Art & Copy - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Art & Copy Reviews

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Super Reviewer
January 27, 2010
A bit dry, and a bit inside, but this is a film for ad geeks that focuses on advertising since the big change: the day that art directors and copy writers started collaborating to produce not just ads, but the ideas behind the ads.

It used to be that writers would write their copy, then send it to the art directors, who would lay it out. The new model has resulted in the creative pairing most agencies now use: one art director, one copy writer, and with any luck, one good ad. This approach has had such success that it has even moved into the newspaper world, more or less killing layout departments and resulting in software for "page ownership", which turns the copy editor into an editor, photo editor and layout artist all at once, as in the end they produce one vertically integrated page.

This is the insight I took away from the first half-hour, and the bit about newspapers is me applying that insight to my own past work experience. After thinking through this, I watched the film alternate between self-congratulatory interviews with the creators of major campaigns - for VW Beetle, MacIntosh, Air Jordan and other products - and disembodied stats about how many ads we all see in a day, lifetime etc.

An interesting series of anecdotes that lets you inside some big industry brains and even bigger successes, but you have got to LOVE advertising to really enjoy this one.
Super Reviewer
½ January 21, 2012
This doc turns its camera, early in its run time, on a young man who's family has worked putting up highway billboards for several generations. He admits he does not know anyone who makes advertisements and then the film seems to forget him. My wife was assigned to watch this by her television promotions and advertising department. It is a mixed bag of talking heads giving bits of history and insight at varying levels of engrossment. I was most interested in those who talked about innovations in combining graphics (art) and print (copy). The few super bowl ads that are highlighted and how they came to be were also lots of fun.
Super Reviewer
½ October 24, 2009
Interesting look at advertisement, messages. Not so much design, but more about the story behind it and how they thought outside the box to develop an innovative message.
May 14, 2013
Its a good intro to what advertising is. For anyone who's properly informed, is not terribly reverlating.
February 15, 2012
This is one of my favorite movies out there. If psychology, art and language interest you, you will enjoy this movie. If you look to find fault with almost anything, you won't.
July 19, 2010
Poorly done docu on a really great topic. It seemed like everyone they interviewed was some washed up hack reliving his glory days. Every one of them thought they themselves were responsible for changing the world in the 1960s. And the scenes of satellites with the text of various statistics were so boring and uninteresting and outdated, but it was supposed to be dramatic and shocking.
June 4, 2010
Pretty conventional doc built around interviewing art directors and ad men from the 70s, interspersed with their memorable work. I hired George Lois once in the 80s, not long after his MTV and Hilfiger campaigns, and he's even more outrageous and self-obsessed in person than in this film, where he steals the show. Doc is missing a single nay-sayer, a single kid pointing at the naked emperor. Even advertising's royalty, which is what this movie features, have a lot to answer for. I guess that would be my movie, not Doug Pray's.
May 23, 2010
An interesting look into the world of advertising, specifically at what drives some of the most powerful people behind the most successful campaigns of all time.
½ April 12, 2010
Do a commercial, you're off the artistic roll call, every word you say is suspect, you're a corporate whore and eh, end of story.
Bill Hicks

By the way, if anyone here is in marketing or advertising...kill yourself. Thank you. Just planting seeds, planting seeds is all I'm doing. No joke here, really. Seriously, kill yourself, you have no rationalisation for what you do, you are Satan's little helpers. Kill yourself, kill yourself, kill yourself now. Now, back to the show. Seriously, I know the marketing people: 'There's gonna be a joke comin' up.' There's no fuckin' joke. Suck a tail pipe, hang yourself...borrow a pistol from an NRA buddy, do something...rid the world of your evil fuckin' presence.
Bill Hicks
August 26, 2009
The most inspirational film on any creative industry I've ever seen. Doug Pray decides to rise above an exposé on the advertising business and gives us a look at creative people operating at the top of their game. These folks work within an industry that often throws artistry to the wayside, in favor of commerce. The subjects in Pray's film live in a world where those two ideals flourish together.

The film is beautifully shot, scored and edited. A must-see for anyone who moves and operates within any creative field or endeavor.
½ June 12, 2009
Now I wrote about a month ago about the prospect of watching this Doug Pray film, and needless to say I was overwhelmed with excitement because a) Helvetica is an awesome movie, and I thought it was a similar type of film for those in "the biz" and b) I really want to explore the realm of advertising, therefore -- this was going to be the ultimate bestest film that I will have seen this year.

Well sorry to burst your bubble kids, but it really let me down. I feel like I may have set myself up with some preconceived notions of how all of the information was going to be presented -- mostly in a neat and comprehensive little package with tight compositions and a superb score, however this let me down on all counts. Right away I was thrown into some peripheral storylines and you're effectively pulled in, but I found myself slightly aggravated, I was sitting in my seat "waiting for the good stuff" and once we got into historical context -- I was thrilled, enthralled, drawn in. But then all of the sudden it's been a blip on the radar, we've fast forwarded into the 60's and 80's and we'll never leave the comfort zone of the 6 or so main companies. That's not what I wanted! I wanted to look at everyone -- where are the new and cutting edge guys? Where's Crispin Porter? Where's Ogilvy and Mather? What is up with these massive inconsistencies in presented work? This is hardly a large sampling, admittedly some of their ads were collectively the most "well known", and I adored the bits with the legenday George Lois (one of the original "Mad Men") but I just wanted a complete look across the time periods. Some of the most interesting bits of the film were the well integrated information graphics that would present absolutely unreal numbers and statistics -- but it gave me hope. It let me know that I chose a solid industry to pursue, that the industry works you hard and makes you think, and that sometimes -- it can be really fun!
Super Reviewer
April 10, 2009
Interesting doc takes a look at advertising and its effects on our society and culture. It's fascinating to see just how permeated we have become by advertising and just how effective and often unnoticeable it is, but the film has a tendency to gloss over the more negative effects.
January 27, 2009
A slickly produced, often fascinating, occasionally inspirational look at some of the precious few for whom advertising is not only a business but also an art form. If only it had explored the *failures* of these visionaries and their industry, and not just their successes.
½ February 20, 2016
I really dig the interviews about advertising in this film because there's unique perspectives you would never think of. It's not a perfect film and it's definitely not a film that explores how advertising can inflict on and harm society, but there's still heavy power in advertising that I think is explored in depth here by some of the best in the business.
December 22, 2013
"Art & Copy" es un documental ideal para introducir al espectador al controversial y fascinante mundo de la publicidad. Se abordan algunos hitos de la historia de la publicidad norteamericana y se ofrecen testimonios de grandes personajes de la profesión. Si usted espera una mirada profunda o controversial sobre la publicidad quedara insatisfecho. Pero si usted quiere saber quienes están detrás de esas frases ingeniosas y esas imágenes que se quedan en la consciencia del consumidor, este documental es para usted.... Que espera, cómprelo ya!
½ August 11, 2013
Pretty good doc on the advertising industry. A little self-congratulatory but I love advertising and the industry.
½ June 21, 2013
"Creativity can solve anything. ANYTHING!"
May 14, 2013
Its a good intro to what advertising is. For anyone who's properly informed, is not terribly reverlating.
April 3, 2013
This is an outstanding educational and inspiring tool for advertising and marketing students.
½ January 1, 2013
Interesting but not informative.
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