7.4/10
3,231
52 user 68 critic

Medium Cool (1969)

A TV news reporter finds himself becoming personally involved in the violence that erupts around the 1968 Democratic National Convention.

Director:

Haskell Wexler

Writer:

Haskell Wexler
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A Ukrainian village must suddenly contend with the Nazi invasion of June 1941.

Director: Lewis Milestone
Stars: Anne Baxter, Dana Andrews, Walter Huston
Action | Biography | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The criminal exploits of Public Enemy number 1, George 'Machine-Gun' Kelly, during the 1930s.

Director: Roger Corman
Stars: Charles Bronson, Susan Cabot, Morey Amsterdam
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A tomboy turned movie star deals with the cruelty of Hollywood.

Director: Robert Mulligan
Stars: Natalie Wood, Christopher Plummer, Robert Redford
Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Frank Sinatra plays Joe E. Lewis, a famous comedian of the 1930s-50s. When the movie opens, Lewis is a young, talented singer who performs in speakeasies. When he bolts one job for another,... See full summary »

Director: Charles Vidor
Stars: Frank Sinatra, Mitzi Gaynor, Jeanne Crain
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

When Confederate officer Colt Saunders returns to his Texas ranch after the war he finds his lands wanted by carpetbaggers and by corrupt provisional government commissioners Harrison and Cable.

Director: Rudolph Maté
Stars: Charlton Heston, Anne Baxter, Gilbert Roland
Iron Eagle (1986)
Action | Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A young pilot plans a rescue mission when his father, an Air Force Colonel, is shot down over enemy territory and captured.

Director: Sidney J. Furie
Stars: Louis Gossett Jr., Jason Gedrick, David Suchet
The Bus (1965)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The struggle for civil rights has been one of the most important issues of American life for the last fifty years. In August of 1963, groups from all over the country journeyed to ... See full summary »

Director: Haskell Wexler
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Forster ... John Cassellis
Verna Bloom ... Eileen
Peter Bonerz ... Gus
Marianna Hill ... Ruth
Harold Blankenship Harold Blankenship ... Harold
Charles Geary Charles Geary ... Harold's Father
Sid McCoy Sid McCoy ... Frank Baker
Christine Bergstrom Christine Bergstrom ... Dede
William Sickingen William Sickingen ... News Director
Robert McAndrew ... Pennybaker
Marrian Walters ... Social Worker
Beverly Younger Beverly Younger ... Rich Lady
Edward Croke Edward Croke ... Plain-clothesman
Doug Kimball Doug Kimball ... Newscaster
Peter Boyle ... Gun Clinic Manager
Edit

Storyline

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

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Dateline: Chicago August '68 See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 February 1970 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

The Concrete Wilderness See more »

Filming Locations:

Illinois, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$800,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

H & J See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Some of the background intercom chatter playing during the first scenes shown of the television station that John Cassellis works at is the same intercom chatter used in George Lucas' student film Electronic Labyrinth THX 1138 4EB (1967). Paul Golding, who served as an editorial consultant for this film, had also been a collaborator on some of Lucas' other student films. See more »

Goofs

When Eileen enters the L looks for Harold, she is wearing a white hair band, but when they show her sitting on the L, the hair band is missing. See more »

Quotes

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

Crazy Credits

Studs Terkel is credited as "Our Man in Chicago". See more »

Alternate Versions

Due to copyright disputes, all video releases feature some different songs on the soundtrack from the theatrical version. See more »

Connections

Featured in Precious Images (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Oh No
(uncredited)
Written by Frank Zappa
Performed by Frank Zappa & The Mothers of Invention
Played when John and Gus ride in car past Lincoln Memorial
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Captures the time, place and feeling
23 May 2009 | by GethinVanHSee all my reviews

Movies have a way of capturing the moment better than recreating it. I can only dread what a recreated 1968 in Chicago would look like from a Hollywood perspective. It would probably resemble something out of Forrest Gump. But Medium Cool happened to capture some brutal fight scenes with police in Chicago as well as scenes from the black ghettos. You can't recreate this stuff. This isn't a documentary but cinema verité and combines fiction and non-fictional elements. It's all shot with Chicago of 68 in the background. A landmark and infamous year for the US with the assassinations of RFK and MLK as well as the 1968 Democratic National Convention which was met with severe state repression. The state wasn't negotiating at this time, it was brutally sending men off to war and attacking those at home with the hired goons of the police force.

It's a great movie which manages to combine fiction and non-fiction and shows us what the sixties were really like. It wasn't all love beads and LSD, although there is an amusing psychedelic sequence which takes place in a club.

I think what I liked most was that even people who were non-political were being dragged into the politics of the time. Events were that serious at the time and people had to begin picking sides, the pleasant, white, middle-class interior of the Chicago DNC or outside fighting and raging against the police.


5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 52 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed