initially. It looked like a cheesy 70’s low budget Sci-Fi flick which generally, isn’t my cup of tea. After a few minutes into it, I found myself engrossed beyond my expectations. Is it dated? Sure. What movie made 30 years ago trying to project the future by 50 years, wouldn’t be! While I am not a huge fan of movies of this genre, I suspect fans of the film and those with a new interest in this genre will be extremely pleased with Warner’s offering. Highly Recommended.




    Release Date: August 5th, 2003
     
  2. Eric F

    Eric F Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 1999
    Messages:
    1,810
    Likes Received:
    0
    Nice. I want.

    BTW- Soylent Green tastes like chicken. Like CHICKEN!!!!
     
  3. Dan Shogren

    Dan Shogren Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Messages:
    185
    Likes Received:
    0
    ill definetly be picking this one up along with THE THING and THE OMEGA MAN
     
  4. Tony Whalen

    Tony Whalen Producer

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2002
    Messages:
    3,150
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  5. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 1999
    Messages:
    8,800
    Likes Received:
    3
    This one is on my list!

    Soylent Green is...

    PEOPLE!!!

    Glad to finally get such a nice 16x9 OAR transfer of this classic film. It made quite an impression on my when I saw it as a kid.

    -dave [​IMG]
     
  6. Garrett Adams

    Garrett Adams Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2000
    Messages:
    931
    Likes Received:
    0
    Herb, on the “To Kill A Mockingbird” reference you reversed the name. Should be, Brock Peters.
     
  7. Herb Kane

    Herb Kane Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 7, 2001
    Messages:
    1,342
    Likes Received:
    0
    Garrett.... thank you. I've made the change.

    Herb.
     
  8. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2000
    Messages:
    15,594
    Likes Received:
    334
    Location:
    London, England
    Real Name:
    Steve Christou
    A 70's SF classic, and with a few decent extras, surprise surprise!
    It's definitely on my menu.[​IMG]
     
  9. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 1999
    Messages:
    17,128
    Likes Received:
    388
    Location:
    Disney World and Universal Florida
    Real Name:
    Tony D.
    i've heard the story that it was edward g's last film and he died shortly after, but he knew he was very ill and going to die but no one else knew during filming. it seems to make his "scene" all the more touching for me when i watch it with this knowledge.

    i wonder if thhis story is actually true.
     
  10. Mark Cappelletty

    Mark Cappelletty Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 1999
    Messages:
    2,234
    Likes Received:
    148
    The transfer has to be better than the MGM LD, which was horrible. And I hope the chapter stops don't give away the film's final twist like the LD chapter markings did!
     
  11. Gordon McMurphy

    Gordon McMurphy Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2002
    Messages:
    3,530
    Likes Received:
    0
    Great stuff, Herb! [​IMG]

    I've been waiting a long time for this one. I'm so glad the transfer is spot-on. The use of Classical music is superb. The commentary sounds like a lot of fun, too.


    Gordy
     
  12. Travis_W

    Travis_W Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2000
    Messages:
    531
    Likes Received:
    0
    The Omega Man and Soylent Green arrived last night-excellent discs. I didn't even know there were any extras included on either.
     
  13. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2001
    Messages:
    2,959
    Likes Received:
    1
    Soylent Green 2

    It's Still People!! - AHHHHH!!


    I just saw that skit on an old Saturday night live the other day and was dying.

    I'll definitely be picking this up.
     
  14. Kenneth English

    Kenneth English Second Unit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 1999
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    0
    A great, great early 70s sci-fi movie. Saw this on AMC way back in the late 80s and have loved it ever since. Nice to finally have a decent transfer. [​IMG]
     
  15. Jordan_E

    Jordan_E Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    Messages:
    2,233
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh man, this movie still gets me today the way it did when I saw it as a kid! Another movie where ole Chuck has a great final scene!
     
  16. JustinCleveland

    JustinCleveland Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2002
    Messages:
    2,059
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Madison, WI
    Real Name:
    Justin Cleveland
    Eric,

    It was different colors... Soleynt White, etc... SOYLENT WHITE IS PEOPLE, it's PEOPLE...
    We miss you, Phil...
     
  17. Joel C

    Joel C Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 1999
    Messages:
    1,633
    Likes Received:
    0
    Good review, but can you talk more about the extras? I can read a list on a press release.
     
  18. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2001
    Messages:
    2,959
    Likes Received:
    1
    Justin,

    The very last part of the skit was "Soylent Green 2".

    I only caught the tail end of it, but it was pretty damn funny.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  19. Scott Hamilton

    Scott Hamilton Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Messages:
    171
    Likes Received:
    0
    Just a small request on future reviews could you tell a little more about the extra's.

    Just listing them doesn't really explain what is in them and if they are good or bad.

    Thanks
     
  20. Mark Cappelletty

    Mark Cappelletty Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 1999
    Messages:
    2,234
    Likes Received:
    148
    Got this one early. Transfer is great. What I heard of Fleischer's commentary is really interesting-- there's a lot of technique he discusses. It's not as engaging as the "20,000 Leagues..." commentary track, but it's still darn good.

    I saw this at the Egyptian as part of a Fleischer tribute about 4 years ago (they even showed "Mandingo"!) and he spoke with Heston, Leigh Taylor-Young and even Dick Van Patten! With Heston's non-involvement with this and "The Omega Man" for obvious health reasons, it's a drag they didn't use audio/video from that night (and when they showed "Omega" as part of a Heston tribute) or at least include a transcript.

    And yes, the chapter listings just about blow the films ultimate secret...
     

Share This Page