Forbidden Planet (1956)


A starship crew goes to investigate the silence of a planet’s colony only to find two survivors and a deadly secret that one of them has. (IMDb)
There’s a compelling psychological climax here but it’s mostly too little, too late for a slow-paced storyline squashed by ridiculous romantic tangents and interesting but unnecessarily bloated discourse on futuristic technology, while an incessant and annoying “space sounds” soundtrack makes these contrived grabs for attention even less bearable. Inventive and enjoyable (if a little campy) sci-fi exploration here is outweighed by a shoddy plot in desperate need of substance and streamlining.
6/10 (Mediocre)

Soylent Green (1973)

With the world ravaged by the greenhouse effect and overpopulation, an NYPD detective investigates the murder of a CEO with ties to the world’s main food supply. (IMDb)
What stands out here is the chillingly plausible future setting (a bleak-looking, resource-depleted, corporate-controlled dystopia where things like hot water and fresh food are a supreme luxury), tactfully and naturally built with each affecting scene and populated by two great characters. Despite sharp dialogue, the plot isn’t quite as engaging–a murder mystery featuring bad fight sound effects that doesn’t go anywhere until the final twist–but it doesn’t need to be in this immersive sci-fi.
7/10 (Good)