Assessing Future Planning Through Film

Film is much more effective than planners or architects at assessing the possible future forms of cities, according to this article from film critic A.O. Scott.

"Architects and planners are by professional inclination both practical-minded and utopian. Their job is to solve problems, to ground their projects in collective hopes for a grander, cleaner, more rational organization of human space. The long-term results of their efforts, however, are typically ambiguous, yielding new problems on top of solutions. For much of the past century, the job of imagining the worst possible outcomes of their good intentions - of assessing the radically dystopian implications of urban progress - has fallen to film directors and production designers. They invent the city of the future not as a model but as a cautionary tale; and their future is the only future we know firsthand."

"To look back at some of those cinematic prophecies is to see the fears and contradictions of modern urban life made visible."

Full Story: Metropolis Now


Brand new! Urban Grid City Collection

Each city has its own unique story. Commemorate where you came from or where you want to go.
Grids and Guide Red book cover

Grids & Guides

A notebook for visual thinkers. Available in red and black.
Women's t-shirt with map of Los Angeles

City T-Shirts for the ladies!

Women's Supersoft CityFabric© Fashion Fit Tees. Now available in six different cities.
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $16.95 a month