- Rated: R
- Run Time: 1 hours, 50 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: May 21, 2013
- Originally Released: 1969
- Label: Criterion
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Note: Disc one:
- New, restored 4K digital film transfer, approved by director Haskell Wexler
- Two audio commentaries, one featuring Wexler, editorial consultant Paul Golding, and actor Marianna Hill, and the other featuring historian Paul Cronin
- Disc two:
- New interview with Wexler
- Extended excerpts from "Look Out Haskell, It's Real!," a documentary by Cronin about the making of Medium Cool, featuring interviews with Wexler; Golding; actors Verna Bloom, Peter Bonerz, and Robert Forster; Chicago historian Studs Terkel; and others
- Excerpts from Sooner or Later, Cronin's documentary about Harold Blankenship, who plays Harold in the film
- "Medium Cool" revisited, a new half-hour video by Wexler about the Occupy movement's protests against the 2012 NATO summit in Chicago
- A booklet featuring an essay by film critic and programmer Thomas Beard
- Special Edition
- Aspect Ratio: Widescreen - 1.85
- Subtitles - English
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Memorable Quotes and Dialog:
"Watch out Haskell, it's real."
- Director Haskell Wexler's assistant to Wexler after a tear gas canister is released
"Jesus! I love to shoot film!"
- John Cassellis (Robert Forster)
Premiere - 03/01/1995
"...By turns riotous, trippy, and downright lovely..." - Recommended
Entertainment Weekly - 05/05/1995
"...COOL emerges as an agonized search for truth..."
USA Today - 12/14/2001
"...A prophetic skewering of sound-bite journalism and one of the most left-wing movies ever backed by a major studio during its era..."
A television cameraman working in the turbulent Chicago of the late 1960s becomes involved in the violent situations that he constantly views from behind the camera. Actual riot footage adds to the film's realism.
Essential Cinema |
Social Issues |
Theatrical Release |
- Theatrical release: August 27, 1969.
- Shooting locations: Chicago, Illinois; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Washington, DC; and Kentucky.
- Estimated budget: $800,000.
- Haskell Wexler sought to achieve the utmost possible realism by putting his actors into the heart of the historic 1968 Chicago convention.
- Some of Wexler's footage was subpoenaed by the government.
- The title MEDIUM COOL refers to Marshall McLuhan's description of television as a "cool" medium.
- Chicago-based blues artists Mike Bloomfield and Paul Butterfield, along with Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, provided music for the score.