2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The second entry in Gary Hustwit's impressive design film trilogy, "Objectified," is getting a new Blu-ray release. This documentary is a uniquely fascinating look at how industrial design across the globe is shaping the future of our everyday household products. In his other documentary features within this series, he has looked at typography (Helvetica) and urban planning (Urbanized) in new and interesting ways. While neither of those films seemed to have a particularly sexy topic (especially typeface!), Hustwit managed to pack both films with surprisingly entertaining stories and unusual facts. "Objectified" takes, perhaps, the most recognizable theme and shows how international designers marry form with function when coming up with ordinary goods. As the camera glides over a wastebasket or a toothbrush, you might start seeing things in a new light! I, for one, started thinking about the beauty and functionality of certain items with a fresh viewpoint.
The movie, while only 75 minutes in length, interviews a good cross section of designers. Many of the participants work on the global stage and so several segments are presented in subtitles. Each subject has specific viewpoints that they share when thinking about design for mass production. And it is quite interesting to see the creative thought processes that go into the planning of something you might not think needs a lot of analysis. Seriously, an extended sequence about creating a toothbrush is absolutely fascinating! And no discussion about the mass production of functional design would be complete without trips to IKEA and Target.
In the end, I'm not sure that "Objectified" will have universal appeal. But if you like documentaries, general design concepts, or have a specific interest in the topic--this is a no-brainer. While the film looks great on Blu-ray, very crisp and clear, I don't know that it is a necessary upgrade if you already own the DVD. The Blu-ray also carries over the Bonus Footage from the prior release which includes about an hour of further footage and interviews. Hustwit's trilogy of design makes a unique impression by showcasing things we might not think of as being designed in that light. In that way, they capture a niche marketplace and stand as excellent educational tools for those looking to be the next generation of designers. KGHarris, 11/12.