homeabout kottke.orgarchives + tags

kottke.org posts about manufacturedlandscapes

Manufactured Landscapes

posted by Jason Kottke   Apr 16, 2008

Manufactured Landscapes opens with an eight-minute tracking shot of a gigantic factory in China, the camera moving past row after row of workers assembling widgets until you feel like the factory floor circumnavigates the globe. The point of the shot, as with Edward Burtynsky’s photography, is to encourage the viewer to do some rudimentary mathematics about the scale of industry in the world:

eight minutes to move across one factory + look at all those employees + how many factories like this are there in China? = wow, that’s a lot of widgets

While it’s unfair to say that the movie goes downhill from there, the tracking shot packs such a punch that the rest of the film seemed lacking in comparison. It was the only shot in the film that really felt like the cinematic equivalent of Burtynsky’s photography…a long photograph, if you will.

We Work Remotely

Manufactured Landscapes is a documentary about Edward

posted by Jason Kottke   Jun 20, 2007

Manufactured Landscapes is a documentary about Edward Burtynsky and the photos that he’s taken in China of the Three Gorges Dam, factories, and other vast industrial projects. Trailer is here and it’s available on DVD at Amazon. (thx, scott)

Update: Manufactured Landscapes is playing in NYC at Film Forum starting tonight through July 3.