Blue Vinyl Directed by Daniel B. Gold, Judith Helfand, 2002
Scary and Hilarious! " -- Elvis Mitchell, The New York Times
A critics’ darling at film festivals across the globe and Winner of the Excellence in Cinematography Award at Sundance, BLUE VINYL is a deeply personal and frighteningly vital exposé that has been applauded as “funny and irreverent… one of Sundance’s best documentaries!” (Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times).
Skeptical of her parents’ decision to “re-side” their Long Island home with polyvinyl chloride (PVC) — the seemingly benign cure-all of suburbia — Peabody Award-winning filmmaker Judith Helfand set out with co-director Daniel B. Gold to discover the truth behind the potentially toxic effects of the material, which is used in building everything from automobiles to computers, medical equipment, and children’s toys. With a tender-hearted agenda and a piece of blue vinyl siding firmly in hand, Helfand and Gold travel to the vinyl-manufacturing capital in Louisiana, enlist the help of a “green” builder in California, and journey as far as Venice, Italy — where 31 executives from a PVC-producing company await trial for manslaughter in a landmark conspiracy case.
Unexpectedly taking twists and turns in a filmmaking pursuit that most ordinary homeowners would never dare to take, BLUE VINYL is a heartfelt, sobering, and shockingly hilarious exploration of the complex relationship between consumers and industry.