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Soylent Green (1973)

People will do anything to get what they need. And they need SOYLENT GREEN. | guide

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Old Oct 24, 2003, 05:31 PM   #1
Tomacco
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Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

Hey everyone.
In my American Film class I've actually chosen to write an assignment involving Soylent Green, and what I need to do is find a book or novel relating to a pertinent theme or topic shown in the movie. The purpose is to gain insight into an aspect of social or political history of the time period that the movie was made.

What would you all say a movie like Soylent Green tells us about the time period when the movie was made (1973)? It's interesting to think about it, since the movie itself takes place in 2022. But what issues that were relevant in 1973 were implicated in the movie?

I was thinking maybe overpopulation, but I'm not sure that's precise to that time period specifically.

Any ideas? I would really appreciate it.
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Old Oct 24, 2003, 07:07 PM   #2
becks-orion
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Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

the seventies were a time of changing ideas and attitudes, the aftermath of the sixties.

so you have a lot of fighting for freedom from many different classes of people (women to black/other nationalities) as soylent green explores social class and the gap between rich and poor these fear and prejudices are reflected as is a distaste for their abusive treatment as this was no longer viewed as the norm.

with the final outcome another fear is revealed, that of the consumption of others. this is repulsive on many levels such as, by consuming others will we in fact become like them? but it mainly shows the continuing dominance of those in power over those without. they are in effect telling them that they can never become anything more than what they are, the lowest on the food chain.
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Old Nov 9, 2003, 11:13 AM   #3
Vorlon
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Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

I think the seventies in America was a time when environmental awareness was in its infancy. The country was experiencing things like the energy crisis where petrol had to be rationed. For the first time people started to realise that the Earth could not sustain reckless consumerism and that natural resources were not an inexhaustable supply.

Theres also some parrellels about loss of identity, about the state taking over the individual and 'devouring' people.
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Old Nov 24, 2003, 05:47 PM   #4
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Angry Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

The movie was just what it stated...A neat easy way to get rid of the old that no longer could contribute to society...nuff said..
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Old Nov 27, 2003, 01:48 PM   #5
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Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

SG also came out right about the time of Roe vs Wade.

Parallels?
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Old Nov 28, 2003, 01:17 AM   #6
Sleeper
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Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

How about going to the source material, MAKE ROOM! MAKE ROOM!
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Old Jan 10, 2004, 10:24 PM   #7
Kati Kasmadi
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Reply regarding 1973 info.

