Art & Copy (2009)
Director: Doug Pray
documentary about the history of advertising, and advertising companies.
This was OK. It put things in a slightly different perspective. There are really two kinds of documentaries in my mind: issue studies and informational. Presenting no opposing views of anything stated, this one falls squarely in the second category. While that's a shame (a serious study of the impact of advertising on society would be interesting to view), there was purpose in this on its own. I also feel that "Mad Men" has demistifyed some of these notions, but that's not the point of the film, or its problem.
The point of the film was to make us understand where ads (and ad-creators in particular) come from; and it was successful in that. Not only did it show us the people, but to an extent it showed--intentionally or not--how easy it is to let a successful career go to one's head. There were some really interesting anecdotes, specifically one about the Nike slogan, "Just do it." I think it might have been more intesting to me if we saw more specific campaigns, actually.
Technically, this was fine. They mixed talking heads with archival footage and made their points with ease. I guess I'd recommend this if the topic interests you, but don't expect too much depth.
i found this pretty boring. it was a little interesting to see the different office styles and politics of different ad companies, but that was about it. all the terrible stereotypes about california, new age, offices are true! there was one agency with a "nest" actually made of sticks and stuff, where they had all their creative meetings, accompanied by a performance space below. it was also nice to see that all the agencies (in this doc) agreed that there is too much advertising in the world, not only in quantity, but in quality, appealing to only the lowest common denominator. there was an approach to this documentary that ads should be artful, because it is not only a reflection of contemporary society it somehow also has an immense influence on contemporary society. like a giant "circle of life". basically it was a long ad for ads.