Joseph Cotten Blogathon – Soylent Green (1973)


This is the first of three posts dedicated to the The Joseph Cotten Blogathon being held over at Maddy Loves Her Classic Films and In The Good Old Days of Hollywood.

Tnx Maddy and Crystal for letting me take part!

“You know, when I was a kid, food was food. Before our scientific magicians poisoned the water, polluted the soil, decimated plant and animal life.” – Sol

Number of Times Seen – 1 (4 Sep 2018)

Brief Synopsis – In a futuristic utopian society, a devout homicide detective tries to find out why the CEO of the food corporation was brutally murdered.

My Take on it – This is a film that I knew the basic premise about just by being a movie fan even though I never saw this film before.

This is actually quite unfortunate because having known the film’s twist, I wasn’t that surprised when it was revealed.

The idea and premise is actually a great one even if there are too many new questions once one thinks about everything that transpires.

The cast is great and Charlton Heston does a great job in the lead.

Edward G. Robinson is also great in the role of a former investigator helping detective Heston in his quest for answers.

Jpoesph Cotten has a very small role in this film, but it is central to the whole plot and it was nice seeing the effects that his character has on the entire storyline.

I found it quite intriguing as to how the world of today was perceived from a utopian standpoint nearly 50 years ago.

Some of the facts they got right while others are way off.

This film is based on a novel that probably did a much better job explaining the intricacies of the storyline yet they still manage to present a very well paced murder mystery in a utopian society.

Bottom Line – Interesting idea that is slightly ruined if you already know what happens in the finale.  Heston and Robinson are both great as they try to uncover the secrets that led to the murder. Cotten plays a small yet very significant character in this story.  Interesting to see how the world we now live in was depicted nearly 50 years ago and its quite grim even if some of the ideas are in the right direction.  The novel this film is based on probably manages to explain things much better, but they still are able to keep things paced really well here without getting bogged down by too much exposition.  Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – During shooting, Edward G. Robinson was almost totally deaf. He could only hear people if they spoke directly into his ear. His dialogue scenes with other people had to be shot several times before he got the rhythm of the dialogue and was able to respond to people as if he could hear them. He could not hear director Richard Fleischer yell “cut” when a scene went wrong, so Robinson would often continue acting out the scene, unaware that shooting had stopped. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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9 thoughts on “Joseph Cotten Blogathon – Soylent Green (1973)

  1. Pingback: THE JOSEPH COTTEN BLOGATHON IS HERE – In The Good Old Days Of Classic Hollywood.

  2. Pingback: The Joseph Cotten Blogathon: Day 1 – Maddy Loves Her Classic Films

  3. I saw this film once a few years ago and really enjoyed it (I’m normally not a fan of sci-fi, but there are exceptions like this one). I also knew the plot twist unfortunately so no surprise. But I mean, it’s everywhere! The very sad thing about this film is that Edward G. Robinson was very ill and Charlton Heston knew it would be his last film. In the scene where his character dies, Charlton Heston was crying for real. :/ Thanks a lot for this great and well-balanced review! I agree that Joseph Cotten’s part is important for the story but I still wished he had more screentime. 😉

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  4. 1( This movie is one of my great “cheap movie bin” finds as I found it in one of those “big-box” store “combo packs” along with 2001: A Space Odyssey, Forbidden Planet, and Fantastic Voyage for five bucks.

    2) There’s a company out there which actually calls itself “Soylent.” They clearly never heard of film. https://soylent.com/

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  5. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1973 |

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