The 20th century’s industrialization has left the world permanently overcrowded, polluted and stagnant by the turn of the 21st. In 2022, with 40 million people in New York City alone, housing is dilapidated and overcrowded; homeless people fill the streets; 20 million are unemployed with the few “lucky” ones with jobs scraping by, and food and working technology is scarce. Most of the population survives on rations produced by the Soylent Corporation, whose newest product is Soylent Green, a green wafer advertised to contain “high-energy plankton”, more nutritious and palatable than its predecessors “Red” and “Yellow”, but in short supply.
Soylent Green is a 1973 American science fiction film directed by Richard Fleischer and starring Charlton Heston and, in his final film, Edward G. Robinson. The film overlays the police procedural and science fiction genres as it depicts the investigation into the murder of a wealthy businessman in a dystopian future suffering from pollution, overpopulation, depleted resources, poverty, dying oceans, and a hot climate due to the greenhouse effect. Much of the population survives on processed food rations, including “soylent green”.
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