Gary Hustwit's Helvetica is a documentary focussed on the titular typeface - through conversations with designers, he illuminates both the history and evolution of the typeface and allows the designers to wax philosophic about issues in design. His new film, Objectified, takes the same approach to the much broader topic of industrial design. Because the topic is so much more general -- in a Q&A after the showing I saw last night, Hewitt said he set himself some arbitrary limits of no clothing or shoes on one end and no architecture on the other -- the philosophizing goes much farther afield. But it's still a look at a field that it's very easy to let fade into the background of our modern lives, even though the results of industrial design affect us every day. And it doesn't hurt that it's beautifully shot and the score is delightful.
The showing I saw last night was a one-off sponsored by AIGA Chicago, IDSA Chicago, and Coudal Partners (the latter to whom I owe thanks for tickets). The film will be back for a week of screenings at the Siskel Center in June.
FuzzyCo grade: A