Ever been to a glass factory? I have. But so long ago that I only have vague memories veiled in the mists of time. A few days back, I chanced upon this magical short documentary, simply named “Glass.” It is a ten-minute window into the contrasting processes of manufacturing hand made crystal at the Royal Leerdam Glass Factory with that of ordinary glass bottles at an automated factory in the Netherlands. It vividly highlights the inadequacies of automation, the responsibilities of workers in both factories, and of course, the beautiful products that are shaped on the forge. The jazzy background score interspersed with some electronica in the middle sets the rhythm as the workers go about their job, lending a lyricism to something otherwise so mechanical. Fine focusing and superb coordination between audio and video, makes this a fine montage to watch.
“Glass” deservedly won the Oscar award in 1959 for Best Short Documentary. Watch it here, and tell me if you aren’t impressed already!