Hello, In response to your inquiry about Solyent Green and what was happening in 1973 here goes:
1. There was an oil embargo, started by OPEC, aimed at hurting United States industries and transportation, and also to boost the prices of oil world-wide for the benefit of oil producing nations. OPEC would only allow a certain amount of oil to be sold to the U.S. which resulted in oil and gasoline shortages, and also sent prices of oil related products sky-high. Due to this oil embargo, there were long lines, some stretching many city blocks long, at every gas station. Some states adopted policies restricting gasoline sales to odd and even numbered license plated cars on odd and even numbered days of the week. Other cities resorted to enforced gasoline rationing. The speed limits on roadways were restricted to 50 MPH and there were long traffic jams where you could actually sit in one spot for an hour or more before you could move forward.
2. About this time, there was also a furious debate in many states about legalizing abortion. This was an issue that was very volatile in nature because it involved the Catholic Church policy of no birth control. This is a policy that was also shared by many other Christian churches, but not by all. There were many very violent demonstrations with proponents of both sides actually fighting in the streets with each other. There were even some deaths as a result of rioting at these demonstrations. In the movie, there are scenes where people have sought refuge inside the local Catholic Church. Many people who saw this file when it first came out in 1973 (like me), felt that the film was giving a subtle message about the anti-birth control policies of the Catholic Church, and the possible long-term effects of not controlling the birth rate.
3. Around this time, there was also a major wave of building construction where some of the tallest and largest buildings in the world were being built, including the World Trade Center in New York City. I saw these buildings being built, as I lived right there in New York, and many people argued about how big was too big for a building.
4. Also around this time, there were many power failures in major cities due to increased demands for electricity, especially for airconditioning in the summer months. The Big Blackout of 1965 was only eight years before Soylent Green was made and everyone still remembered it. Some cities instituted policies that forced people to shut off their airconditioners at certain times, depending on where they lived. There were also energy policies being instituted that regulated water usage due to severe drought conditions that left some cities without enough water in summer months.
5. It was discovered around this time that there was a trend of global warming and the greenhouse effect was being discussed for the first time as a potential threat to our environment. Also, the acid rain phenomenon was first being discovered as killing off the natural life in lakes and ponds by killing the algae that supported the ecosystems of these natural water bodies.
6. 1973 was the year of the Watergate political scandal, involving president Nixon and his part in the phone bugging of the Democratic campaign headquarters at the Watergate hotel in Washington, DC. Nixon eventually resigned as a result of this scandal. The entire nation was shocked and most people began to think from this time forward that all our leaders were not telling the truth to us. A very demoralizing experience which compares to the Govenor in Soylent Green trying to cover up what Soylent Green wafers are really made of. In the film, the government claims the wafers are made of sea plankton. The wafers, however, are really made of dead people because the oceans are dying due to pollution killing off the plankton.
7. It was right around this time that people began to demand the "right to die" when they had a terminal illness. The government does not allow assisted suicide now, but in Soylent Green, it was actually provided by the government in an attempt to decrease some of the overpopulation. An interesting piece of information regarding the film is that one of the stars, Edward G. Robinson, was actually terminally ill and he knew he was dying when he made this film. Therefore, the scene in which he decides to "Go home" and be euthanized is a very powerful and touching part of the movie.
All of these issues are addresses either directly or indirectly in the movie. If you need more data on 1973, check out Wickipedia.com website. Also, you may e-mail me at kwqd@hotmail.com for information on this film and this era. As a little old lady who is also a Sci-Fi film fan, I would be happy to help you out with your assignments.
Good luck with your assignment.
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Old Jul 24, 2004, 07:09 PM   #8
dvo47p
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Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

Quote:
Originally posted by Tomacco
Hey everyone.
In my American Film class I've actually chosen to write an assignment involving Soylent Green, and what I need to do is find a book or novel relating to a pertinent theme or topic shown in the movie. The purpose is to gain insight into an aspect of social or political history of the time period that the movie was made.

What would you all say a movie like Soylent Green tells us about the time period when the movie was made (1973)? It's interesting to think about it, since the movie itself takes place in 2022. But what issues that were relevant in 1973 were implicated in the movie?

I was thinking maybe overpopulation, but I'm not sure that's precise to that time period specifically.

Any ideas? I would really appreciate it.

Sure thing 1973's Soylent Green, is based on Harry Harrison's novel "Make Room! Make Room!" It is based in the year 2022 in New York City.
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Old Aug 16, 2004, 07:28 PM   #9
Clay
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Re: Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

Quote:
Originally posted by dvo47p


Sure thing 1973's Soylent Green, is based on Harry Harrison's novel "Make Room! Make Room!" It is based in the year 2022 in New York City.
____________________________________________________

Wow, I never realized it was based on a novel of a different title.
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Old Aug 17, 2004, 07:23 PM   #10
dvo47p
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Re: Need Help from "Soylent Green" Experts

Not even close

Fahrenheit 451 warns about censorship, like Orwell's 1984.

Not environmental or a population cataclysm like Harry Harrison's Make “Room! Make Room!”
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Old Dec 31, 2004, 05:00 AM   #11
soylentgreensurvivor81
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Reply to questions in Soylent green

well you had gas prices and the start of inflation going up in 1973. There was also the ephasis of plastic in dinnerware which was becoming more popular in homes. If you notice in Simonson's apartment the furniture gave off a synthetic quality, you see similar furniture in Tab Fielding's apartment however the wall paper in the background is old, fadded and pealing. The furniture looks as if it was designed with that in mind.
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