Radiant Cities

   11 September 2006, early morning

Shima and I watched Radiant Cities with her planning class. It’s a documentary about the suburbs and how they suck. The directors of the film, before the screening, joked about how totally biased the film was, and how they pretty much went out to make a film that just made fun of the suburbs. When they talk about suburbs in this film, they are really referring to the sorts of suburbs they build now: big cookie-cutter housing developments with names like Sudden Valley. The film focuses on one particular family and their life in the suburbs. Interspersed throughout the film are interviews with several famous planners and architects who discuss how to deal with the problems of the suburbs. The suburbs as we build them now are not a sustainable form of development; they are a bad idea. In many ways the film is also about the documentary film format itself, though I don’t want to discuss this lest I ruin the movie for you. Radiant Cities is a cool film, definitely worth watching.

The official Radiant Cities web site at the NFB.



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