Medium Cool (1969)

R  |   |  Drama  |  1970 (Japan)
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A TV news reporter finds himself becoming personally involved in the violence that erupts around the 1968 Democratic National Convention.



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2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Harold Blankenship ...
Charles Geary ...
Harold's Father
Sid McCoy ...
Frank Baker
Christine Bergstrom ...
William Sickingen ...
News Director
Robert McAndrew ...
Marrian Walters ...
Social Worker
Beverly Younger ...
Rich Lady
Edward Croke ...
Doug Kimball ...
Gun Clinic Manager


John Cassellis is the toughest TV-news reporter around. His area of interest is reporting about violence in the ghetto and racial tensions. But he discovers that his network helps the FBI by letting it look at his tapes to find suspects. When he protests, he is fired and goes to the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, Illinois. Written by Mattias Thuresson

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Beyond the age of innocence... into the age of awareness




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Release Date:

1970 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

The Concrete Wilderness  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$800,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Available on dvd and blu ray from the Criterion Collection. See more »


John Cassellis: Jesus I love to shoot film.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In keeping with the film's documentary style, the cast is not listed during the opening credits, only in the ending credits. See more »


References Contempt (1963) See more »


Mom and Dad
Written by Frank Zappa
Performed by Frank Zappa & The Mothers of Invention
Published by Verve
See more »

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User Reviews

Fascinating Sixties Document
5 June 2004 | by (Scotland) – See all my reviews

This film is a mixture of documentary footage and conventional narrative.

It tells the story of a tough news camera-man (Robert Forster) who falls for a young widow (Verna Bloom) and befriends her thirteen-year-old son, against the back-drop of the riots in Chicago in 1968.

The film utilises both professional actors and non-professionals, to very good effect. In fact there are scenes, such as the riot sequences, where there is a genuine sense of danger.

The main flaw in the film is that the love story is not well-handled and often quite dull, the far more interesting events are happening elsewhere.

This is a deeply political work and is savagely critical of the callous and cynical media, which distorts people's perceptions of the world.

Worth watching for anyone interested in the sixties, political cinema or American independent film.

Great soundtrack too.

13 of 17 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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