Helvetica ★★★½

I'm always amazed at how many people with no design or typographic tendencies enjoy this documentary, and this alone is a testament to how well Hustwit put together the range of talking heads. He plays them off one another, but also sequences them in a way that doesn't lose the linear narrative following Helvetica's progression from initial creation to global ubiquity. Most enjoyable are the extreme opinions on show (the ranting Spiekermann being a standout).

This is my second viewing of Helvetica. The first was at a local film festival screening (after which the director, Gary Hustwit, answered some questions for the audience), and upon rewatching it I realised how much my enjoyment of the film was also influenced by experiencing it in that setting; surrounded by a mix of type nerds, designers and the purely curious, the film projected up large on the big screen and a good-natured crowd laughing in all the right places. So while I still enjoyed it second time around, it was never going to live up to that first night unfortunately (though my rating still stands).

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