Saturday, June 30, 2012
On DVD: URBANIZED--Gary Hustwit's third design documentary may be his very best
This newest film in Gary Hustwit's trilogy of documentaries about design and how it affects our lives may be his best yet. Having appreciated all three films -- Helvetica (2007), Objectified (2009) and now URBANIZED (2011), TrustMovies thinks this one is his best because it hits us squarely where we live (most of us, anyway): in the big city. Hustwit lets us in on what's going on in major cities around the world, as everyone -- from politicians to architects, city planners to sociologists -- shows and tells us the good stuff and the bad.
The National Enquirer, Mr Hustwit (shown at right) has a genuinely inquiring mind -- one interested in a lot more than mere gossip -- as do the talking heads with whom he peoples his films. If you at all care about how we live now and how we might live better and more productively for the environment and the world, you will learn one hell of a lot from his movies. These are often witty, visually and verbally, and none more so that Urbanized, during which we take a bike ride with Enrique Peñalosa, the former mayor of Bogota, Colombia (below), as he explains how mass transit and bicycles are helping to change the city; later, he tells us that he doesn't see anywhere in his (or most countries') Constitution the right to a parking place for a car. Yet so many citizens seem to think of this as one of their "inalienables."